Over the past few months I’ve been spending a huge portion of my time trying to set things up for Slightly Future Me so her day goes well and she feels cared for by me.

It’s a pretty interesting practice.

Last week I was on my vacation and things were going semi-disastrously. Nothing too big. Just a bunch of crappy, hard-to-take things.

So I sat down to figure out how I could make the next vacation more joy-filled and less challenging for Future Me. With six questions…

“What parts of now will turn out to be good for Slightly Future Me?”

The question.

Not that I have to appreciate all the things that are going wrong, because that would be annoying. I’m allowed to have my stuck.

Just: what’s the good — for her — that’s going to come out of all this hard right now?

The answer.

Oh, right.

I’m learning more specific things about creating ease. Setting things up to be more ease-filled for both now and next time.

Which means I’m also going to have to talk to the parts of me who are uncomfortable with ease.

is the experience that forces me to clear out the resistance so I can get better at making things sweet for me-who-is-arriving.

“If I were the Fairy Godmother…?”

The question.

If I were the Fairy Godmother for someone like me, what would I give myself to make my Pirate Queen Holiday happen with more ease?

The answer.

A pack of cards. Transition cards.

Like the Stone Skipping cards you made for the rallygators to use at Rally (Rally!).* You can pull a card and it will give you a reminder or a ritual.

*Now available in the Playground Toy Shop. Awesome. Thank you, me-from-last-week.

And a page of important and relevant Book of You highlights. Maybe in Dropbox so you can pull it up on your phone.

A case for a razor, so that you never ever accidentally cut yourself again.

The tiniest, sweetest little first aid kit, like the one you have in the Galley at the Playground, just in case you do get a cut. Though not from the razor, because that isn’t happening.

“If I had a Fairy Godmother…?”

The question.

If I had a fairy godmother who thought of everything, what would she give me for this vacation?

You don’t need to know. It’s a creative writing exercise. Invent!

The answer.

A small jewelry bag.

A case for your sunglasses.

A bedside altar. I mean, it’s not an altar. But it’s a box that turns into a tray, and it has all these little reminders of your you-ness, and you keep it by the bed when you’re away.

Checklists! Pre- and Post. Maybe printed on a card?

Something that’s like sovereignty boots, but smaller. Sovereignty stockings?

“If this were my boss and I was helping her…?”

The question.

Let’s say I worked for the CEO of a company. And I’m her fabulous Traveling Secretary. It’s my job to make her travels go smoothly and think of everything.

What thoughtful things do I pack for her so her vacation is nurturing and ease-filled?

The answer.

Little scissors in a tiny case.

Colored pencils.

A list of Useful Journaling Questions (like the exercise we’re doing right now?) that she can pick from.

Flannel handkerchiefs in a pretty case, like the ones we have at the Playground.

Interesting that just about everything I want/need falls in the category of things I already make sure my students have access to but never think to give to myself…

“If I were mentoring someone…?”

The question.

If I were mentoring someone and training her to eventually have my job and become the CEO, what information and gifts would I want her to have?

The answer.

Really good tweezers. In a little package. Dedicated travel ones. That cannot be forgotten no matter how forgetful she is.

(Not that she would be forgetful. But since this is the thing I always forget, it would be nice.)

The daily Hey Let’s Evaluate The Day question about what’s working and what we’re going to do differently next time.

A crisp and stylish CEO outfit to wear for checking into the hotel (always gets you a better room, and yet still I forget to show up in work drag).

Notes on why checklists maps, as I call them, are so important. Hint: it’s not just about not-reinventing-the-wheel.

And a designated Gwish Book for writing about her gwishes.

“What advice does Slightly Future Me have about this?”

The question.

Let’s ask me-in-the-future. What does she know? What’s her advice?

The answer.

Asking these questions right now is really important. It’s symbolically important.

How you travel reflects how you are in your business.

Each fix is setting up the future to have more literal and symbolic smoothness.

You need to be able to experience what it’s like to know/feel/trust that all doors open for you.

And until you’re at that point (it’s going to take a while), you need to set stuff up for yourself so you feel the smoothness.

You need to feel cared for so you can create. And so you can heal. Build these experiences of ease now so that you can believe in them.

Setting it up.

It’s kind of like being a football team. Or a roller derby pack. Only with versions of me playing all the roles.

Future Me is the striker. Yes, proper football that kind of football. And right now I’m making assists and setting things up so Eric Brunner can be this happy.

Future me is the jammer. And me right now is like Layla Smackdown, Smack Ya Sideways and Napalm Beth getting ready to do some damage so Sully Skullkicker can rack up the points.

Okay, maybe sports analogies… not the best. But that’s what’s on my mind.

Anyway, I’m making space for myself. And committing to making things good.

But not at the expense of me-right-now. Because that’s not what future me wants.

I’m taking care of myself now so me-to-come can be the kind of person who knows what that’s like. And I’m taking care of her so her world becomes all about being supported and loved.

And comment zen for today.

This is hard stuff. It’s a practice.

We all have our stuff. We’re all working on our stuff.

You are more than welcome to think out loud about setting things up to be better for Slightly Future You.

Or about this thing we call ease, and why it can be such a painful and resistance-filled concept.

We let everyone have their own experience and we don’t give unsolicited advice. xox

The Fluent Self