I always talk about authenticity and I live by the mantra that imperfection is the “new” perfection (because it always was). I personally never claim to be perfect nor do I know all the answers. If you read my posts you get the idea that, yes, I’m human and I have issues. I’m not positive or happy all the time. And I beat myself up regularly. I even have a badge to prove it. Which is why it makes me happy to see posts like this and that and even this.
Yes… I love real, gritty talk…
Not because it comforts me to know that there’s someone worse off than me. But because beneath all of the facades and superficiality, there is some real living and real growth going on. Because I know I’m not losing my mind. Because I’m going to snap if I see one more “How to be positive, rich, and happy in 30/60/90 days” list.
Please don’t get me wrong: I’m not bashing my fellow bloggers. Nor am I suggesting that they are liars. They definitely aren’t any better or worse than I am. Like me, they’re doing their best to make sense of everything, and hey … we all have to start somewhere, don’t we? Without them, I wouldn’t be where I am today. I wouldn’t have had the courage or the direction to even begin to change my mindset. Not the way I did. And definitely not anytime soon.
A fork in the road …
What then? What next? You don’t just wake up one day, decide to be positive, and then all the good stuff starts falling on your lap. What a lot of people don’t like to talk about is the dark feelings, the shitty moments, and the disappointments that always lurk under the radar, ready to attack when you’re most vulnerable. How to cope with it? Well … that’s another animal that I’ll tackle in another post. If you really can’t wait, may I (ironically) suggest that you read some of the boatload of lists already out there on how to do it? I mean, hey, Google is your friend.
I guess the point here is that lists, advice, success/failure stories, and life coaches give you a direction, like a compass. But a compass is a piece of metal with some weird magnetic characteristics that I don’t completely understand (because I hated physics, I really couldn’t care less, and that’s what physicists are for). Undoubtedly it’s useful, but it’s still a piece of metal nonetheless. And if you keep staring at it trying to pick it apart, you’ll never leave your spot. The dirty work and the growing pains are all on you.
The part where Thanksgiving comes into play
The impending Thanksgiving holiday has made me even more reflective lately. Which is dumb because gratitude shouldn’t just revolve around one day. But it still serves as a great reminder and I’m definitely not complaining.
Despite (or rather because of) all of the confusion and the disappointments, I am especially grateful this Thanksgiving. But I’m grateful for the bad stuff far more than I am about the good stuff. I’m grateful that I’m able to be honest with myself and all the messes I get myself into because so many people out there can’t or won’t do that. I’m grateful for all of my mistakes and all of my regrets because without them I wouldn’t have a solid reason to better myself and avoid complacency. And most of all, I’m grateful for all the suffering, the agony, and the problems in the world, no matter how hard we try to cover it up and put a Band-Aid on it. Because change, growth, compassion, love, happiness, you name it, can’t arise from constant contentedness.
So, look at this Thanksgiving as a reminder that real life is made of grit and not simply of all the blessings we do have. We must all be careful not to undermine, under-appreciate, or deny that.
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- Get rid of dead weight: Channel frustration into creative ideas into action
- Cultivating the gratitude tradition (and creating your own Gratitude Day)
- 90 day writing challenge: Mid-way mark
- Keeping it to myself (saying no to unnecessary comments)
- [Love month] Using envy to share in someone else’s joy