Making Spiritual Down Payments

Without down payments, I would have missed my graduation ceremonies,  a hitch-hiking trip around Europe, a Porsche, and a few house deals.

Selling shoes as a teenager meant servicing many pairs of feet before a particularly gorgeous graduation gown could be mine.  Suddenly the shop owner was beside me explaining the lay-away plan without even asking my age.  It would only take one small down-payment, she explained.

She represented the epitome of a business superwoman.  Then she became part saint after my ninth visit to touch the dress.  Its silken and glorious whiteness and pearled bodice stayed as magnificent as memory provided.

Packed carefully in a box, I carried the dress home one week before graduation.  I rode the bus prepared to apply karate to any obstruction or deterrent.

Over time, the price tags contained more numbers, risks and conditions.  Contracts became more complex.  Transactions began to incorporate other people.  Diligence, follow-through and commitment played a significant role.  Nevertheless, enthusiasm overrode fear and down-payments opened doors to otherwise insurmountable achievements in my life.

Down Payments Lead to Beauty - Moon Outside My Home

Today, I wanted to make another down-payment.  I decided to make a contribution towards the evolutionary Transformation of our planet – a tad bigger goal than buying a house.

I decided to deal with a situation that did not sit well in my soul.  I wrote to a business that has not lived up to the sales pitch that motivated my doing business with them.   I explained my point of view with no inflammatory words, just facts from the heart.

I closed by explaining that they will lose my business if they respond condescendingly, with quotes from their policy manuals or philosophies from their mission statements.   I invited them to be creative because clients are not longer willing to live without authenticity and service.   They may not care, but I know they will remember my email.

I gave them one tiny starfish to put back in the water.  I sent them a hummingbird that is capable of putting a drop of water on a fire.

I exercised my power to make a small spiritual down-payment.  It took a white graduation dress and several joyous occasions to convince me that no matter the size, my down-payment will take me to matching the numbers on our planet’s evolutionary price tag.

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63 thoughts on “Making Spiritual Down Payments

  1. Sometimes companies actually care what their clients think and feel and some don’t, but the more important thing is what is in our hearts. No matter their reaction, you will be content in your decision. If you’re like me, you enjoy being able to sleep at night.

  2. The important thing is to take your drop of water and do it. And you have.. well done. keep us informed about how it goes. Some of these companies have facebook pages too which makes your statement more public. If they lose you as a customer they should know why.. c

  3. Pingback: Buying as a Spiritual Act | The Green Ink Well

  4. Hi,
    Good on you for letting them know how you feel. Every client should be important no matter how big or small. I hope you get a very nice response from them, if not it says a lot about the company.

    • Magsx, some situations cause one to feel the client is there to serve the business. Where there is little or no competition, we’re romanced into signing and are at the mercy of whatever changes the company deems necessary. Having managed a Senior Residence, I feel vigilant about what that does to seniors who are not sure how to maneuver their way through “today’s” hoops.

  5. Never dealt too much with with down payments always preferred to deal with cash-and-carry…thinking that I never knew what tomorrow would bring…still I loved the post.

    • I always feel good when I speak up, Barb. Doing it with more emphasis on the heart than on the intellect feels even better. It’s a challenge to write from the heart and not be “emotional”.

  6. “I explained my point of view with no inflammatory words, just facts from the heart.”

    You’ve perfectly stated one of my New Year’s resolutions. This one will give back in good measure. Wonderful words, souldipper!

  7. Spiritual downpayments: we make the payment and then the dress could come from an entirely unexpected direction. I firmly believe we reap what we sow, but surprise seems to be the heart of the hudtevb

  8. A small spiritual down-payment…oh Amy that touches a sensitive chord! It is so very important to stand up to be counted for all we believe in and none of it is too small to be insignificant…
    Loved the memories of the down payments in your life starting from the gorgeous graduation gown…:)

    • Exactly, Shama. If we don’t stand up, we cannot cry over not being counted. (I cannot remember giving up that dress, but it obviously left my closet for someone else to enjoy.)

  9. Amy, I particularly like how you held the company to task by heading off the reflexive fall-back to company policy. It doubly annoys me when I spend time crafting a letter like you describe only to recieve a canned policy reply. I hope your letter shakes someone up enough to effect change. If not, I’m sure you will at least have jarred the person whose desk it lands on into thinking. That alone is a start. Good way to start off the year.

  10. LOL! I left the keyboard and the cat pressed send, adding her own contribution. Apologies. I have just returned to find my comment posted, Amy….I was going to say: I firmly believe we reap what we sow, but often the results can come from an altogether unexpected direction: a quite different source. I hope your downpayment reaps dividends :-)

    • That is so funny, Kate! When I saw it, I thought…what are those Brits up to now? I’ll have to google that. :D

      My example is purposely very simple. Since it exemplifies that we have opportunities to take just the first step, it may encourage all of us to consider making the bigger down payments…the bigger step. Like those kind that make us display who we really are.

  11. I love this title, “Making Spiritual Downpayments”! I like the message about remaining positive, especially. Usually I wade through a myriad of feelings prior to being able to address a situation, Amy. For me, the message to remain “in” the positive is strong. Another great reminder! Thank you!

  12. This is such a good reminder for us all in dealing with similar situations. I find I get much better results when I deal kindly with customer service issues…not that I always succeed, unfortunately.When I managed hospice, a lot of times families would take out the pain and anger by complaining about something. It helped me in those instances to remember where it came from. Great post, Amy.

    • Just hoping that readers who may believe their voice doesn’t matter can see that it’s always worth our while to speak up. I remind myself to hold my tongue if I can’t say it with love. Your example is perfect, Victoria. It seems your insight flavoured your words with compassion.

  13. Since you are such a positive inspirational messenger, I have nominated you for The Candlelighter Award. You can find more information about the award, started by Kate Kresse at Believe Anyway. All you have to do is receive the award, copy and paste The Candlelighter Award photo from my site to yours. Once you have done that, you can then pass the award along to others.

    Thank you for being a light in the world!

  14. How cool. :-)

    People found me a bit…strange for sending off thank yous to plumbers, roofers and carpenters. I wanted to encourage them for jobs well done, commending conduct that needed commending and recognizing service that really counted. (serious–when a basement’s flooding……ack!!!!)
    It’s a good thing when that carries over into work values.

    I don’t think we do enough of that talking to providers.
    It’s a good time to do that.
    It’s becoming a ‘data driven’ world. I’m not sure I like all aspects of that, but….
    Becoming a satisfied/dissatisfied customer ‘matters’.

    And after writing that, I’ve paused–cuz I’m now thinking….dangitall. LOL

  15. You did right thing by speaking the truth. There is nothing better than explaining the truth to the person you deal with honestly. We all need to learn this aspect of life. Great post.

    • Thank you so very much, Shelton. Your comment is so clear and strong. Having a motive of Love facilitates class and eloquence. It’s Grace. Remarkable results happen – some we just don’t see.

  16. My word look at all the comments – we all agree with you. Have you had a response yet from the company?

    I am in middle of a problem with one of our airlines. We pay $25 per checked bag without thinking but to make me pay $150 to put my airmiles back in my account because I didn’t use the ticket when my mother passed away and which they charged me $100 to use in the first place and on airmiles that are supposed to be FREE (sorry for using caps)? good gracious! I just spoke to the airline and said to the guy “you’re mean”. He said “those are the rules madam”

    • So, Rosie, is there a really creative way of letting them know that the rules are pure unadulterated intellect – with no heart? See, corporations write up these magical rules that we, the CLIENT, are supposed to simply swallow. They get to move the goalposts and we are supposed to happily pay. That’s the kink!

      It’s not worth getting stressed about, but when it sits in our gut like an irritant, it’s good to figure out some way to say it from the heart! If it falls on deaf ears, at least you gave it a good try.

      But the recipient won’t forget a letter or message from the heart! Guaranteed.

  17. Thought you might be iunterested to know that this post has inspired me to try again with AT&T. For more than a year now I have had poor service that up until I started dealing with them, I would have thought it was impossible! . I started out corresponding with them in a civil manner, but I never received a satisfactory response, but it escalated into a rather snide ande cynical tone. I have yet received NO RESPONSES WHATSOEVER! But, now that you suggest making it a spiritual quest, I have come to realize that perhaps it was my approach that has been wrong, so I am going to give it yet another try!

    Thank you, as always, for inspiring me Amy! I hope sopmeday I can do the same for you! I’ll let you know how this all pans out!

    XO Paula

    • Won’t this be interesting? As one of my mentors says, “When hearts speak, hearts hear.” It’s worked for me so I hope the best for you, Paula.

      The other technique that works well is to go to them with no preconceived results: “I have this problem…. Since you know your companies methodologies, please tell me what you are able to do?”

      I use this in Government alot – esp. when I worked in Educational Financial Admin. This approach removed the defensiveness and showed them I was open to listen and work with them. As a matter of fact, most often I ended up with a better solution than the one I was hoping for.

  18. The most important thing is you were TRUE to yourself and your beliefs and convictions. And you never know, even if the company itself doesn’t do anything, the actual person reading your letter just might!

  19. Thank you for this lovely reflection!
    This insight speaks loudly to me: “enthusiasm overrode fear and down-payments opened doors to otherwise insurmountable achievements in my life.”
    I am exploring the concept of patience as in I diligently prep the soil (wow, I “accidentally typed soul”), plant the seeds, then allow them to germinate and blossom without me hovering and checking..so of course your reflection is presented to me. Thank you!

    • Many thanks for your visit, Joy. It’s good to learn that you found encouragement here. Putting your focus and attention on patience is noble, indeed, since life often gives us many opportunities to learn when we open ourselves to these growth efforts.

  20. There are letters I want to write – one in particular, to a particular company (mail order catalogue company) and this has give me food for thought about how to write it. Thank you.

  21. Very intriguing title Amy. I never guessed it’s your enigmatic version of ‘planting spiritual seeds’. This post should be on a religious, or more precisely, on a spiritual journal or site.

  22. A drop in the fire that is all it takes. And the perseverance. But so hard at the same time, no? I would have been proud of myself doing what you did, stand up for what you believe in. Your lesson is very inspiring. We should not be intimidated by even the greatest goals. Just get started with the down payments. Brilliantly written, souldipper!

  23. Ah! I am just mulling over how I will handle my dorp in the fire with AT&T U-verse and the most distressingly disappointment of U-verse, which is making it hard to visit blogs, among other things. I went online after the fact to see about review. Many so poor and others absolutely angry.

    Time for us all to ask these companies to come through as promised.

    Good post, Amy.

    • I’m still disappointed with companies around here. One has to continuously switch companies to acquire the best deals…we always have to be a “new” client. Pretty soon they’ll cut off “previous client” status.

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