Grown-Ups in Mirror May Be the Total Opposite of How They Appear
Created / Updated 09 Jun, 17:48
Have you noticed lately that the person you’ve been worshiping isn’t as “perfect” or “together” as they seem?Take that friend you envy for her freelance writing career, for example. You see her & think “Someone can make a living as a writer? Awesome!” You might have even been thinking of her when you set-up your blog & started posting, or submitted yourself to write for an online paper. But one fateful day, you discover that she has a trust fund in the bank & her writing gigs don’t sustain her. (Record comes to a screeching halt).
Or what about that role model of yours who was a youth director, leading you to bask in the glow of his admirable values? When he chucked it all to go to law school because he wanted to follow the money, it made you second guess living by your own values, too. (Mirror shatters into a million pieces).
I know how it can be. It seems like someone has it all figured out, & you put them on a pedestal. They made it work, so you can too! They define the creative adult you want to be! Until they don’t (Air gets let out of tires). And you’re back at Square One, thinking you have to give up the dream of your Creative Career & become a doctor, a lawyer, or (gasp!) an accountant. Something “safe”. Something “traditional.” Something “secure.”
Well, let’s think again.
How much do appearances play in having you see someone as a grown-up you want to be like? Most of the time, it’s the outward happiness and/or pride that you’re looking at, leading you to believe that that person is both happy & proud of the life they’re living. What can youtalk about that makes you feel happy or proud? Make a topic list of all the things that light you up, whether it’s your dog or the new blog you launched or the volunteer work you’re doing. The next time someone asks what you’ve been up to, you can be the happy, proud grown-up for a change! For even more help working on your answer in regards to your career, click on over to The Dreaded Question.
Create an inspiration board that represents the grown-up life you want to lead. Start with a pile of magazines & just leaf through ‘em, tearing out anything that belongs in your grown-up land (yup, even crayons & grilled cheese sandwiches, if you want!). Don’t try to find an explanation for any of it – go only with your gut instinct. Once you have a nice pile, glue ‘em down onto posterboard or a heavy card stock in whatever formation you’d like. When you’re done, look deeper. Is there a (hidden?) message in the words & images you selected? A common theme? A brilliant idea? What can you do to bring more of your grown-up utopia to the real world, damn what other people think?
How do you think you look to the outside world? Look at everything you put out into the world – your website, your twitter feed, your resume, your wedding photos. Now look at them from a stranger’s eyes. What would that stranger have to say about you? What would they take for granted, be impressed by, and/or want to emulate? Now see if you can counteract that with something you’ve been hiding in your closet. Did that high-powered job on your resume come with crying jags in the bathroom? Was your luxurious wedding hair full of extensions? Did the BFA from NYU in acting come without a single NYU acting credit (yup – this one’s mine. I didn’t get cast in a single freakin’ show!)? Once you’ve seen the skeletons that have been sitting in the closet, it might enable you to see that nobody’s perfect, so take the Perfection weight off your shoulders & focus again on the things that you think others admire about you. Make sure that list is easy to get to & ever-expanding!
So, if the ground beneath you continues to shake, check to make sure that your foundation is solid. Your grown-up life is right underneath your feet, after all!