A few months ago, my cousin posted this picture on Facebook with a simple caption:

“Needed that.”

Her Mom, my Aunt, only added: “Perfect timing.”

Unbeknownst to me, my cousin had been wrestling with a decision about whether or not to take a coveted promotion. More money, more responsibility…along with more stress, more hours away from her husband and young daughter, and less flexibility in her schedule.


When she saw this sign, she said, her mind was made up.

If you pay attention, you’ll start to notice this trend happens in business, too.

Though the signs might not be as overt as a giant billboard, I assure you, they are there.

A company on the brink of disaster may have had multiple quarters of less-than-stellar performance. Employee tensions might be running high while morale is at an all-time low. Managers with open-door policies may have been holed away in meeting after closed-door meeting with top brass.

On the flip side, a go-getter who has consistently gone above and beyond for her firm may have landed a coveted new client, created an internal mentoring program and been publicly praised for her efforts by colleagues and the media.

In both instances, I’ll bet you can guess what happens next.

For better or worse, it’s about being aware of these connections. Seeing past what might otherwise be overlooked.

Personally, I pay attention when I seem to have a repetition of signs coming my way. I’ve had those messages appear in a multitude of ways — in dreams, through song lyrics, in a conversation about an entirely different (and unrelated) topic, in advertisements, listening to a speaker, while reading a book, and in making small talk with a stranger — so I have to believe that it’s more than just coincidence.

Finding that common thread of what’s resonating through disparate mediums is fascinating to me, and worthy of my attention. The fun is in deciphering those signs to figure out why they are appearing and what I need to do about it.

When my cousin posted that picture, I immediately commented on its attribution: “De La Vega.”

It was the first thing I saw.

Why does that matter? Because our beloved late Grandma Bernie’s maiden name was De La Vega. My cousin hadn’t noticed it and was blown away when I called it out, believing that she was getting a direct message.

Did I mention that this billboard was right outside her office?

As I reminded my cousin, sometimes it’s hard to see the things right in front of us.

© Amy Blaschka, 2017

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Amy is the president of rbp consulting, a consultancy specializing in helping transform organizations in transition. When she’s not involved in some sort of makeover, you’ll find her…unhappy. She enjoys being a badass writer, playing co-ed volleyball, and pretending she has her own HGTV show. She digs time with her friends and family, which includes a yellow lab named Rigby.

Need some help identifying and deciphering the signs? Contact Amy at rbpconsulting.org or say hi on Twitter.

Originally published at medium.com