Tuesday, January 20, 2009

I Can Fly

Within all of us is a varying amount of space lint and star dust, the residue from our creation. Most are too busy to notice it, and it is stronger in some than others. It is strongest in those of us who fly and is responsible for an unconscious, subtle desire to slip into some wings and try for the elusive boundaries of our origin. K.O. Eckland, "Footprints On Clouds"
Yesterday, 120 people gathered to Dare to Soar. The speakers were powerful, the energy in the room charged. And, in the end, everyone went away feeling like they'd learned something, that they had touched and been touched by the magic, the wonder of being human and alive.

At the conference, Jesse Willis gave his first presentation ever. He was powerful, to the point and inspiring. A key I took away form Jesse's presentation was, do it now. Do not say you'll start (the diet, to quit smoking, writing...) tomorrow. Do it now. His message helped when I stepped up to the buffet table for lunch and had to decide between... sandwich bun or salad. "Do it now." I chose salad. If I'm to lose this 20 lbs that hangs around with the persistence of a 2 year old asking for 'more candy', then I must embrace, "Do it now."

Brian Willis in his opening comments suggested everyone 'Celebrate what is good' at the beginning of every meeting. Tuesday morning is the Directors' meeting at the shelter where I work. It's a great opportunity to put into practise the 'Celebrate' philosophy. Rather than talk first about all the things that need doing, weren't done or were not done well, the idea is to start with the things that need to be celebrated -- and mistakes are included in the celebration. What if... rather than starting with what went wrong, we changed the perspective to, here's an opportunity to celebrate growth. Let's look at what happened as a great chance to learn. Wouldn't that change the perspective and the energy around mistakes?

My mistakes yesterday were a great chance to learn. Before the day even began I learned two very important things. 1) I can sleep in. 2) Alarm clocks need to be switched on to work! Imagine my surprise when I awoke an hour after I had intended! C.C. reminded me as I was tearing around the house, getting ready -- You can't change the fact you slept in. Breathe.

More importantly, I got to encounter a deeply buried 'tape' that plays in my head around being on stage. When I was a young girl, I loved being on stage. I was in school plays and concerts, loved entertaining people, moving them with my talents. Unfortunately, my memories around the response of my family to my participation in those events is not supportive. My mother had a fear of any of us being 'conceited'. I don't remember them coming to the events (though they probably did). I do remember the criticism of me and the admonitions to 'not think I'm so great'.

Yesterday was the first time I gave my "Victor not Victim" presentation with someone close to me in the room. I was nervous. Self-conscious. Wary. -- I had to get over myself so that I could live on purpose and be present in the room, be present at the podium and give it my 100% -- even though C.C. and my daughter Alexis were there.

Yesterday, I identified my inner self-critic and its desire to hold me down, to keep me from daring to soar.

What a gift!

Within me is this sibilant whisper that slithers along the edges of my consciousness teasing me with its exhortations to 'not get too big for my britches', to not step up to the Mic and share my experience, strength and wisdom fearlessly. Yesterday I heard its hissing voice, its seductive cry to hold back, step away from greatness and stay in the shadows.

Yesterday, I ignored it.

Yesterday I claimed my right to be at centre stage of my own life, fearlessly sharing my truth.

It was powerful for me. At one point, as I heard the little voice of self-doubt whispering, I turned to it and said, "Oh look, My insecurities are awake. I see you." As soon as I identified what was ailing me and shone my light on their 'truth' (which is simply my ego looking for reassurance), my insecurities stepped back and gave me room to breathe. It isn't that I don't have insecurities, it is that I have the courage to step through them, to name them and to acknowledge that letting them hold me back will not get me more of what I want in my life or more of what I want to create in my world around me. Letting them keep me from flying will only ground me in sadness.

I have a dream. Yesterday, I gave my dream wings.

I can fly.

The question is: Are you listening to the inner voice of self-doubt, reminding you of childhood exhortations to limit your joy? Are you willing to step fearlessly onto centre stage of your life and claim your greatness, your wonder, your joy by being your most amazing self?

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