Do you every get caught up in the thick of thin things? When life gets so "busy" that you are running, balancing, rushing, pulling, getting, hustling, texting... you get the idea. All this is celebrated and honoured in the culture we live in today. So we keep doing it, filling our lives up with endless, meetings, activities and lists.
Oh the lists, the long glorious lists. Do you know that some studies have showed that just making the list can give us such a sense of accomplishment that we can subconsciously feel that we have done enough. Explains why some goals never get done.
Time is such a precious and limited resource. If we are not intentional about what our lives are being filled up with, it can very quickly be filled up with things that seem urgent, but are not important, even more scary, busyness can also be where we go to avoid the hard stuff.
I must confess I am a Master Avoider, I have my Master's Degree in Avoidance. The problem with being a coach and especially a coach with a very dominant Positivity talent, is am really good at re-framing things and taking the dark clouds and painting them with bright optimisim. It's really easy to recognise when you are sitting across from someone else, but not so much even when you looking intently in the mirror. (This is why is it so important for Coaches to have good Coaches.)
One of the other dangers of busyness is the lose of identity, especially if our busyness is centered around what others need us to be or fitting in. We can be so busy living up to or away from other people's expectations that it drives us to the end of ourselves. When you stop chasing, perusing and striving you might be sad to realise that you will never really be enough.
Knowing who we are is so important for each of our journey's and it is a journey that unfolds as you go. Today, I looked at a photo of myself in my twenties, I felt a real compassion for her as she beamed with her smooth glowing skin, eyes full of hope. I whispered to her, "it really does turn out well, but it's going to be so hard in places that you will forge a giant big shield to protect yourself from the hurts and disappointments you are going to face. Then one day you will learn that life is best lived without the armour, masks and shields and you will sit in the discomfort of pain, disappointment and hurts, you will not only live through them, but you will grow strong and beautiful. It's going to be okay."
I then found a letter from a beautiful encouraging friend that reminded me who I was and the book of birthday messages from 42 people she had painstakingly collected and arranged. The first message was from my mum, who past away a year and a bit ago as I read each message of what I meant to each of them I remembered who I am and I felt a huge shift within me.
I have loved moving to New Zealand, I know we are here for a reason, but it is easy to forget who you are when you trying to fit in all the time. Fitting in is exhausting, I will always be less than perfect when I trying to live up to some people's expectations, but Ralph Ellison puts it so well, “When I discover who I am, I’ll be free.” I belong here, and I know I have great value to add to my family, friends, clients and New Zealand. Today, I looked at the big rocks in my life and made a commitment to make them a priority, now I have a firm foundation and the little pebbles of life can fit around those, instead of the other way around.
I will end off with a quote by Mahatma Gandhi as I turn to face this new season with as Brenè Brown recommends a "strong back (knowing who I am), soft front (with empathy and vulnerability) and wild heart (all the way from Africa, pulsating with passion and purpose)
“The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” Mahatma Gandhi