Raise your hand if you can honestly answer yes to this question: Are you, now or at any point in your last year, holding yourself back from being the person you’ve always wanted to be? Are you handcuffing yourself to a version that doesn’t feel complete, doesn’t feel fully awakened, for no other reason than fear or some misguided idea that it’s the way things have to be? I’m not sure how many of you have your hands up right now, or if you just pretend raised your hands because you think I cannot see you, but I can, and I’m looking right at you. My hand is up too. Why do we hold ourselves back from being ourselves? Why do we feel pressure to be something different? I know society places unrealistic expectations on the people we’re to be, but more than this, more tangible on a daily basis, are the expectations we lump onto ourselves. We stare into mirrors and see only flaws, we see the success of others and point fingers back at our own lives looking for shortcomings. We hold ourselves to the fire, forgetting that so often, they are fires we didn’t light at all. We go searching, binoculars in hand, for this person we swear exists beyond the boundaries we see in ourselves, and in doing so, we miss so damn much.
I think, if we’ve learned anything this insane year, it’s that we need to be gentle with who we are, and we need to be a whole lot more forgiving. We need to not only accept the people we truly are, but celebrate them, and hell, show them off a bit. Be proud of who you are, all you’ve endured, and consider this the sign you’ve been waiting for to stand up and admit you’re pretty great.
Stop and understand
that it's you that holds you back
from being yourself.
Haiku on Life by Tyler Knott Gregson
Song of the Day
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Yes, we all do this! The universe has a much bigger life available to us if we trust and surrender, but then we have to ask ourselves, if we're not in control, who's life are we really living? Tricky. This year, for obvious reasons, I've been more immobile than at any point in my life. I was born in South Africa and I lived in four different countries before I was nine-years-old. As an adult, I've lived in six different states and I continue to travel all over the world regularly. Being this grounded has forced my wanderlust into serious review; I quite literally don't feel like myself anymore because the inner restless urge to be filled with awe and wonder - to see a new place and experience culture shock - is off limits. Inside, there feels like a primal scream building to a breaking point that will need to be acknowledged somehow. Maybe being gentle is acknowledging that there is no way to feel authenticity during this extraordinary year.
I've done an incredible amount of personal growth through the perseverance needed to overcome my knee injury. While I've faced a lot of personal demons and pushed through more than I ever imagined possible, I've found more mental roadblocks I still need to face and knock down. I've gotten better at recognizing them in all parts of my life, and I've gotten better at sitting with my thoughts and working through things rather than stuffing them in a mental closet, only to haunt me at some point down the road. Still, I have work yet to do, and I need to get out of my own way for that to happen. We are all a work in progress, and if nothing else, I hope this year has given us the time to accept that.