Sunday, February 19, 2012
Get In Your Own Way
As I was engaging in my favorite way to waste time and push all of my goals to the back burner (Facebook), I came across a post that said,
"The more you try to be someone else, the more you find yourself getting in the way."
And there it was, right there in black and white, before my very eyes, the main reason why my failures are failures. I'm trying to be someone I'm not.
I have this beautiful dream where I'm this calm, peaceful person all the time. Nothing bothers me, nothing makes me angry or sad. I make people think, but I don't cause trouble. People see me as the loving, compassionate, soft-spoken, Mother Theresa-type.
My real life friends are laughing their tushies off right now.
I know a woman who is all the things that I envision myself to be. Everyone loves and adores her. When she gets sick, people flock around her bedside and fight over who gets to help her. That must be a wonderful feeling; to have people want to do for you because they love you so much.
Or maybe I would feel like all those people are suffocating me.
For the longest time, I wanted to be just her. All my prayers and meditations would center around finding a way to be so peaceful and calm, that just being around me would make others peaceful and calm, too. But no matter how much I prayed, no matter how much I meditated, I never even came close to being like her. It's true, I have my peaceful moments. I am a kind and compassionate woman. I do genuinely care about others, and my first instinct is to love and not harm.
I'm a troublemaker, a wave-maker, a shit-starter. I don't mean that I'll see a person living a perfectly happy life, and then I'll go turn their whole world upside down. I mean that in my life, I don't accept the status quo. In fact, the status quo bores me to tears. I never automatically accept someone's word as law; I always ask questions. Sometimes I'm loud, maybe even a little obnoxious. Other times, I'm low-key, sitting back and being observant. I can be that peaceful, calm woman to whom others like to talk, but I'm not her all the time. I have two completely different sides to my personality.
And I love them both.
Somewhere along the lines, I got it in my head that my alter ego was "bad." People frowned because she challenged them and shook their heads because she would not be controlled. When you're young, being rebellious invigorates you, but when you're one month away from forty, and you still have some rebellion left in you, you start to believe that you haven't grown up.
It's just who I am. No matter how hard I try to deny my other side, she will be heard. No matter how much I try to be like someone else, she will get in the way.
I love her for that.
I love her for challenging me as well as others. I love her for helping me to question the beliefs that I'd been taught and to make my own decisions about what I choose to believe. I love her for protecting my heart when others try to hurt it. I love her for recognizing people, situations, and things that don't serve me well. I love her for doing all those things even though I try to suppress and ignore her. That's true love, y'all.
Today, on this chilly February afternoon, both of my personalities challenge you to get in your own way, if what you're trying to do is deny what truly makes you happy. You were given this life because you are the perfect one to live it. So do that.
LIVE...with no regrets because even your mistakes are the ones that you need to make to get you where you need to be. See how perfect you are? Even your mistakes are correct!
If only I had listened to Nikki Giovanni when I was in college...
Until next time,
Feed on love, subsist on peace, and don't deny your true self.
****To read Nikki Giovanni's poem, Ego Tripping, click here.