It was my first night of our family vacation. Amazing dinner with my brothers, sister, niece and nephew, grilling out on the beach. Fresh air, waves in the distance, stars above, Christmas music playing, and all of us reaching around the table for the salsa and the guac, as only good friends or families can. LOVED that dinner, so much.
I had a long chat with my brother and his wife afterwards about a leadership/emotional intelligence course I had just finished, debriefing all my insights and new ways of being that I am committed to. What also came up was this idea that my sister shared--that maybe it’s time to “put my book (that I’m writing) down...” and demonstrate what I’m writing about first...aka pursue my love of dance first, then publish my book from the standpoint of having lived what I’ve been studying for so many years.
I went to bed that night, ruminating on all we’d discussed. But out of it all stuck that idea that perhaps I should put my book on hold. This is the book that I’ve been writing since I quit my corporate job back in 2012, sold everything, and started my 17,700-mile solo road trip around the country for six months: the same book that I had planned on helping finance my passion-projects and pursuits for 2014, and also serve as a springboard for other opportunities.
And now, here I was being asked to put that all aside. To do what? Dance. Yeahhhhhh, ok. Riiiiight.
Here’s an excerpt from my journal that night, after tossing and turning about this proposed new path (It’s 1/2 spill-my-guts onto the page, and 1/2 self-coaching, talking myself through limiting beliefs and what I can choose to believe):
I’m so scared to actually consider this. It’s not that I don’t think I’m talented or at least coachable--I know I am to some extent, but I still have a lot of work to do and a lot to learn, too. But it scares me to put away the metrics with which I measure myself and the world around me (job, status, clients, etc.)...and go after what my soul truly aches for...and not know the outcome.
I honestly have no idea how I’m going to make this work right now. Money, training, lessons, comps, politics, travel... But I keep going back to this idea to just pursue it first. Put that intention out there, live it honestly, and the work/money/creativity will coalesce to make it happen. And I’ll get to say Yes to opportunities along the way.
I also wonder...Is this just a selfish pursuit? Well...is it selfish to come into my fullest self, or to continue living as only 1/2 of me in a dead end job?
I have a feeling I could contribute a lot to the dance with my unique perspective and style, just as I see everyone else’s expression and flavor come alive in the dance. Why is my expression any less valued than anyone else’s? (maybe because it’s not, mol...) This really is my time to go after it...if not now, I know I will wish I had later on. I know it. I’m so scared to actually go after it. But I know I need to, for my soul’s sake.
What about my publishing my book (which is all about not settling for a job that’s just “meh”)?
This is what living it first will look like. This is living my dance. How will I pay for comps, training, routines, costumes, travel...??? I don’t know, but I can already feel my heart opening up in this idea (cue *tears*), like when I hadn’t danced for a while when I was living in Santa Barbara, CA. And I couldn’t figure out for the life of me why I was so unhappy underneath it all... I was missing dance. My dance. and Me, my full Self.
I can foresee my writing opening up and coming from such a deeper place when it starts from this place. It’s ALL heart here. It’s me here.
What I do know for sure, is that I come alive on the dance floor. It’s where I’m my most happy. Where I’m my soul’s best and fullest self. Time disappears, food doesn’t matter, sleep doesn’t matter. On the floor, I can be all shades of me: playful, sexy, sorrowful, passionate, cute, sharp, intense... I’m proud of the woman out there, and would love anyone and everyone to see her, meet her, and get to know who she is, as she is out there. As long as I’m dancing, I’m happy. I’ve always joked that someone could ask me for a dance, and even if I were in a deep sleep, I’d still wake up immediately to accept.
It’s challenging, it’s rewarding, I’ve already loved it for five solid years already, and everyone but me (apparently) can see the light in my eyes when I talk about it. It seriously feels like I’m in love. Dance has helped me come into my own and deepen who I am. I’ve made incredible friends because of this community, and now feel like I have a piece of “home” wherever I travel and find a dance. And in every lesson I take, I learn more not just about dance, but it serves as an incredible metaphor for so many life lessons too.
My heart is pounding so hard right now. short breaths. ugh...I think I might turn my life inside out this year...and it scares me to no end. But I suppose I’ll figure it out somehow...