Thoughts on a Hole [OG38]

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Thoughts on a Hole

Dec 2, 2021

Sharing some meditative thoughts about holes (yes, holes) with you today. We’ve all fallen into a hole at some point, speaking figuratively rather than literally, though maybe you have fallen into an actual hole.

I am celebrating my birthday this week and I am giving birthday gifts!! I want to give you a series of 3 coaching sessions. Email me at with ‘birthday gift’ in the subject line and we’ll connect to set up our first call. No strings, expectations, hidden sales pitches…. just me adding good into the world through you.

In future episodes, I’ll be featuring questions from listeners- other life owners like you. If you have a question, topic or situation you’d like for us to explore, email me at with ‘podcast question’ in the subject line.

What You’ll Learn From This Episode: Thoughts on a Hole

  • I’ll be releasing podcast episodes on Monday & Thursday during December. Ahem, if you subscribe, they come to you automatically.
  • An Autobiography in Five Short Chapters brings us to our first meditative moment around the idea of holes
  • A scene from West Wing features a different perspective of holes
  • I continue to celebrate my birthday by offering a gift of coaching for YOU!! I’d love for you to accept my gift.

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Thoughts on a Hole

Intro Music:
Welcome to An Owner’s Guide for Your Life, the podcast that combines psychology, coaching, common sense and fun. I’m Tracey Browning, an entrepreneur, life coach, and lover of people. Now let’s talk about how to live love, make money, and change the world.

Hey, I’m glad you’re here. This is episode 38, and I have thoughts to share about… holes. Before I do, do you know we’re in December? Which means November is behind us, which means I am done with the Daily Edition episodes that I was doing with the National Podcast Post Month Challenge. It was good. It was helpful for me, and I got good feedback from listeners, so thank you very much. What I’ve decided to do for the month of December is I’m going to be releasing an episode every Monday and Thursday. So twice a week, which feels like a schedule that is NOT stressful. Yeah, it’s challenging and it’s good. So you’ll hear from me twice a week. And if you’ve subscribed on whatever platform you’re listening to me on, you get them automatically. So that’s another reason to subscribe.

Now thoughts on holes. Now this first one is really more of a meditation and you might have heard it before. It’s called Autobiography in Five Short Chapters by Portia Nelson.

Chapter I.
I walk down the street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I fall in. I am lost. I am helpless.
It isn’t my fault.
It takes forever to find a way out.

Chapter II.
I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I still don’t see it. I fall in again.
I can’t believe I am in the same place.
It isn’t my fault.
It still takes a long time to get out.

Chapter III.
I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I see it there, I still fall in.
It’s habit. It’s my fault. I know where I am.
I get out immediately.

Chapter IV.
I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I walk around it.

Chapter V.
I walk down a different street.

Now this is a popular story to use for meditation. So sit with it and see where your thoughts take you. What habit or pattern or person or relationship does it bring to mind for you? What chapter are you in? Chapter two? You can’t believe you’re in the same hole again. Maybe you’re walking around the hole in chapter four, different places, different things. I believe life provides us, and I started to say that life confronts us, but confront just kind of feels too strong and too negative- that life provides us with the lessons that we need to learn and then we learn them. Maybe it takes a long time to learn the lesson. Maybe the autobiography is longer than five chapters for you about whatever person or habit or pattern that’s come to mind. And maybe it’s 27 chapters long. I don’t know, but we learn the lesson and then we need to be reminded often that we learned the lesson.

And, you know, life is not all about being in chapter five, being in whatever the last chapter is where you’re finally walking down a different street. Think of the beauty, the pain, the experience, the wisdom, the love that you’ve gained during the first chapters. Those chapters are what get you to the different street. And I know so often, especially if it’s a really painful, deep hole that we’ve fallen into, all we really want is to not be in the blasted hole at all. Oh, and sometimes we just want to rush through it, just get out of the hole, but savor that experience, learn from it. And yes, learn as quickly and efficiently as you can, but learn from that experience to get to the different street.

Now another meditation. Thoughts about holes, which is interesting. Okay. Really? Yeah. There’s more than one about holes. This is actually a scene from the TV show The West Wing, and one of the characters is telling the story to a friend of his who’s struggling with PTSD. So here’s the story.

Guy walking down the street falls in a hole. The walls are so steep he can’t get out. And a doctor passes by and the guy shouts up, “Hey you, can you help me?” So the doctor writes a prescription, throws it down the hole and moves on.
And then a priest comes along and the guy shouts up, “Father, I’m down in the hole. Can you help me up?” So the priest writes out a prayer, throws it down in the hole, moves on.
Then a friend walks by, “Hey, Joe, it’s me. Can you help me out?” And the friend jumps in the hole. Our guy says, “Are you stupid? Now we’re both down here.” And the friend says, “Yeah, but I’ve been here before and I know the way out.”

I love that story.

Sometimes we are the one stuck in the hole, shouting up, trying to figure out, how do we get out? Help me, help me. How do we get out?

Sometimes we might be the friend who’s been there and knows the way out.
Sometimes you don’t want somebody to just pull you out. Sometimes what you need, you just need someone to acknowledge your difficulty. I see you. You’re in a tough spot. I’m here for you. I’ve been there before, I know the way out. It takes grace and courage, whichever person you are, the one stuck in the hole or the one offering the assistance. And I know I’ve said it before, but it’s worth saying again, that in our culture of glorifying, strong independence- I can do it myself- that makes it so hard to ask for help sometimes, but there is nothing in the world wrong with asking for help, whether it’s professional help from a therapist or a coach or somebody who has skills that you need. Maybe you need a good accountant. Maybe you need a business manager. Maybe you need an assistant. Maybe you need someone who’s got skills in an area. You don’t have those skills. There’s nothing wrong with not doing it all yourself.

For me, that’s one of the lessons I take away from the second thoughts on holes, but I like them both, and I encourage you to spend some time thinking about them. What comes to mind when you just sit quietly and think about where are you in the process? Are you hitting the same holes in the sidewalk? Are you learning how to avoid them? Are you walking down a different street? Are you jumping in a hole to help somebody out? Because you’ve been there before and you know how to get out. So enjoy those stories as you think about them.

Now, I want to leave you with this. I am still celebrating my birthday this week [dog barks loudly in the background], and that’s my dog telling me, happy birthday yet again. So I’m leaving that in. So my birthday was Monday. I’m still celebrating, and I am celebrating by giving away some gifts. I want to offer a birthday gift to you because I think it’s fun to give gifts. I’m offering a package of three coaching sessions. No strings, no fee, no money. It’s my birthday gift to you. Just because I happen to like the number three, I’m going with three sessions. It’s really to give you a taste of coaching. Maybe you need some perspective on your life. Maybe you need me to jump down on the hole with you and say, hey, I’ve been here before. I know how to get out. Whatever it is, we got three sessions. Maybe you just wonder what it’s like to work with a life coach.

Here’s your chance. Take me up on my offer. I would love to give you a birthday gift to celebrate my birthday. And you’ve listened to me. You know, I don’t do hard pitches. We’re not going to get into the drama and pressure. No, this is really just about three free coaching sessions. My birthday gift to you. I just want to put some more good out into the world. So take me up on my offer. All you have to do if you’re interested. Email me Send me an email. Put ‘birthday gift’ in the subject line, and we’ll connect and set up a time for our first call.

All right, my friends, let’s go live, love, make some money and change the world.

For a transcript of this episode or for more information about life and mindset coaching, visit my website

By |2021-12-02T09:02:45-05:00December 2nd, 2021|Podcasts|0 Comments