The year was 1993. I was visiting a dear friend in
Los Angeles when, somewhere in her vast house, I
lost my Rolodex.
Now, for you younger readers, a Rolodex is like a
set of business cards all filed alphabetically —
it’s how we all used to keep track of our contacts
before smart phones.
We looked everywhere in her house. And since I had
the Rolodex when I arrived and never took it with
me when we went out, we knew it had to be there.
But, it was never found. Not to this day!
At the time I thought to myself: I wonder if there
is someone in my Rolodex that I’m not supposed to
stay in touch with. (I tend to look for meaning in
even the smallest moments and experiences.)
And sure enough, years later it became clear. I
had gathered back together every single person’s
contact information but one. [I won’t reveal his
The reason this experience came back to me is that
yesterday I discovered that somehow nearly all of
the people on my contact list had been deleted
from the database of the contact management
website I use. It happened in the 2nd week of
August, right before I went on vacation, and right
before I sent out the final 3 email newsletters
inviting folks to my annual performance
breakthrough retreat to Bali.
We don’t know how the contacts were deleted, and
we may never know. But, what we do know is that….
…the last 4 ezines I sent out went to only 57
people. A tiny fraction of the hundreds of people
on my list. The 4th ezine was the announcement of
my new book, which we’ll be sending out again once
the list is restored.
If you’re not in the business of staying in touch
with clients and potential clients, you may not
realize that my contact list is almost the most
valuable part of my business – second only to my
own intellectual capital. It’s how I stay in touch
with my tribe, and it’s a critical tool in sharing
my latest thinking and inviting folks to study
further with me.
In the midst of trouble shooting what had happened
yesterday, I found myself pausing and wondering:
hmmmm, I wonder if this is another instance in
which I’m meant to narrow my focus to a smaller,
more relevant group of followers.
As with the Rolodex experience, only time will
tell. So, until then I need to let go of any
over-analyzing or worrying about “what ifs” –
which would simply be an inefficient and draining
use of prana (life force energy).
And if you don’t already know this already, let me
share with you that — in general — focusing your
emotions and mental energy on what is NOT happening
in the moment (worrying about the past or spinning
stories in your mind about what might happen in
the future) directly and negatively impacts your
performance at work and at home.
The good news is my assistant had made a back-up
copy of the contact database and we were able to
recreate a majority of the original list. But not
So, yes, this is a cathartic piece of writing
meant to share with you the importance of letting
go and being open to finding meaning in the
unexpected. Even when it might initially be
perceived as a huge tragedy or loss.
This time of year is an important time of year to
pause, reflect, and notice what you’re harvesting
from seeds planted long ago. I’ll write more on
this topic in my next ezine.
If you haven’t heard from me in the past several
weeks (owing to this weird technical glitch)—or if
you’ve never received my email newsletter—I invite
you to sign-up for either my free gift (on any
page of this website) or the free first chapter of
my new book here, both of which will add you to my
In the meantime, next time something seemingly
upsetting or challenging or unexpected happens to
you, I invite you to pause. Let go of any
judgments or story-telling in that monkey mind of
yours, and observe. Just watch what unfolds.
And let me know what happens in the space between
the mental chatter and worries!