Terroir (pronounced tareˈwähr) is a French term used in viticulture (the cultivation of grapes) dating back to Ancient Greece. It refers to the idea that the environment of the grapes influences their unique flavor, aroma and character.
Epigenetic studies show us that it is the environment of the cell, not the gene, that signals it to fire toward health or dis-ease.
Jim Rohn, Motivational Speaker, said years ago, you are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with.
We know the environment we surround ourselves with—inside and out–is significant.
Even so, the average of the people you spend the most time with is not a superficial evaluation. Angels can show up as paupers with a spirit of true abundance and bright, shiny people of all variations can seem heart filling while syphoning off your joy.
You may be surprised to realize who is truly nourishing your soul and your future—and who is not.
In viticulture, terroir includes the soil the grapes are grown in, the typography, climate, sunlight, other plants around them, even the growers and winemakers.
In an article focused on epigenetic research to upend cancer, author Lynne McTaggart noted, “…But what prompts the turn of the switch is an environmental signal— from the air, water, and food we consume, the toxins we’re exposed to, or even the people we surround ourselves with.” And we could add to that our emotional, conscious and subconscious environment.
“You are what God is doing.”
~ Wayne Dyer
Years ago, a client sought a promotion, but was repeatedly passed over and met with excuses from her bosses. While her clients in the company loved her, she felt herself languishing in her 6 figure mid-level management coaching position amidst the drama and dysfunction of the company.
One day during our call, she had a eureka moment. Suddenly healing a wound and remembering talents, sensitivities and capabilities she’d tucked safely away since childhood in order to maintain relationships, she realized these were the very thing she needed to move forward in her work. She had still been living as if in the old environs and her current work environment reflected it.
With the roots of the problem and the years and branches of trauma gone, we finished the call and she went back to the office. Forty-five minutes later, she called her fiancé, then me, to report she’d been fired.
“This is perfect!,” she exclaimed. Sure, she was rattled and scared. It was not her expected idea of a promotion. She made good money, had responsibilities, and didn’t know what was next.
“There’s nothing I’ve lost that I want back.”
~ Morgan Richard Olivier
But she immediately saw how it fit with her intentions. Within the next hour, as requested, she emptied her desk of her belongings into a box, like the proverbial movie scene, and she walked out.
At home she refined the powerful intention she had previously written and on which she had been meditating. She kept dissolving her fears as they percolated to the surface, making sure she was going forward and not back for another round, refining her trust that it was already done in the unknown future.
Six weeks later she had a new offer. She took the negotiations slowly to soak it in because she could hardly believe the level of communication, genuineness, respect, and generosity she was experiencing with the executives at the new company. She wanted to give herself time to trust and believe it, to shape the position she really wanted. And she got it.
If her previous environment had been growing with her, it may have responded with a promotion, for example. But it wasn’t. Her environment had spit her out because in the course of an hour–the culmination of a lot of intentions coming together–she became greater than her environment. Beyond her mismatched circumstances and she no longer needed them. She was a treasured and fruitful grapevine and they thought she was a weed.
“One of the basic tenets of maintaining your life force energy
is to surround yourself with those who will support your journey,
and those who cause your life force energy to surge.”
~ Anita Moorjani, Sensitive is the New Strong
Tending your life force and new dreams is brave and courageous because inevitably, you will become greater than some environment you currently entertain. You never know who is coming with you and who isn’t. Pruning is a fact of blooming and becoming more fruitful.
If you can’t yet see who will join you in your new future, trust. They’re already there. I invite you not to turn back to who you used to be—just as a grapevine can’t go back into the vine it grew from—unless you want another round of what you’ve already experienced.
Life’s standing invitation is to become a greater light. Stay attuned to who you must become in order to maintain your current environs. Is this the terroir of You? Is it who you want to become? Are the elements of your terroir growing with you? Growing you? Is it mutual?
Pay attention, also, to who you are not becoming in order to maintain it. Our compromises on this can be subtle. There is much we can shift within ourselves, like my client above, and our environment will respond. We also must be mindful of what isn’t ours, who we are not, and stop taking it in in order to compel ourselves into our future visions—the vines, the grapes, the aromas, the characters we are here to become.
Here’s to more of You making an amazing world,