When someone stops to talk with you about something that seems benign at first but then turns into something of substance, do you take note of that?
I'm referring to something that happened to me after a breakfast meeting this morning. After the meeting ended, I had planned to meeting with another member of this group, to chat with her about some possible work I might do for her. We were interrupted by another member who seemed anxious to talk. She wanted to ask about something she'd purchased. She wanted to know if it was a good purchase. She was second-guessing herself. It didn't seem like an important thing to interrupt a private conversation about, but it was important to her, so we agreed to take a look at her purchase.
She went out to her car and brought back a big department store bag, taking out another bag. Inside of that one was this huge, beautiful black bag. She'd purchased it at a significant bargain. It was shiny and huge and matched her outfit nicely. My colleague said it was definitely worth it. Even though I'm not much of a shopper, I agreed. If you can afford it, and it's something that you'll use, why not buy it? She seemed pleased.
Then the conversation quickly turned to a dance class she's been taking with another member of this group. She told us how it was changing her life in very spiritual ways, allowing her to give herself time that she needs to take care of herself. Her outlook on life, she told us, is much improved. Her story reminded me of the work I do with my BIKE. But I've not been able to take the time I need for myself lately. I've been so consumed with the work I'm doing on my book project. The deadline is getting closer and closer. As I listened, my mind turned to her testimonial. It affected me. I realized, right then, that I haven't been giving myself the time I need to take care of my body as I should. Her message came to me at just the right moment. I can write AND take care of myself, too. Otherwise, how can my work not suffer?!
That interruption turned out to include information that I actually needed, and, as it turned out, the other person as well. So it wasn't an interruption after all. Was it serendipity? I think so. This third party needed help but it turned out that she helped us as well--even though she didn't know she was doing that. Things happen for a reason, and they usually happen at the exact moment you need it to happen. But you have to be open to accept it into your life.
Have you ever experienced moments like these, where, what you think might be an interruption, instead, turns out to be exactly what you needed to know, to hear, to see, or to do...but weren't? For whatever reason.
Are you open to welcoming such interruptions, such serendipitous acts? If you stay tuned in to what your body needs, if you keep your eyes and ears open, if you acknowledge that others might have something worth sharing with you, you can be. You can teach yourself to pay attention, to tune in. Serendipity doesn't just happen; you have to be waiting for it, in a sense. You have to be willing and open to the opportunities.