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“I’ve never seen any life transformation that didn’t begin with the person in question finally getting tired of their own bullsh*t.” ~ Elizabeth Gilbert
Do yourself a favor: get tired of your own bullsh*t.
Take a hard look at yourself, own your sh*t, and be exactly who you are.
Self-reflection. Accountability. Authenticity.
Transformation by definition is thorough and dramatic change. Change is difficult, scary, and often the thing we expect of others but refuse to do. I am not suggesting you change. I am challenging you to grow.
Growth is messy, sometimes painful, but always redefining. I think we all need that redefining moment in adulthood when we take a hard look at ourselves and decide it is time for growth.
For me, it was admittedly recent. I had a candid what the f*ck are you doing conversation with myself and then said, enough. In that moment, I took full responsibility for my path, the choices I have made, and the results of those choices. The actions and words I have used to protect myself and the wall I built needed to be reexamined. I needed to stop blaming my circumstances on the actions of others and start taking accountability that my choices were molding my life—no one else was. It is so easy to place blame on others. Other people, other circumstances, our environment, our society. Anything or anyone but ourselves.
Because when you point the finger in the mirror, there is no escape.
Do not escape yourself; embrace yourself. Embrace your scars, your idiosyncrasies, your broken heart, your cautious mind. All of you. Then determine what is holding you back or what it is that needs attention or growth and then do the work. Make the choice to roll up your sleeves and get dirty in the gritty, raw, really hard but necessary work.
Self-reflection is like watching that one cringe-worthy scene in a great movie.
You want to look away or pull the covers over your face but once you get through it, you realize the potential for a masterpiece. For the record, you can be a Picasso and the messy scribble of a three-year-old all at once. A masterpiece and a mess.
I used to be afraid of the mess. Afraid to color outside the lines. Afraid not to have a clearly defined purpose in all I did. I have found my authenticity outside the lines, in the mess, and not in line with any defined expectation. However, that was a choice. It did not happen haphazardly or by accident. I chose.
Our lives are made up of a series of our choices. Choices so big that they are immediately life-altering or so simple you barely notice that you are making them. And there is a whole lot of them in between. When I was a teenager, I remember being told often to “make good choices.” Then, it seemed simple. There will be many moments in life that the choices before you are clearly defined and easy to make but more often you will come to a fork in your path and the “right” choice will not be so clear.
There will likely come a time in our lives when we have a choice to redefine ourselves, to question our path, to examine or reexamine our own mind and our own heart.
Choose growth. Choose it over your ego or your fear. Even though the pains of growth will sometimes feel like you are drowning or standing in quicksand. Even though it will force you to look in the mirror and see things that may break you. Even though you may lose people or even parts of yourself or life as you knew it.
A butterfly begins its journey as a caterpillar that decides one day to hang upside down, alone, wrapped in a cocoon, and in this protective casing radically transforms itself.
Turn yourself upside down, transform into exactly who you are, and your growth will redefine you. Nevertheless, it is a choice that only you can make.