- 5-minute Journal-
- Podcast: Magic Lessons with Elizabeth Gilbert
- Visualize- This morning
- Exercise: Explanation to come
- Step towards Goal- (speaking to women/girls: building confidence, being true to themselves and dreams, etc.) Downloaded workshop led by the creator of TedTalks to prep for an upcoming speaking engagement
So, I broke my toe yesterday. The first bone I have ever broken in my life, after running multiple marathons, climbing mountains, jumping off cliffs, etc. I broke my toe. How you ask? Doing yoga. I specifically took a beginner’s class, (I have never taken a beginner’s class) so I would not do anything stupid my first time back. I will spare you the details. I did manage to finish the class. And I am going to maintain that this was absolutely NOT drama. I mean, I was in a yoga class. How much less drama can you get? I broke my toe, yes, but in a very zen-like, peaceful state. So, I’m going to say that my drama-free streak has not been broken. Yes, my toe looks like a science experiment, no I can’t put weight on it, but it just simplifies my decision-making process for which shoes I will wear (I always start with the shoes and go from there), and it gives me an excuse to put off running and having to re-acclimate to the altitude for a couple of weeks (just in time to ‘test the waters’ in San Diego).
All this to say, today is going to be my day off from exercise.
NOTE: For those of you who have never tried yoga. Don’t be scared. It’s an amazing practice that will bring you more peace and serenity than any other, in my opinion. And I can’t honestly say, in my 20 plus years of practicing, that I have ever known anyone who has broken a bone.
Podcast: Magic Lessons with Elizabeth Gilbert.
I am a huge fan of Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love). She is actually who inspired me to write my memoir, Summoning Magic (coming soon), and more importantly, she is such a beautiful, inspiring soul who is truly out to use her gifts to inspire/give to others.
She recently published a book, Big Magic (clearly a topic that I have an affinity for), that helps guide others in cultivating their creativity and passion. These podcasts are serving to help her spread her message and provide guidance to others.
What I really love about them is that she reaches out to ‘everyday people’, not just the most successful accomplished ones. And these are not just about writing, etc. Her insight and guidance can apply to anyone doing anything, whether it be starting a business or knitting, whatever it is that brings you joy and inspires you to do/be the best at that you can be.
This episode addresses the particular woman’s struggle with taking a leap and writing this book she has inside her. She already has proven herself as a great writer, starting a successful blog and consultant business, but her dream is to write/publish her book.
Her challenge. She is stuck.
Fear. It is the nemesis of creativity and accomplishing your dreams. It has many disguises: guilt, procrastination, perfectionism, insecurity, etc. We engage in all of these as an excuse to be less than…basically to protect ourselves from failure, in other words, rejection.
Her guest also admitted that she was riddled with guilt because she was worried about taking time away from her kids. They discuss how this is a near epidemic with mother/fathers. They feel like if they pursue their dreams or do something for themselves that will make them happy, they will in some way neglect or harm their children.
Gilbert quotes a celebrated author, A.S. Byatt, who is a mother/wife/artist. Basically, she states that it is because she is living her dream (whatever that dream is), that she is able to love those around her more completely. The time she takes to dedicate to herself, to being authentic and living her dream is crucial to animating her soul and prevents any tendency to feel resentment or regret for losing an important part of herself.
Elizabeth sums it up. “If you model martyrdom to your children, your children will grow up to be martyrs”. Alternatively, if you model creativity, passion, authenticity, healthy relationships, hard work, whatever it that represents who you truly are, that is 9 times out of 10 what your children will become.
Guilt: I am not a mother. But I know a lot of mothers, especially at our age with the ‘empty nest’ phase approaching, who have expressed similar experiences to me. I can imagine it feels like you can’t win at times. Everything you do or don’t do, you worry how it might impact your children. This can go in any direction. You feel like you didn’t give them enough time or attention, or you feel like maybe you gave them too much. Did your actions make them independent, too dependent? On and on.
I think this can apply to relationships as well. It is always a battle to find balance and healthy approaches to being a partnership while pursing your individual dreams. How much time is going to allow the relationship to grow and evolve versus either over or under nurturing it.
I do agree with Gilbert and have experienced this. If you give up your dreams, if you sacrifice the things that feed your soul and express who you truly are and what you truly want, you will eventually resent whoever you are making those sacrifices for. Or you will end up regretting the things you gave up because you thought you would lose the love, affection, acceptance, etc. from the people you sacrificed your dreams for.
Fear: This is an obvious one that I have brought up repeatedly. It’s the fear, right? We chalk it up to preparation or circumstances: We need to study more, learn more, research more, job search more, the time is not right, the circumstances aren’t right…on and on.
This is fear talking- fear of failing. Fear of disappointing the people you love, fear of rejection, fear of change, fear of the responsibility or commitment that your dreams/passions might require.
What I personally fear more is regret. My motto has always been “I would rather regret something I did do than something I didn’t.” I know, a bit cliché now, but I have been saying that since I was 19. And I have lived my life that way ever since. Yes, I have made some mistakes that I regret, but I can honestly say, when I look back on my life, I have really tried to pursue all the things that I knew would challenge me, make me grow, build my confidence, feed my soul, and get me closer to my dreams (even when I had no idea what those really were).
So, it all comes back to everything I have been hearing from all those out there living their dreams. Find your courage. Face your fears. Take action. Leap. 5-4-3-2-1. Even if it means you have to dial back other priorities for a period. If you are honest with yourself and those around you, they will understand. Even if there is resistance in the beginning, they will eventually respect you and want you to be happy and fulfilled. If they don’t, perhaps they no longer need to be an intimate part of your life.
Just something to consider…
So, enjoy the rest of your day. Hope it’s drama-free…and, please, be gentle with the toes.
Five-minute Journal: fiveminutejournal.com
Visualization: Mike Dooley (visualization tips: http://www.tut.com)
Podcast: Magic Lessons with Elizabeth Gilbert. I am