Sympathetic Magic

It was only my second job as a project manager. My last contract lasted barely a cup of coffee and I was scared.

I wanted good things to happen. I invoked some sympathetic magic.

Have you heard of this? It’s a like-begets-like situation. One of my favorite examples of sympathetic magic has to do with older medicines. If a plant looked like a foot, it was considered to be a foot medicine. The Ginger root, since it looked like a little person, was considered to be very beneficial to the whole body. It’s been highly prized for its healing properties.

In this new scary work environment, I wanted to bring a little magic with me to ensure my success.

I chose a big orchid. I put it out where everyone could enjoy it. Some of my new co-workers commented and thanked me.

But my new boss hated the sight of it. To be honest, she hated the sight of ME.

How could she hate me? She barely gave me a chance. And these flowers were so pretty, surely, they would win her over just like I would.

I wanted the flowers to bring beauty, life and growth into my job. But they only brought resentment.

That orchid bloomed like crazy in that office. And I made the biggest project plan of my life. But boss lady hated us more with every passing day. She would drum her dramatic fake nails on the conference table where they sat.

The day I was escorted out with my box the orchid was still blooming. I could say the sympathetic magic didn’t work. There was no growth for me there. No delight and no beauty.

My magic flowers did serve to show immediately how resistant this boss was to my presence. I did know that that box-walk of shame was coming. I just hoped it wasn’t.

I’ve been feeling yucky and stuck the last few weeks. Something needed to change. Where could I find some creative juices? Everything has been shut down.

That’s no way to think. I find what I’m looking for. So where can I find creativity happening?

People gathering and expressing themselves. That must be happening somewhere.
Yes. Sunday night jazz bands on the patio. I’d seen them doing it by the Sushi shop for years. Last Sunday I packed up my laptop and sat in the audience.

The speakers were overdriven but the juice was flowing. Words poured out.
This time, the magic worked. I have a totally different sense of what is possible. It was like my efforts were suddenly going downhill and could pick up speed.

It seems like magic is a little mysterious. My magic didn’t get me what I hoped for the first time. But that was no reason to give up on it. I’m glad I didn’t.