Toe in. Toe out.
That's what I've been doing for more than a decade.
Dipping my lil' big toe into - and out of - the waters. Which waters? Pick one. Speaking. Writing. Product creation. Radio shows and podcasting. But never all at the same time.
It's time to combine them all together, and to do this thang.
Big time. One hundred percent time. Toe all-in time.
It's not that I haven't wanted to travel this entire path at once. It's more that my belief in myself and in my talents and abilities never allowed me to go after it in a bigger way. I didn't have complete buy-in to my own awesomeness.
I finally decided to accept it.
Yea, I'm awesome.
When I say I'm awesome, I'm not saying I'm perfect. Anyone who knows me could point out a multitude of flaws. So could I.
I'm sometimes a much slower learner than I need to be. It took me way too long to believe in the awesome factor. But at 51 1/2, the years looming ahead are far fewer than the years looming behind, so if I'm going to believe it, I may as well start now.
I seem to have been being prepared for this venture throughout life. For a long time, I told myself I'd do it some day.
But "some day" has fewer options than it used to have.
I'm finally recognizing that God don't make no junk. We're only junkified if we choose to believe we're not more than that. I'm done with that lie.
In case you're wondering, you can be done with that lie about yourself any ol' time, too. Because you, my friend, are also friggin' awesome. Yea, you are.
We're not supposed to say such lofty words about ourselves. We're supposed to be humble and think we're not much. That's so not the way to make the most use of the talents and coolness that each of us has received, unique to ourselves. You can be humble while still recognizing your fabulousness.
We tell kids of their magnificence all the time. Somewhere along the line, they grow up, just as we grew up, and we stop saying and hearing this message. It's as if there's an unspoken agreement that adults don't need encouragement anymore.
Are ya kidding me? With all that's on our plates, and with all the ways this world repeatedly and constantly tries to squish us into a diminished form in work and life, adults need more encouragement than we ever did in our younger years.
So yea, I'm as awesome as the next person. That would be you. And yes, you can say the same thing, too.
Getting to this point in life has been a long, curvy road. It still twists around, but I'm grabbing my megaphone and sharing my message, anyway.
The message? There are a lot of moving parts, but at its core is the reminder not to let life wear you out or get you down. That ignoring negative voices is one of the best things you can do for yourself.. That the world of possibilities is open to you. That innovation and creativity aren't for other people only. That you are more capable than the world has said you are. That re-inventing yourself and living an intentional life is do-able for anyone. Yes, anyone.
I believed the lies that said I was less-than and not good enough. I always felt everyone else was better equipped for life and business; that they'd been given the secret sauce recipe, that they had all the confidence in themselves and their ability to handle whatever life threw at them. That they knew so much more than me.
And then I realized otherwise.
I realized that the path I'd been given in life, although challenging from an early age, gave me something so much more than it seemed on the surface.
Being diagnosed at age seven with severe Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis, and navigating its ramifications throughout life, has proved a difficult walk, figuratively and literally.. But it also provided me a strength and clarity that would serve me well in all facets of life.
I simply wouldn't fully realize it until my later years.
My later years? Are they?? Seriously? How did I get here?? Sigh. A topic for another day.
I've always been a late bloomer. But this is pushing it.
I remind myself that I'm in good company with other noted late-stage entrepreneurs and other people who didn't 'become' who we came to know them as, until they were in their 50s or older. This process of 'becoming' isn't always a straight line. Also another day's blog post topic in a bigger way.
Consider Muhammad Ali's journey in life. Who he started out to be is not who we knew him to be in the end. He took risks all along the way, including still pushing himself in recent decades when it appeared physically to be excruciatingly difficult.
"He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life."
~ Muhammad Ali
Maybe he was the greatest, in ways he never anticipated or recognized.
Yet another blog post topic.
That's enough for this first blog post. We'll get to know each other well, as time and posts go on.
Enjoy the journey with me. Come back here each Sunday evening for a longer post, and most days in between for shorter bits of encouragement and insight and usable content. Or make it easier on yourself and subscribe (see sidebar) to my weeklyish newsletter so each post lands in your inbox. Boom.
Until next week, keep going. Step by step.
Toe in. Definitely in.
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