Last week one of my clients confessed to me that, “I’m thinking of getting a tattoo.” I was amused for a moment, as this client is a high-powered top executive with a very conservative organization– and who has teenagers in the house.
The conversation continued, “I’ve always loved the Celtic symbol for Balance, and now that I’ve made such great progress toward living in balance much of the time, it would be a great reminder for me.” OK, that made sense. Then came a question that really caught me off guard:
“What would you get on your tattoo?”
At first, I recoiled from the question. I hold a lot of assessments about tattoos. Sometimes I think they are attractive (some are works of art!), sometimes meaningful (2 of my children got a guardian angel tattoo identical to the one worn by their deceased sister), and frequently incomprehensible (d’ya really think that huge gothic skull on the side of your neck is attractive?!). But never, never for me.
Still,the question reminded me of an exercise in which I participated a few years ago. The facilitator asked the question, “if you were get a tattoo — which is permanent and forever — what would it be, and where on your body?” I declared that I would tattoo the eight symbols I write every day in my journal, that represent my eight core values:
As for where on my body… I think my core values would need to be where I would see them every day, so perhaps on my upper arm or inside of my forearm.
If I had to go really simple, I might instead opt for the Yin Yang symbol, which for me represents balance and, on many levels, the truth about life — light and darkness, good/evil, life/work, etc.