I’m having a pretty busy summer, so things will probably be pretty quiet around here for awhile.
But, I wanted to share something that’s been on my mind for awhile and keeps coming up to the top of my mind.
I feel like this stage of my adulthood is about picking up the pieces of myself that I have left behind along the way. And I wonder if other people feel that way too.
I know that everyone, at some point, is likely to have an experience where life totally blows up on them. It sucks. If you’re going through that, I’m sorry. It will be hard for you to pick up the pieces of yourself, but don’t give up. You can do it!
What I’m thinking about today is the little things we give up. Maybe without realizing it.
I’ve listened to some great talks on podcasts, etc. about knowing when to quit something. The reasoning (if I can sum up) is that as we focus on things in our career, life, or pursue deeper interests (major in college, life partner, job, etc.) you necessarily must “not choose” other things, and if we’re always trying to choose everything, we won’t do anything.
When I type it like that, it seems convoluted, but I think you know what I mean.
For example, if I’d never quit doing dance when I was five, I would have never played soccer. If I’d kept trying to play all the positions, I never would’ve gotten pretty okay at playing goalie. If I’d never done that, I wouldn’t have learned about falling. If I’d never quit soccer, I might not have started doing Taekwondo. And if I hadn’t let go of some of my other career goals (either for now or forever), I would never have been able to be a business owner. Sometimes we give things up, and it’s hard, but often it leads us to the next thing.
But now that I’ve gotten to live a little bit more of my life, I’m noticing that sometimes life moves in circles. Despite Robert Frost’s beautifully made assertion in ‘The Road not Taken” sometimes the path does come back around.
I have found lately that I really enjoy kicking a soccer ball around in the yard with my daughters. I have started cultivating a playlist of music I used to really enjoy listening to, and adding songs I like now. But I’m not quite so judgmental of myself about what I think I “should” be listening to. I’ve re-read some books from my past, and like old friends they come back to me with new lessons and remembered delights from when we first met.
As I’ve worked on being a bit more of a whole person, I find myself looking to pick up the pieces of myself that I left behind. I find myself wanting more music. More fun. More trips to the zoo to look at the giraffes.
So, if I was going to turn this into a suggestion (or a little life hack as I’m fond of calling them), I would encourage you to think about the pieces of yourself you’ve left behind – whether because you thought you were too old, too sophisticated, or too busy for something – and try picking it up again.
Let me know if you try, and what it is that you’ve picked up again.