authenticity is easy
when you're showing your light side.
your good side, your up side,
your i've-got-it-together side.
but it's not so easy to be the real deal
when your shadow side is showing.
when you're down, depressed, stressed.
when you're struggling with something, or several things,
you feel like you should be handling handily.
when you're making mistakes you've made many times,
errors that with repetition turn your embarrassment
when your typical self is bright & happy & helpful,
& you desperately don't want to be a debbie downer.
because you don't want people to know you're
so, in the spirit of true authenticity, i'll own it here & now:
i am. struggling. making mistakes. falling. down.
i have shadows. i am imperfect. i am human.
i err. i do it again. i am trying. & it is ok.
[& if i repeat that to myself enough times, maybe it really will be.]
so, according to amazing shame expert brené brown,
joy + gratitude are inextricably connected, & not the way we might think.
it's not joyful happenings that lead to gratitude;
it's a gratitude practice that leads to joy.
quoth dr. brown: "without exception, every person i interviewed
who described living a joyful life or who described themselves as joyful
actively practiced gratitude & attributed
their joyfulness to their gratitude practice."
so rather than listing what's wrong with my life at the moment
[a horrific habit i use to try to justify my negative mood,
but which actually serves only to worsen it],
i'm trying to practice gratitude.
[again, easy to do when things are going swell,
not so much when things are going not-as-well.]
so i've stuck a postit onto my bedside dresser & it says 'thank you.',
to remind me to say "thank you for this day & all it holds"
as soon as i open up my eyes in the morning.
& now, here's my list of gratitudes for today:
:: my talents as a writer.
:: my partnership with karen barry.
:: my new auxiliary biz as a petsitter [creature comforts pet care - austin].
:: my stable of sweet, solid clients.
:: my sweet, patient, understanding husband.
:: my dear, supportive, listening friends.
:: our terrific kids, good dogs, beautiful home & happymobile.
:: the rain.
:: the internet.
:: jazzercise, zumba & hula.
:: oprah, water & sleep.
joy will come.
hope it's soon.
image source: me!