The face in the mirror

The more challenges that come my way the more I realize that we will be presented with personal obstacles time and time again, and right when we start to think we have out-smarted ourselves, we go and do it again. In my line of work, so many of my personal challenges melt into my professional world because I invest a large amount of my energy and passion into my daily work. On one hand, I am deeply grateful for that inner fire to show up everyday at work with the same motivation. On the other hand, I am noticing how often I am faced with the lesson of managing high expectations on myself both at and away from work.

My mother provides a great safety cushion for me to fall on when I need to reflect my actions, accomplishments and disappointments. Lately, her wisdom has been crucial to reshaping the belief systems I manifest each day. Especially in the last couple months, I am working on coming to terms with the truth that the same things I am telling her are frustrating me in my day are still issues she faces when she walks into work each day. It’s the beautiful bliss of social work and direct service, but also the mindfulness practice required for Type A, over-achiever, sometimes spastic women (yes, 99% me!) Whether that’s positive or destructive…well, that can show up both in the same day!

Lately at work, I have been both taking on responsibility but also making some mistakes within new systems that I helped establish. The new initiative has deeply empowered me to dive further into the programs where I work. The mistakes are humbling me to acknowledge my humanness of imperfection and ability to expand my awareness in the menial tasks of data. It’s quite amazing how a couple of numbers can add up to much more than principally conceived.

In the moment, “humble” is not exactly the word I would use to describe my behavior and self-love. Disappointed and overall pissed would be more like it! This intense nature is when the mirror of who I am shows up and reflects where I need to invite my inner child to play and offer up some gentleness to my soul. Facing this conscious reflection also is a harsh reality. To gaze into the mirror and accept my ego’s demonic rage spitting fire back at me is not all sunflowers and sunshine. For so many years, I have been programmed to take beating myself up as a positive remedy to making mistakes. Because clearly, the threat should help me make better decisions the next time. YA, RIGHT!!

So, at the end of the day, I get done what I can — I put my best foot forward and I step into tomorrow willing to look in the mirror, with the humble gentleness to recognize I am only as beautiful as what is on the other side of the mirror. My goal is to put out the fire on the other side before it engulfs me and I get burned out on the things I love most. So whether I am 23 or 53, the obstacles will put me on the battlefield to question whether I can coexist with the bliss and the challenges? I choose blissful challenges!



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