“We can choose courage or we can choose comfort, but we can’t have both.” ~ Brené Brown
A wise colleague posted this week, “… GET CLEAR on your future and vision. Otherwise your past ways, mistakes, and complacency are all too happy to invite you back.” (Thanks, Phoenix!)
Where I am today is so far from where I was last year that sometimes I feel it’s barely recognizable. Yet, I’m still at the same job, in the same house, married to the same man, and have the same three adorable boys (no bias, I swear). As a matter of fact, I’ve been at this job for over three years, which I know some would say is too long and that I’ve become complacent – that I could do more and stretch myself if I moved on. Perhaps the older generation would applaud and remind us that tenure used to mean something, although sadly the race we’ve created doesn’t leave much room for the ideals of yesterday.
Yes, to a certain extent I’m comfortable here. I know my job well, and I understand the players. While my days are ever-changing, there is an element of familiarity that I enjoy – and I would venture to say that this allows me to go beyond when I see a need that requires attention, and to build in happy surprises for those I support.
So, if everything’s the same, how do I start by saying it’s barely recognizable?
Well, for one, last year I only had two blog posts. The first one was about starting my blog (in April), and the second one was about failing at my blog (in May). Then I went silent for FOUR months. Who am I to be writing in the world? What could I possibly offer that hasn’t been said a thousand different ways?
OK, this is only the 16th blog post – but it’s a huge start to something that I never thought I’d be doing, that I never thought I could do. I’ve even got ideas for books… ideas that I actually plan on doing something about instead of just daydreaming them away and chalking it up to wishful thinking. I’ve put my work out into the universe with short stories and articles, met with mostly rejection and one (yep, just one) contest win, doses of humility and pride sidled with the notion that I just can’t please everyone (I’m not pizza).
Second, I had the amazing opportunity to visit Peru – to sit with and learn from Shamans and Andean Priests (which I wrote a bit about here). The journey was emotional and enlightening, heart-wrenching and glorious. It led me to choose growth over stagnation, and bravery over comfort – and led me further towards my last point…
Third (not last, but where I’ll stop for now), I’m realizing more and more that I’m delusional in thinking the world I’ve been raised to see is the actual world I’m in. I’m uncovering veils of deception – of my own creation – to see the deeper truths that most don’t care to search for. Some days I don’t see the veil, and I sleep through my day on auto-pilot. Some days I feel it, like it’s itchy and needs to be brushed at like some irritant. And some amazing days, I rip it away and see what I’m meant to see, in pure light.
I’m trying bring clarity each day to my vision. It’s not about my job, my home, my family, my writing, my eating patterns or exercise (or lack thereof) – it is all of these plus more, and none of them at all. It is LIFE. Not all days are great, nor will they be. You can’t have Yin without Yang. Working to be fully present in each moment, I know that the steps I take are purposeful. I will not sink back into complacency.
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4 thoughts on “Comfortable Stagnation”
Oooh. I can already tell that I’m going to be checking your blog out on a frequent basis! Thanks for finding me so that I could find you back! I have to go now, but I can’t wait until this evening to read all (how many did you say? 16 posts?) I can do that! Can’t wait! Congrats, btw, on your courage to submit your writings and your contest win! Is there a link where your readers can find it?
Later, gator! M.L. James aka Mona
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Thank you soooo much, Mona!! You are too kind 😀 There are 17 posts now, so don’t wait too long HAHAH!
The contest was small and the winners were only published in their e-newsletter to those that subscribe -but maybe I’ll put it up in a post so you can read it.
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This post, this very post reminds me that I’m not alone feeling that writing is a challenge even though it comes easy to people like us, not necessarily bloggers but (me) almost writers. Stagnation, I believe is part of the process but you’ve done something I haven’t, travel. That in itself is huge, your not stagnated, not by any means!
Thank you so much! It’s such a struggle much of the time, but when it’s finally out there…!
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