Kim and me, shooting a wedding, Canon Rebel Xti
I just grabbed the title from Brene Brown’s latest post, little boxes. I love what she wrote about the boxes that we put ourselves in and how living outside of them, how living authentically and vulnerably can be scary.
She asked her readers to fill in the blanks and I’d love for you to do the same:
Sometimes it’s hard because I am _______________________, but I’m also ___________________________.
Mine is this: Sometimes it’s hard because I am a mom, but I’m also a painter, a wife, a jewelry designer, a writer, a photographer and a life coach.
Sometimes I wish I could just pick one thing.
I have this fantasy that if I could just finally pick that one thing, then I could be masterful at it, an expert, not this jane of all trades half-ass person. That’s my box. My gremlin that tells me that if I could just FOCUS and be one thing, then I would be successful, happy, and really good at something. I would finally be doing it RIGHT.
I had a reading with my tarot reader Lauren recently and posed this question to her. “Do you think I should just finally pick one thing? I have like five jobs and I’m going a little crazy.” Part of me wanted her to just tell me what to do, to say, The cards are telling me that you need to let go of ______ and just do _____. This is your surest way to joy and success. But of course she didn’t. Instead she said, “Actually, you are really good at juggling all of those things. You love them all equally, and you are amazing at weaving in and out of them. At best, I think different things will be more of a focus at different times of year.”
In the end, she is right. I wouldn’t be happier doing just one thing because I would miss being all of my parts. Do all of your parts get expressed in your life? Is your dancer, your lover, your painter getting any airtime?
Last night during my Nia class, the words Nothing is wasted got stuck in my mind. As I searched for what it meant to me, I thought about the class I am about to teach at Squam. I thought of my gremlin voices that criticize me for not having lots of technical expertise when it comes to photography, or not being a master coach, or a black belt at LIFE or whatever. But in that moment I could see something clearly: Nothing, no experiences or education, no twists and turns in my life have been wasted. Everything I have ever loved or experienced will make its way into this class. Even my limitations will serve me… (Have you ever noticed that there is a freshness, a creativity, a beginner’s mind quality to people who don’t know the “right” way to do something?
I was suddenly filled with compassion for myself, and for all of us who are questioning ourselves and our paths, wondering if we blew it way back when or should have studied this or that, or wasted our time doing x, y, and z. Nothing is wasted dear people. We can use all of it. And if we can be masterful at anything, it’s being ourselves.
I plan to do that this week.