I love it when an idea won’t let me go…it seems that it’s demanding more of me. I have some travel time to sketch and write today on my way to my niece’s wedding in South Dakota and maybe some thoughts will take root. I’m pretty sure these images are in reaction to my “shitty roommate” post from last week. Perhaps these images represent the flip side of our lousy inner voice? I thought of this quote as I worked on these photographs.
“Courage is like—it’s a habitus, a habit, a virtue: You get it by courageous acts. It’s like you learn to swim by swimming. You learn courage by couraging.”
Below is the link to the post I”m referencing.
Lately I’ve been thinking about my “shitty roommate”. This is my personal inner voice—she makes me doubt myself all the time. She puts those snarky thoughts in my head that I’m “not good enough”, “not reaching my potential” or “if only you were more like…”.
Shame is the inner language of self-attack and self-blame AND shame is my shitty roommate’s jam.
Instead of trying to kick her out (which is exhausting and nearly impossible), I’ve decided to get more curious about her…even love her up a bit. Yes, she’s manipulative AND she also has pushed me. We’re really quite competitive. When she has my ear, she’s granted me the opportunity to self-correct behavior that doesn’t line up with my values, seek forgiveness from those I’ve wronged or offer myself a little grace.
But now, it’s time to change the rules of engagement using one short sentence.
The more I say it, the more power it has for all sorts of situations in my life.
When I question her language, my shitty roommate just puts her headphones on and leaves me alone until the next time…and there will always be a next time. She hates those three words, however, we do seem to be getting along a little better lately.
I’m so weary of the world telling me to “find my purpose”. It creates such unnecessary anxiety. Preaching PURPOSE as the only path to HAPPINESS and SATISFACTION is so common everywhere in our culture that it’s actually pretty hard to get away from. As I pondered this life’s purpose mumbo jumbo, I had a thought that eased my mind.
We all do things that make the world a better place on a “micropurpose” level all the time. These adds up to something pretty damn awesome. We make people laugh, prepare food, hold doors, show up, smile, let something go, say “I’m sorry”, pick up the check, sit with people in grief, lend a helping hand, let someone cut in line, turn the other cheek, give hugs, wash things, lend money and encouragement, pick up trash, grab coffee, send gifts, laugh at jokes, buy a drink, text “I love you” or make a phone call, the list goes on and on.
So, instead of beating ourselves up that we haven’t found our life’s purpose—let’s just take breath (or 2 or even 3) and then take a look at how truly purposeful we are every single day of our lives. These purposeful gestures can have a ripple effect making things better for so many beings…including ourselves.
P.S. I take my coffee with only a splash of cream. 🙂 How do you take yours?
I love getting hyperfocused creatively. This lets me rule out all of the other possibilities I get so distracted by all day every day. So right now—February of the year 2016 my focus is on the prairie. My ideas have a place to land and someone to explore them with. This collaborative project is in the conceptual stage, but there’s a guiding principle and that makes all the difference.
I highly recommend, if you haven’t already, to make some choices about where you want to spend your energy. I did an inventory and I realized that a few things on my list just had to go. There isn’t time for everything that interests me. I had to prioritize. It wasn’t easy, but taking a hard look at my list was pretty eye-opening.