The world is full of so much noise, and I often find myself wanting to run or hide. Facing reality some days is hard. I don't want to focus on where I am presently rather than where I am not. Anxiety, fear, lies and confusion set in some days within me, but also all around me. It can easily choke out the peace, joy and creativity out of me and others.
We stay up late and wake up early, scrolling and typing on lit up screens. We bust our butts working throughout the week, then crash on the weekend. Questions cross our minds such as, "Does any of this matter?" and, "Is this worth it?" We wonder why going places, doing things, meeting people and working isn't enough. Why do we always feel so rushed, frazzled, and discontent?
We all want to feel like we matter. Affirmation only fills us for a short time, though, before we go looking for something else.
"I think something bigger is always happening, but it is never how we narrate it in our own head. It never is. We will meet people we never imagined in places we never planned to go. But it starts with a choice and then follows with a step. Make a choice. Take a step. Make a choice. Take a step. It's a rhythm of life. You may not get your answer until you make the choice and take the step." ―Hannah Brencher
It's a dangerous thing for us to center all of our attention and decision around being enough for the world.
A lot has happened in the past year in my life; I have a blog now, write for Odyssey, am training to be a counselor, had an article about my friend's suicide go viral, got involved with More Love Letters, tutored a special needs girl and was a nanny for the most precious little girl I've ever met.
I've continued to write every day, all the time. I'm going to be a barista this summer and counsel. In the fall, I'll look for a new job and start back on my counseling degree. I'm not where others are, but I am just where I need to be. In the here and now I am growing, stretching, changing and healing.
I have to be careful that I'm not just trying to fill myself with something greater. Just focusing on the life you project to others will make you start to live in a very discontent and half-hearted way. It will be about affirmation and impressions, but not about connecting, accepting and soaking up life.
We're always chasing that next big thing; that job promotion or better job, college degree, next relationship status or project that makes us feel important.
Moving to a different city or state and trying to be everything to everybody won't fix the problem or heal the mess that we are. We all want different things that keep us coming, going, staying, and living. A new place alone doesn't change us; time, hard work and perspective do.
Things take time and that's perfectly OK. We will miss out on life if we keep asking where we are in every moment and keep asking if we are in the right place.
If we engage in the trap of comparison and rush, we will find ourselves not being able to be at rest with where we are at. Not being present in the current moment will make us miss many opportunities and moments because we were so focused on what we didn't have. It's OK to take life day by day, step by step, and season by season.
You and I are here and, sometimes, that's all that matters.
I'm choosing to be present even when there are a hundred things pushing me to be somewhere else. Right where I am at, just as I am and how things are, I will never experience the same way again.
We can either press into the here and now, or miss it completely.
It's not always appealing when pictures of rings, diplomas, fit bodies, new books and people chasing "the next big thing" flood your social media feed. It all starts with a choice.
Make the choice to embrace now for all it is, take small steps and fall in love with where you are. Unrush yourself and the idea that you have to stay on a timeline. It's not all just about going after the next bigger, better thing. Know that nowhere is better than where you have been planted; it's giving you an even bigger capacity to be beautiful.