I felt nervous this week.
I’ve felt this feeling before…
There’s been a shift – a tectonic shift underneath my feet.
I’m like a new duckling learning to waddle.
No one died, and yet, something died: old beliefs, old thoughts. My plant orchid. Its petals started to fall at the precise moments I would look at it – as if the orchid wanted to show me it’s metamorphosis.
Old notions of what romance or love should be.
Black, mucky presumptions that my life was not my own.
Old conceptions that my creative work wasn’t worthy of being shown to the world.
An ancestral conviction that I’m not good enough.
In fact, I don’t remember a time in my life when I didn’t somehow think that I wasn’t worthy of love, respect, promotions or happiness. I had moments of clarity where I would step into something greater, but it was always there – underlying – that doubt.
I think that’s why no matter how much I’ve done I’ve always wanted to do more – somehow, if I kept doing no one would notice that my being wasn’t good enough. And, of course, that’s also why the doing wasn’t as satisfying as it could be.
I had lost the joy of what the doing was and the WHY I was doing any of it.
And, that’s the quickest way to kill a soul.
The last two years have slowly started to become something different. It’s crept up on me, but when I reflect on it, I notice that the joys I delighted in as a kid have entered their way back into my life – acting for the first time in eight years, writing, reading, creating places for people to create (more on that soon).
The thing about the WHY is that it can change so subtly that before you know it, the WHY you started with has no resemblance to the WHY you have now. Of course the WHY can change and perhaps should – but often times, it doesn’t change for the better – often times, it changes to accommodate other’s needs or to fit into society’s wants or to mold into the “should”.
For example, when I was little, I started acting because it was play. It stopped time. It connected me to others. It made me feel…simply, good.
Then, it became something else – I could see in my grandmother’s eyes how delighted she would be if only her granddaughter became famous. I could see how proud it made my parents when I would book a role. I saw other pretty young girls getting all the attention, and I wanted that. I thought it could make me whole – if only I became famous.
So, my WHY turned from “play”, “flow”, “connection” and “feeling good” to “fame”, “attention” and “ego-based love”.
And then it all turned mucky.
I’ve thought this entire week very hard about why I’m writing this blog, and why do I want to write everyday.
I think I’ve come up with this:
Because I have a voice, and I no longer want to keep it quiet.
I have a voice, and I want to share it with the world in the hope that ONE person will think about something.
Because I need to practice hitting “PUBLISH”.
I need to write everyday.
I’ve been doing that by myself for my entire life, and publishing this week has caused great anxiety. Each time I’ve hit publish I’ve wanted to go back and delete it, and not say anything more online ever again.
But at the end of the day, my WHY is greater than that. And, perhaps NO ONE will read this but at least I’ve gotten my voice out there. This is a muscle that I need to practice.
* What is your WHY for doing what you do? What do you do that needs a WHY? *
Tomorrow, I want to discuss something that one of my brilliant coaches taught me about WHY for goal-setting as well. I’m in the middle of a three-month, no drinking, hard working out, very disciplined food program. It’s not easy, but she taught me that my WHY will get me through. And, guess what? I have one more month to go, and I’ve lost ten pounds, inches everywhere and I’ve got a nice tight ass. So, I’m very much into this WHY thing.