Wrote this back in 2011. I was in the garden this past week and it dawned on me how I’ve been to this place and back, and back again. Hope you get some inspiration here. Cheers!
Picture this, you’re moving through life wondering where you fit in. You’ve played many roles. You’ve tried finding happiness in what everyone says you should be happy with. But, alas, you’re still looking. Every day you’re looking and the “giving up thing” rears its head (ugly or beautiful).
This is tough and lonely work.
If we’re honest, we’d admit that the purpose/mission has at one time or another whispered to us. Trouble is we’re not a very honest culture. The art of lying to oneself is very much the norm. And so it goes, the whisper. The proverbial, “this is what makes me come alive” or “I belong in this space.” Do you listen or try to ignore? So now you know. It’s calling you and maybe you’re one of the few that listens. Your first step out into the great unknown is a dip (thank you Seth Godin). Maybe it’s skepticism, maybe it’s envy or maybe it’s flat out fear on your part. Before long you begin to wonder what you’ve done and is it too late to turn back. Turning back always has your number on speed-dial.
There is a reason Cortez burned the ships in the harbour.
Let me be clear, sometimes you should give up. I think we know when that is. The time to give up is not when you’re being refined by the crucible of exhaustion and doubt. And believe me, that’s when many do give up. I’ve always believed that no one can truly play a part in changing the world until they have felt pain and loss. By the way, that’s what everyone else has experienced. And is experiencing in some way. The audience is looking for someone who is unwavering in integrity and has a passion to solve the problems.
Here are some observations on combating the desire to give up when you shouldn’t:
- As mentioned earlier, your exhaustion and doubt may be related to the crucible.
- Being who you really are is Tough Work. Don’t buy the lie of ease and comfort.
- Going back is often the first step to your own eulogy.
- Don’t confuse the need for reinvention of your work versus turning the lights out. Your work is your work, know what it is.
- Be allegiant to your life. This brings clarity, you’ll need this when the difficult times come.