I don’t know about you, but each day I hear or see something that all of a sudden makes “sense” out of the tapestry of my life experiences. Some of these aha moments are life-altering; others are just course corrections.
I camped out at a crossroad for a little over a year (you might recognize this place) waiting for an expert, a valid spokesperson of God, someone IMPORTANT, to tell me it is OK to go, go, go!
Now, I am not talking about no action and sitting on your bed for a year without doing anything…life each day is filled with action – eating, time with friends, work, exercise, etc. – all busy-ness, activity to fill time. This kind of activity actually takes us further from the desires of our hearts.
As I made myself comfortable, waiting for someone to tell me to go, I wondered why no one was! I desperately wanted someone to validate my design, my core nature, who I was created to be. If only I could get someone to agree, I could go forward; till then, I was going to wait so I did not make a mistake.
Coaches, mentors, teachers:
I have some incredible coaches, mentors, teachers and encouragers in my life! During the last year they cheered for me, encouraged me, had faith in me, but I sensed a disappointment in them toward the end of the year. In my spirit, I sensed they were asking, “Why isn’t she moving forward?” “When was she going to DO something, ANYTHING!” particularly since I had overcome in many other areas of my life.
As a friend, I can encourage based on what I can see in the other person, the truth of who they are, the small portion revealed to me – I cannot be their all in all, because I cannot know a person that way, from the outside in.
What I was looking for was someone to reflect not the part where the truth of our lives overlapped, interacted, but that the whole package was “OK”. I wanted their seal of approval so I could at long last kick out the thoughts in my head that “I was a mistake.” “Everyone else is OK, but not me.”
I was looking for the validation of my whole self, not the part they could see or interact with. I did not get it, so I did not move. Sound familiar?
Roots and focus:
The realization that although I had left behind the childish seeking of others' approval and validation, I continued to shape my life, my actions, the places I would go, the trainings I would go to, the people I would try to hang out with by this underlying belief I needed someone outside of me to say I was OK.
Something shifted in me – it actually crept up slowly over time, like a tide slowly rising in a river until it gently overflows the bank. I realized that all I had to do was to celebrate who and what I am. Have you ever written down who you are?
I started by writing down who I was not – the same things I was seeking validation from others!
I will write them out for you…maybe yours is similar. I am not
- an expert, so have nothing to offer,
- rich, so cannot influence others,
- famous, so have no impact on others lives,
- smart, so no one will think I have anything of worth to say
- young, so young people would not want to listen
Well, you can see from my list what I valued! You can also see my excuses, the lies I believed so I did not have to take any meaningful action. So what changed?
A shift in focus – from seeking others approval or validation to celebrating who I am – all based on “I am unique”; I started to celebrate who I was and realized that I could not be a copy of those whose approval I wanted, and that my value is in serving others.
I encourage you to take an inventory of what makes you – well, YOU!
I believe in you!