What you have to say is what the world needs to hear - right now. Things will never get better if the ugly truth stays in the shadows. No amount of spiritual bypassing will ever make our shameful past go away. You can't "love and light" this shit out of existence nor can you LOA it out of the DNA of our sister of color.
My favorite childhood memory is playing around-the-neighborhood hide-and-seek. Most of the kids - maybe 10 of us - would break into teams and hide in fields, up in trees. underneath bushes. And, as you can guess, I was a master hider. Inside the safety of tall pine trees were my favorite places to spend time - day or night.
But now is the time to stop hiding, and go seek what makes me whole, what challenges my beliefs, what demands my attention so that I may change the world, and myself.
Everyone has a story to tell. Everyone deserves to be heard. It's what I live my life by. What I've built my business on. How I approach each person and every situation.
What is the story that needs to be shared at this time? What story will have the most impact? What story will spark the most conversation or create the most change?
What if what I need to say needs to be heard, right now?
What if what I need to teach needs to be learned, right now?
What if what I need to disrupt needs to be shifted , right now?
Can I wait for this stranger within to get tired of hiding? Can I wait for her to find her courage, to overcome her fear?
I am tiptoeing into this space - into a place I wouldn’t wish upon my enemy. To face off against the worst in others - the judgement, hatred, bigotry, shame, guilt, disgust they have for fat people - and stand for who I know I am - to hopefully spark a conversation around being seen for who we (all of us) are not what we (all of us) look like.
I am not ready for it.
It is not my job to make your life comfortable.
It is so much easier to stay numb. To just get by - day to day - and only opening yourself up to what is required to survive.
To limit your emotional response to only a small fraction of what is available because we've been taught that feeling too much is a bad thing.
But what if we could feel 2% happier? 2% more compassion? 2% more empathy? 2% more hope?
The worst advise I think anyone can receive when sharing their demons with the world is this,
"You can do anything you set your mind to."
Respectfully, I call BULL-SHIT.
First, it's not that simple.
Second, you are making them out to be a victim.
Third, if it were true, no one would ever give up on a dream.
Fourth, it offers no level of compassion or support.
Fifth, it takes more than mindset to accomplish anything.
Let's break these down, one-by-one.
He told me I talked too much and that I needed to only say things once but think about what I was saying so that people actually listened the first time I said it. He said I repeated by thoughts because I wasn't confident in what I was saying and that if I would be more thoughtful and concise with my words, people would take me more seriously.
Over the years, I've thought about that comment several times, passing it off as true, sometimes, absolutely ridiculous other times.
But it wasn't until today that I realized the damage it had done.
If you don’t know what you stand for...
If you aren’t clear on your values...
If you aren’t aligned with your goals...
If you can’t claim your desires...
Then how do you know where you are going and, most importantly, how will you know when you get there?
Will you even recognize yourself when you “arrive”?
You can’t expect to spend your whole life speaking from a place of fear, guilt, shame, belonging, and pride to then immediately be able to consistently and comfortably speak your truth.
It is a muscle that must be exercised.
Also because vulnerability hangover is real.
And sometimes people just don’t want to hear it.
Your truth isn’t always comfortable - for you or others.
But it must be spoken. It must be released into the world.
I look for inspiration everywhere. Somedays, I need more of a push than other days, so I take what I can get where I can get it.
There's nothing that makes me spin into despair faster than being unmotivated and uninspired (which is when the nonstop chatter of "I don't know what to do" I don't know what I want" "I am so stuck and don't have any idea what I should focus on" "I should just get a real job"... is loud and obnoxious.)
I’ve never been a rebel. Well, except that one year in college when I worked at the school radio station and spent weekends dressed like a confused goth/grunge rocker - Doc Martens, black eyeliner, big hair, bleached jeans, the works.
But mostly, I’ve spent my life not rocking the boat. Not drawing attention to myself. Staying in the background.