113: When Something Unexpected Comes Along: Pots on the Stove 🍳

113: When Something Unexpected Comes Along: Pots on the Stove 🍳

Hello, my ah-mazing empty nest friend, 

Some years the unexpected is more the norm than the norm (whatever that means). The unexpected has a way of leveling us up, stretching us, and making us stronger. When we focus on a specific project or route for our lives, the unexpected may cause gut reactions such as, 

  • "Why have I been working on this project the whole time?" or
  • "My work must have moved out of my zone of genius."

Or the dreaded:

  • "Wow, I've been on the wrong path this whole time!"

Sure, that could be the case, but when we zoom out to the bigger picture of our life, it might only be time to move that project to the warming oven for a bit until other things have matured. You'll never go wrong if you consider both before making a big decision.

Coach Christine,

Your Empty Nest Coach

"Try different things, and know that some “recipes in the pots' are going to cook up a lot quicker than you were expecting."

Take a listen or read the full transcript at the bottom of this post.

⇓⇓⇓ More goodies below, too! Scroll down ⇓, so you don't miss anything! ⇓⇓⇓

🎙Unexpected opportunities? Does it mean you are off your life's course? Coach Christine discusses in this #Podcast episode #EmptyNest  #Podcast #WomenEmpoweringWomen  #Opportunities #Challenges💚

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What You Will Learn in this Episode 

  • An Analogy to Consider When Unexpected Opportunities Enter Your Life
  • To Remember to Discern What You Are Making it All Mean
  • To Remember that What You Are Making it Mean is Optional

Episode Questions for You To Consider

  1. How many pots do you have on your stove?
  2. Is this analogy useful?

Episode Resources

Send audio feedback to Coach Christine now: voicemail/text to 1-920-LIFEWIN (1-920-543-3946). 📞

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Episode 113 of the Your Empty Nest Coach Podcast


Christine:  Hi, it’s coach Christine.  This is my podcast, it is the Your Empty Nest Coach Podcast.  Today I discuss When Something Unexpected Comes Along and it’s episode number 113.  I work with mothers of high school students and beyond, who are in the trenches with sad and possibly, overwhelming thoughts about what their life will look like when their baby heads to college and begins to leave the nest.  My clients’ big question is what will I do with my time?  Is this you?  I’ve been there, and I get it.  Empowering you to write the next jaw-dropping, amazing chapter in your life is my passion.  I am energized by leading you in the process of exploration and am thrilled when you unlock the power that lies within you.  This podcast is my gift to you.


Hello, my future empty nest friend and CEO of your life, and CEO around here, that is short for Conscious Effective Olympian of Your Life!  You know all of that simmering I have talked about in an early episode and within many episodes since then?  Today, let’s consider that our life may have more than one pot on the stove.


Before we head into our imaginary kitchen, I am about to open up a few spots for one-on-one VIP intensive coaching.  This is for those of you who can set aside two and a half hours with me.  You’ll have my full attention.  We’ll walk through your current situation, all of the tools and resources available in the Flock, how to best use them.  We’ll even create a custom path just for you.  To get on my list, message me on Instagram or send me an email at Christine   AT youremptynestcoach.com.  I can’t wait to work with you!


Of course, I need to remind you that I have full show notes with links to anything I discuss in the episode, and a full episode transcription on my website.  Those reside at YourEmptyNestCoach.com/P (for podcast) and 113 (for this episode’s number).  (YourEmptyNestCoach.com/P113).


Thanks!  Thank you!  It’s time to thank our sponsor.  This episode is sponsored by my membership community, The GPS Support Flock; Your Flight to Success in the Empty Nest.  If you are ready to find the GPS of your life, sign up to receive an immediate and free download of my PDF, "How to Find Yourself in the Empty Nest," our GPS Life Principles document.  You will also have the opportunity to learn about our community.  See the link in this episode's show notes or fly on over to my website, YourEmptyNestCoach.com.  Click the GPS Support Flock button.  See you soon! 


[Boiling sound]  

In an earlier episode, episode number 29, I talk about looking at life as a simmer.  While we learn and grow, it is the time needed to become who we are meant to be, and rushing to a boil is a ton of energy that may put our lives in a state of frenzy. I say a bunch more about ingredients, recipes and such, and I’ll have a link in my show notes, of course, but what if we do that zoom up and out thing?  You know, like we can do on Google earth, where we take the focus off that one pot and now begin to see not only the stove, but the entire kitchen.


Let's imagine that on the stove, we see that there isn’t just one pot but actually two or three, all at different states of readiness. One pot may be for tomorrow’s lunch, prep work. The two others may be for dinner.  You know how it is, you have a well-loved and always utilized kitchen.  There is always something either just about to start or being cleaned up, or at least it feels that way!  


The fun part about using our imagination is that we can make the stove of ours big enough for six burners, or twelve or twenty!  This is your life analogy so as I progress, adjust accordingly.  You may have as many burners on the stove, or as many stoves as you like.  You also may use the pot to represent whatever you want.  Where, in my earlier episode I referenced a pot simmering as our life, but what if a pot was one area of your life?  You could have your career in one pot, or career options in several pots.  You could have family in one pot.  Things you are learning, you could have all in one pot or each thing you are learning is in its own pot.  You might have nine pots for your business alone, if you have your own business. 


The idea is that I want you to have this imagery, this analogy, for you to use as it suits you.  Let’s say for a moment that you are working on a big project for your career.  You decide to have a stove labeled career options, and you aren’t sure which one to pursue.


Let me pause for a moment, you know I always will ask you if your thought-deliveries are well sorted, and if you have a good gauge on who your future self is, and are you checking in with them often?  Assuming those are true, then try different things, and know that some “recipes in the pots” are going to cook up a lot quicker than you were expecting.  It isn’t until you taste it that you’ll know it is right for you, or maybe it smells super bad and oh, you know that isn’t going to work. So you either tear up that recipe, or you try it again and over time, perfect it to you and your family’s taste buds. 


While you are tossing a bad one down the drain, or maybe feeding it to your dog, (well, it wasn’t that bad after all) one of your other recipes finishes and it looks delicious, perfect but it wasn’t one you expected to be ready. You were really focused on another one. So much so, that you aren’t sure if this new one is worth trying right now.  Why not?  What do you have to lose?  Try it out, see what you think.  After all, that other meal on a burner might take a whole lot longer than you were expecting, and it may not be all you expected it to be, after all.  You know how recipes can be.


It also doesn’t mean that all of the other meals that are in prep mode, or simmering, that they just get thrown away.  All it means is that this one is ready now.  Imagine if you threw away everything else in the kitchen because this one meal was ready?  Seems a bit odd when we think of it that way, doesn’t it?  What if also, you imagine that the higher power in your life, should you have one, is like the head chef in the kitchen.  I tend to use the term Universe here, so anyone may plug in who their higher power is. But imagine that they aren’t telling you A, what you are making, and B, when your recipes will be ready.  [Ding] 


So they set the timer and the ding goes off with the chef stating, “pot A is done.”  Meanwhile, you were darn sure that pot C was the next thing you were about to serve.  So, of course, adjustments in your thought-deliveries need to be made.  You could spend your time yelling at the chef, complaining that you were ready to serve pot C and that needs a soup bowl, but pot A needs a plate, and you weren’t ready for that.  Or you could lean into the change, switch burners, grab the plates and get going.


Sometimes we do this in our life. We think we have a plan, we are focused on one thing, something else, another opportunity, pops up, and we decide that what we were working on is a complete waste.  We’re going to stop considering it at all and ever again, because this other thing showed itself to us first.  But what if instead of throwing all of that work away, you simply move it to a back burner, put it in a warming oven.  Oh, this imaginary kitchen has three.  Why not?   And you’ll have that other “pot” when you are ready to go back to it, should that happen. Then, there are those quick fry meals.  You know the ones you get for those days where you are busy juggling more than you should be and you toss something in the pan with a meal in minutes.  Those are exactly what you need some days, aren’t they? Or maybe most days for you.  Hey, it’s all good.  They serve their purpose and in life, sometimes we need little escapes (those quick meals) to gain perspective, until we have time to focus on our next project.  The way we escape doesn’t need to become our way of life.  It’s a quick fix, kind of like the top of our life’s toolbox.


What could this be for you in this analogy?  Maybe it’s a hobby that you need to take that allows your brain to think differently for a short time.  Now, I’m not going to tell you how exactly to use this analogy.  I trust you and your future-self.  Your GPS can figure that out.   As always, if you would like to see what materializes in your kitchen-of-life, sometimes the best meals are the ones that aren’t planned and are off the recipe.  You won’t know until you try them.  To dig into more detail with any of this, if you need accountability, or want me to cheer you on, all of this is included in my GPS Support Flock, of course.



The questions I have for you in this episode are, one, how many pots do you have on your stove?  And two, is this analogy useful?  All right, friend, check your thought-deliveries, train your Protector, become CEO, the Conscious Effective Olympian of your life, and always remember that you are amazing!  See ya!



Still listening? 

It is no shock that my last episode’s still listening section was talking about things I have simmering and then I was led to this episode.  I love when that happens. I’m a multi-passionate person, so in my kitchen, there are at least four or five stoves and most have something cooking on them at any point in time. It is where I am most happy.  Are you like that?