Thursday, January 22, 2015

Sharing Weakness

Last night I was writing back and forth with a friend about the subject of being vulnerable. I will spare you the details of our private conversation, but it left me thinking about the importance of sharing weakness.

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We live in a strange society where we all try to do and be the best, to admit otherwise is almost like admitting failure. This is something I have long struggled with. Perhaps it stems from being a first born or maybe it is just my personality, but I have always had trouble letting myself begin. What I mean when I say that is that I never let myself be a beginner. I am getting better about this as I age, but it is still a challenge to just let myself be weak or terrible at something. Which is strange because if anything comes easily I pretty much abandon it as sort of, "Well, that's easy....moving on."

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I see this in my daughters and I know that it is my job to show them that it is OK to be a beginner and not a master. There are so many missed opportunities when you won't let yourself be weak. When you see someone who is really good at something that is a great opportunity to learn, not an excuse to feel like a failure. I am constantly reminding myself of this fact and I am trying to turn my weaknesses into opportunity for growth.

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Lately I have found myself in a position for sharing weakness and embracing opportunities to grow. I have been taking the advice, given to all artists, to "Say yes and then figure it out later." So I have been given a lot of crazy opportunities this year---interior design, logo design, event planning, etc. I have said yes to all of them and then I have been working it out on my own, but I would like to move beyond that on my own part and start looking to others.

Recently Eric had a meeting with an extremely talented and successful artist who gave him,and I by extension, some excellent career advice. We may never have learned this if Eric hadn't been willing to admit that he wanted to learn more.

So now I am ready, perhaps this is a delayed New Year's Resolution, and I want to share my weakness so that I may become stronger.

1 comment:

Victoria said...

When our son Sean was young he was working on a needlepoint project...a craft new to him. At one point his threads tangled and he couldn't figure out how he could untangle the mess. We thought he was overly stressed over what seemed a simple solution; Copeland advised that he should cut the thread, make a knot and begin again.I remember that Sean's head nearly exploded at the thought of it! After much ranting and a few tears he finally admitted that he thought he should "already know" how to do it right. This idea, this lie we imagine to be true,which is perpetuated in our culture, that we should already be expert at whatever we set out do, not only undermines our motivation to take risks but leaves us paralyzed by our own self-judgment and promotes the comparison of ourselves to others. One of the greatest gifts we can give ourselves and our children is the self-confidence to do neither.

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