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The Day I Chose the "Wrong" Crayon and How It Changed My Life

11 May, 2019 | Posted by Jean Haner

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Decades ago, I had an experience that probably lasted all of 60 seconds, but it still deeply influences me to this day. It wasn't some big spiritual breakthrough or amazing "aha" moment.
In fact, it left me feeling quite awful for a while.
I was at a personal growth workshop taught by a famous author, one so popular that many people attended over and over every year. One of the first exercises was to choose some crayons and draw a picture of how you saw yourself at this moment in your life.
The teacher set a basket of crayons in the middle of the room, and I was astonished to see all the experienced people, who'd been through this before, dive for it like their life depended on it! The crowd of people blocked me from even getting close to the basket, so I just hung back politely until I could find a space. I saw them all leaving with handfuls of blue and green and yellow crayons and by the time I got there, the only colors left to choose from were black, red, and brown. I had been thinking of drawing a tree because that represented how I felt at that time, growing skyward, branching out in all kinds of wonderful directions.
Well, I thought, I guess I can use the brown for the trunk and branches, and just make it a beautiful autumn tree with red leaves. So I set about drawing the tree. When we'd finished our drawings, the teacher came around to evaluate each one. When she saw mine, she looked me in the eyes and told me it was obvious I was an angry person and I needed to work on some serious issues.
I felt like I'd been slapped. I asked her why she saw that in my picture and she said it was because I'd chosen to make the leaves red.
"But by the time I got to the basket of crayons, that's all that was left!" I said. "I'd wanted to make the leaves green but there were no more green crayons."
And she stared at me with a contemptuous smirk. And then walked away. That smirk said it all.
She was telling me that my rationale was total BS—that there are no accidents. There was a reason I ended up with those colors. And the reason was that I had serious anger issues. But I knew that while I had a lot of issues (!) anger wasn't anywhere near the top of the list.
And I also realized why all the experienced people grabbed the other crayons—they knew what the "wrong" colors were and wanted to avoid them at all costs! But despite knowing all this—I still felt so judged. My energy plummeted, my spirits sagged. I just wanted to drop through a hole in the floor, I felt so diminished. But I stuck it out—I went through the rest of the workshop, hoping it would ease me out of that initial bad experience.
It didn't.
What I saw time and time again, was a judgmental and simplistic "one-size-fits-all" approach to the participants.
And I vowed that if I ever taught workshops, I'd be a teacher who recognized how special each of us is and create a system that honored that uniqueness.
I never imagined that over the following decades I'd actually end up writing four books and teaching workshops that did just that!
But in fact, there was a reason I ended up with the wrong color crayon…
It wasn't what that teacher assumed. I didn't have anger issues. But I did too easily give away my power to others. And in that experience I had yet again let someone disempower me. So the contemptuous smirk on that teacher's face was the beginning of a real transformation for me, personally and professionally, to help me claim my power.
And it also helped me create more deeply evolved and joyful experiences for you, to help YOU clear whatever is blocking you in life.
You may not have the same issues I had with giving away my power. But I'm sure you can identify what you'd like to move beyond—and toward. And that's why I designed the Clear Home, Clear Heart retreat at 1440 the way I did, to create a safe place where you won't feel confronted, judged, or wrong. To instead help you open infinite new possibilities for your life, in gentle but powerful ways that honor your personal truth.
Clear Home, Clear Heart
Jean Haner
August 4 - 9, 2019
Energy clearing is a gentle yet powerful way to release old, limiting patterns of thought, emotion, and behavior that can keep you from being a creative force in your life. Join intuitive empath Jean Haner and discover an elegant approach...
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In this workshop, we clear the energy of your present, past, and future selves, and we even do ancestral clearings back through your entire family line, to free you from inherited patterns. You'll learn how to no longer be so affected by the energy of the people and places around you. And you'll learn how to do energy clearing as well, so you emerge with tools you can use for the rest of your life.
And just a PS: no crayons required.

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