Letting My Little Light Shine
Moments Of Inspiration

Getting Out Of My Own Way

July 14, 2017

Why is it that we humans must be goaded or dared into action? Why can’t we simply do things for ourselves? Why is it easier to do it for someone else?

Just this evening, I was subtly, though publicly “called out” on Facebook. Not in an unkind way whatsoever but simply along the lines of, “I haven’t seen what you have written lately. Can you share it?” To which I respond in my head with, “Crap, now I have to write something.”

What? I have been pondering something all day – why did it take someone asking for my writing for me to sit down and DO it? (To be honest, I haven’t posted in a couple weeks even though I have written some stuff that I wasn’t happy with – more on that later.)

This particular person knows that this website is very important to me and she’s well aware of how we humans get in our own way as we work towards our goals. So thank you, Jenn Widney, for getting me to my computer so I can share about my day. Because I did have a post in my head and your suggestion just made me get off my ass and get out of my own way.

Isn’t that the truth of it? We get in our own way when it comes to doing things we want to do, but add another person to the mix and it gets done. I am so glad I shared my dream with someone (actually there’s a few of you out there) who nudge me to get it done. Otherwise, it may still be a dream and not a reality.

And so what was that post that was bouncing around my brain all day?

For those of you who don’t know, I work as a virtual assistant from home. This allows me the flexibility I need to be home with my son and still be productive and creative. I love my work and I love my kid and this offers me the best balance, even though at times they seem to be competing loyalties. In order to get my work done, I schedule my time but I keep things flexible because life happens. I am quick to respond to the needs of clients, family, and friends, but I’ll often leave my work, like this blog, until last. I procrastinate by not prioritising me. Oh look it’s me getting in my own way again – and giving me an out so I don’t have to be accountable for my goals.

But sometimes, me not doing my work is me living my dreams and so it was today. I am an involved parent and I want my son to know that I am available and that I love and support him. So today was a more family focused day so I can live this part of my dream. I took most of the day off and went to our local beach with my son and his friend. I told myself I was doing this for him, but it turns out I reaped some surprising rewards.

Today, I started thinking about how and why I do things. I found myself thinking about the story I tell myself about myself.

To anyone who will hear it, I proclaim to hate the beach and the water. I declare that I am not a fan of sand in my toes and I get particularly grumpy if it ends up in my swimsuit so, no I’m not going to sit in the sand without a towel – ever. I am content to hang out on the grass and watch the kids play in the sand, and especially grateful when another mom is with me to do the same. But today it was me and the two boys and because they wanted to play in the water and swim a bit, there was no sitting on the sidelines for me.

I went in the water and even got mildly sandy. Today I played. I carried buckets of water to help create a volcano. I carried many, many mop pails full of lake water. And while I was carrying those buckets of water, the boys were having such fun and squealing with delight as the water found its own way back to the lake. Then I realised something – I was having fun. I was not simply obliging the boys. I was no longer doing it to be helpful or to be supportive of their creativity, I was simply having fun being a part of the game. I enjoyed carrying those buckets of water. I enjoyed the sand and the water. I didn’t want to be anywhere else doing something different. I was happy where I was, playing with the boys and I even didn’t want it to end.

But wait, I don’t like the sand and water, or do I? Crap. I have just discovered my own bullshit. Maybe the beach is not so bad after all?

More thinking… How many things do I actually enjoy, but tell myself I do not? And why? Because of what other people will think? Because I don’t want to be uncomfortable? Because I might like it?

Ironically, the book I was reading at the beach when I was not playing with the boys, was Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert. This added fuel to the fire of my thoughts and brings me back to my unpublished blog posts. I haven’t published the posts because I wasn’t happy with them. I felt they were incomplete and not as amazing as my last post. Today, I read about how Elizabeth’s mother would say, “Done is better than good.” She has a point. Done will always be better than something that is left undone. Ugh. Me getting in my own way again.

Since I was a little girl I have always wanted to be a writer. Correction. I have always been a writer, I just won’t admit it to myself for some damn reason. And I do actually write, but not many people get to read it. I enjoy it. I am good at it. And I hide it. WTF?

I don’t know that I’ll figure out the why of it all today. But I now know that I am standing in my own way in different parts of my life. I procrastinate working on my blog, I create reasons not to play, I find reasons not to share my writing.

And now that I am aware, I can do something about it. To quote Alan Frew, “You have to DO to get DONE.” And so I shall.

Today was a good day. I played. I laughed. I ate ice cream. I learned a lot – about me.  But before I go, the little girl in me just remembered her favourite camp song, that I would sing with all my heart:

This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine.
This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine.
This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine.
Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.

 

So I will get out of my own way and let my little light shine.

Thank you for taking the time to read my post. It warms my heart to share my words with you.

Much love,

R

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.