This space - and the activity of blogging - has become such an area of contention for me lately. Feelings of longing swirled with obligation and disappointment enter my heart every time I remember my blog and how long it's been since the last time I've written. It's hard to filter the voices to find which is the right one. The one telling me to be more disciplined and return to a passion of mine, the one telling me to give myself grace and let it go, the one from others saying I should start my blog back up again. And then there's the reality of time and what I'm physically even able to accomplish every day. I have a full-time job, relationships to maintain, weekend plans and getaways. It's hard to believe there was a time when I knew how to balance all that plus a blog, because lately it has seemed impossible.
But after a few months away, I started to learn that "giving myself a break" actually came at a cost. It was a slow seep into a stagnant every day rut that took me weeks to pinpoint. I felt it most at work. I have felt uninspired and lethargic and mostly kinda "meh." It's not a feeling of sadness or depression, just a a feeling one might have when you're running (or maybe walking in my case) on a treadmill and recognizing you're not actually going anywhere. You're stuck.
After dropping several outside commitments and hobbies of mine in the name of rest, I realized that ironically the things I gave up so I could have a life were the very things that were providing me with life to begin with. They were things that benefitted other people besides myself. Projects that ignited my creativity and made me excited. Challenges I conquered and felt a sense of accomplishment after the fact. It's no wonder I'm experiencing feelings of unfulfillment in other areas of my life when I stopped pursuing the things that were most true to the core of who I am.
In all this I had an important revelation that I had lost sight of somewhere along the way. I can best summarize it in a quote that you no doubt have pinned on your Pinterest quote board somewhere, but it's truth is profound and crucial for the way we conduct our lives: "Don't ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive." - Howard Thurman. As much as I love certain aspects of my job and what I do there, I was not made to do PR. That isn't what makes me feel alive (don't worry co-workers who might be reading this, I'm not quitting). What I do in those 8-10 hours I'm at work every day is probably not going to change the world. But the things that light me up inside and make me feel invigorated? The things I was born to do? Pursuing those things might actually change the world. And I don't want to lose site of that because I have tunnel vision towards my next paycheck. I owe it to myself and to the world to pursue the unique person I was created to be.
So I'll start small. With this new post that took me way too long to write. With the discipline to actually get up early and run this morning. And with a commitment to not forget about the things I was born to do, but instead to push forward with a tenacious heart that recognizes the weight and beauty of the perfectly individual calling that was placed on my life. It's time for me to get un-stuck.
(And because it's been awhile, here are a few pretty snapshots from my life these past months):
From my heart,