The New Well of No and of NO in kNOwing.

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Already having listed up to about 80 wells, I had to smile when this one showed up last week. It clearly was not in my top 10.


Most wells solicit an automatic “yes!” to visiting them. I know what I draw up will be exquisite even if simple in nature.


I am not quite sure about assigning the word “exquisite” to the new well.


As I was writing about it, it occurred to me that the word “knowing” contains “no.”


The new well is the Well of No and because I don’t have it all sorted yet, might be the Well of No in kNOwing.


This is how it showed up.


Caveat – my experiences are not necessarily the experiences of others – ever – but in this case, my relationship to Instagram. I know it is positive for many.


Though I choose to stay on Facebook despite my tenuous relationship with social media, Instagram has never felt appealing to or resonant with me. Even so, there was something about it that felt like a “should,” particularly to use in connection with my work.


Several years ago, I followed the protocols for creating a business Instagram account, which meant I had to create a business Facebook account. I did both.


I posted a few times on Instagram, still not enthralled.


So, to try to be enthralled, I engaged an Instagram coach to help me learn how to use it well.


After paying her to teach me all the ins and outs, the result was my own, “No, this is not for me” on several different levels. I have paid a couple of people to teach me skills, only to realize that I paid to honor the truth that they were not for me. It’s not that they weren’t just “for me.” They were not and are not me.


Ultimately, a stranger, a hacker, a whatever the word is took over my Instagram account and began soliciting money. I was unable to ever get back into my account, taken down by Instagram.


Fast forward to the last few weeks. Instagram came up again as a viable marketing tool, again with the hint of “should.”


I decided to try just one more time.


“Just one more time” turned into a huge, “NO! Did you not hear the first time that Instagram is a ‘no’ for you?”


It was, again, taken over by someone else, perhaps the same one that stole it before.


So here I was back to Instagram informing me my account had gone against Instagram rules, that it was deactivated and will be deleted in 6 months. The message indicated I could appeal the decision; however, you must have a password to do that and however my account was taken over meant I could not use my password or change it.


The final decision about Instagram was made for me.


And of course, the little gremlin in the back of my head is saying, “See Dawn? You did not follow your own intuition – again.”


In this case, the great big “NO” was welcomed with some humor because the no was already in my kNOwing but I had chosen to ignore it.


With this came the creation of the Well of No and my saying yes to it.


Here’s the reason this well doesn’t feel quite as exquisite as most.


Or maybe a better way of thinking about it is that I go to the wells for which I am deeply grateful eager and relieved to arrive at them. I can hardly wait to see what I receive from them and take away for continued nourishment.


Yes, I am grateful for some no’s the minute they happen. I’ll smile and take this one as a grateful no…a no that saved me from what I felt lack of resonance from the beginning.


But then I have a whole collection of stories of no’s that perhaps could fall into the category of “exquisite” or “grateful” only after long times of wondering about that answer and of reflection.


The challenge of coming to this well is the no’s that are still what I call “live no’s.” Like live wires that I do not want to touch.


These are no’s for which I am not grateful (yet) or for which there is an uncomfortable dance of the paradox of grateful/not grateful.


Some of the “live no’s” call me to honesty, to a reckoning with myself as I wrestle with them. They take a lot of life review and wondering.


Maybe in all these there is a way in which “no” is “yes.” I simply don’t know the “yes” part yet.


I am reminded all the time of Jeffrey Davis’ work on wonder and the notion of wonder existing with or as I think of it, pairing with, bewilderment.


A no can be bewildering, and it can still be cloaked in the perspective of wonder.


So welcome to the Well of No or the Well of No in kNOwing.


I am in the beginning stages of dipping into this well. Curious. Open. Listening. Playing with.

Dancing. Writing. Dialoguing with others. Exploring and perhaps a bit of excavating.


I am curious how this is experienced for you, and if it is not something to share out loud, perhaps taking time to play with it through musing as you walk, journaling, sipping a cup of tea or gazing up at the night sky.


It was hard to choose a photo to go with this, but the one I chose shows how this is, so far, the well I at times want to leave covered.

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2 Comments. Leave new

  • This resonated with me! I recently was offered an opportunity to teach four more Yoga classes a week, to seniors. I love teaching seniors.

    The times and days definitely didn’t work for my schedule. Conflicted w/caregiving. I have a full plate and have assured myself I won’t take on anything new. And yet. And yet. I wrangled and wrestled and began to explore What Ifs. Maybe if I….

    Luckily, my kNOwing did begin to speak, loud enough so I couldn’t ignore it. I came to my senses and gracefully turned down an offer I would have loved to receive a few years ago.

    That’s one example of several that have appeared for me lately.

    Here’s to honoring our KNOWING and NOing! Thanks for this post.

  • Robert Kahn
    June 13, 2023 6:03 am

    My well of NO or no in kNOwing keeps me grounded. Self restraint has kept me out of other wells that may prove to be “downers”. Being in this well has also made my happier wells happier!


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