The Conductor Finally Sets Down His Baton

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Introducing June's Author of the Month, Kyle Elliott. Kyle and I became fast friends working at San Francisco State University. After going through what I'd call a self-worth crisis, we both read Shauna Niequist's Present Over Perfect, and realized we needed to change our lives if we wanted to feel nourished and fulfilled in our day to day's. This led to Kyle leaving his job and going full-time as a Career Coach, a very successful one. You can click the link in his bio to set up your own consultation! 

It is amazing what a year can do for someone. I barely recognize either of us from where we were at a year ago. We are much happier, joyful, and always filled to the brim with lattes :)


Hello! I’m Kyle Elliott – a friend of Jayme’s and the founder and career coach behind CaffeinatedKyle.com. Through my work, I help people navigate career and life transitions. I also help them find happiness. I love coffee (if you couldn’t tell), writing and eating the same thing at different restaurants. I also love sharing my whole truth; as such, I share this story with you so you may sit with me in my journey to slow down and find silence – something that is becoming a little easier for me each day.


The conductor keeps waving his baton faster and faster and faster.

The orchestra produces more and more music to keep up. But really, they just want to slow down. They just want a break. They just want to pause. They just want to breathe.

The conductor has been waving his baton for far too long. He won’t slow down. He won’t take a break. He won’t pause. He won’t breathe.

The conductor’s passion has allowed the orchestra to produce truly beautiful music.

The conductor’s passion has also drained the orchestra. They are incredibly tried. They are exhausted. They want to slow down. They want a break. They want to pause. They want to breathe.

The conductor is my compulsions. My need to keep going and going and going. My impulse to work on projects at 2 o’clock in the morning even when I’m exhausted.

The conductor is afraid that if he stops waving his baton and producing music, he won’t be able to start again.

While this has allowed the conductor to produce truly exceptional music, he has also exhausted the orchestra.

The orchestra is my drive to succeed and the music is my output — work, work, work.

The music that the orchestra produces is exceptional, but they never get to enjoy their music. The orchestra is exhausted. They just want the conductor to slow down so they can enjoy their own music. They just want to breathe.

They want the conductor to wave his baton a little slower. The conductor doesn’t even need to stop. He just needs to slow down so the orchestra can experience the music and catch their breath. So they can experience the music. So they can enjoy the audience and not be overwhelmed by the loudness.

The orchestra wants to push the conductor off the stage. They want to tell the conductor they are tired and out of breath. They want to end the busyness. They want to reap the rewards of the music they produce. They want to experience silence.

But they can’t push the conductor off the stage. They can’t gather the courage. So instead, they keep playing faster and faster.

Until someone in the ensemble stops playing.

And then another person in the ensemble stops playing.

And another person in the ensemble stops playing, until eventually only one person is playing.

The conductor notices, so he waves his baton faster and faster, with the hope that the audience won’t recognize members of the ensemble have stopped playing.

People in the audience do notice. It has become a solo performance. But to the conductor’s surprise, the audience starts clapping and cheering. They appreciate the show. While the ensemble was good, the soloist is even more beautiful. He is able to shine without being drowned out by the other members of his orchestra.

The conductor is in awe – he recognizes that he can slow down. That he can take a break. That he can pause. That he can breathe.

So the conductor sets down his baton and enjoys the music.

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