My new mantra has been echoing in my mind for the past few months. It’s actually not so new, but hadn’t been lurking around for a while—that is, until I stopped writing, until I stopped creating.
Why did I stop?
Because I sold out my creative dreams and creative journey, returning six months ago to a full-time corporate job. I sold out to avoid hyperventilating over lumpy consulting revenue streams. I sold out my creative peeps who are so diligently trying to create and inspire others on their own creative paths. I sold out the writers I have advised, hypocritically I might add, to ‘just write,’ despite their understandable fears, reasonable excuses, and busy lives.
Did I mention I suck?
Having said that, I’ll admit that a smarter (and much kinder) part of me senses that I may have some of this story backwards…that I might have perpetuated a cycle of not creating, believing that a creative journey looked a certain way. This sounds like a good place to retrace my steps and find out where I might have gotten off track.
A year ago, I started this blog as an act of courage. It was time to put myself out there, to take some risks—and trust the universe with the rest. I wrote what I felt inspired to write, trying to not worry whether people would like it, which was a big step for me.
I wrote some so-so things, and I wrote some very good pieces. I knew they were good because they felt good while writing them. Really, really good. I knew they were good because readers commented that what I had written was exactly what they needed to hear that day.
Along the way, I attracted a small, but loyal and very encouraging group of readers. And through the strange, connected world we live in, I became Facebook friends with an old friend from high school, who occasionally popped up on my radar having Liked one of my posts. Then one day, after reading a post, she reached out to me, asking if I was interested in a job opening where she worked.
Wait. Smarter-Kinder Me is telling me to rewind that:
A friend, whom I hadn’t talked to in years, thought of me for a job because of an article on my blog. And when that job didn’t work out, an even better job surfaced through this same friend. The whole series of events was so compelling that I happily accepted the job.
THAT’S HOW I FOUND MYSELF IN A FULL-TIME CORPORATE JOB.
Ok, now that I read that back, I can see the flaw in my original thinking—and opening paragraph. As unlikely as this story might seem, it is how everything happened. Or, better said, it’s how everything unfolded beautifully, brilliantly…serendipitously.
When I started to write this article, I imagined committing to writing more and more often—to embarking on a new phase of my own creative journey. All of which would be true, but fraught with the potential for missteps and more self-criticism.
So, I’ll simply remind myself that I started this blog as an act of courage, not as an obligation, or a test, or something that I could fail while not doing. And I named it Signs & Serendipity, which would seem to allow room for creative detours, exploration, and growth in unexpected directions—wouldn’t you think? At the very least, it allows plenty of room for a new mantra.