dealing with my humanity

CubaDayOne35.jpg

readtime: 6 minutes

song: tenerif sea by ed sheeran

i went to bed and woke thinking about the same thing — humanity. so, at this point, i am fairly certain that i am supposed to write about this, think about this, and at the very least process my own humanity. 

in our culture, we talk a lot about “authenticity” and being your “authentic self”. but, personally, i’m not hearing much talk about being human and embracing the messiness and realness of our humanity. 

when i think about authenticity — i think about being honest and true. being forthcoming, and not hiding the things that i’ve been through in order to paint myself in a better light. i think about sharing my story in a way that is compelling and moving to others. i think about truthfulness, purity, and genuinely walking through life. 

and when i reflect on how i live my life — i feel as if i do a pretty good job at being authentic. what i feel like i am not good at— showing my humanity. 

because, i am starting to feel as if there is a difference. and maybe, it’s because i have been holding myself to a different standard and everyone else has the whole authentic thing down pat, in such a way, that also lends to showing their humanity. but, either way, i am coming to the conclusion that, for me— it’s okay to be human. it’s okay for my humanity to be a real part of a situation. 

(as i am writing, i am thinking — bare with me. part of this new daily writing thing that i promised myself included taking the pressure off myself. which includes, not taking long pauses to think while writing. because when you do, that’s when writing becomes a chore. right? i think we’ve all been there. so, all that to say, if you’re reading this daily writings they really are more like sitting down with me for a glass of wine or a cup of coffee — because at some point, i’ll be bound to ramble off about something.) 

okay, so take this past weekend for instance — my sister’s wedding. 

i love my sister and i think she realizes it now— but her wedding day was a super hectic and stressful day for me with errands upon errands. i had my list and my timeline, and on paper everything was going to be done at 11 AM just in time for me to come back to my house and get my hair done and photograph my sister getting into her wedding dress. 

that. did. not. happen. 

the morning did not go as planned, i was two hours off my timeline due to reasons that were unforeseen (as always). and, while i was moving as fast as i could from place to place— you can only go so fast in a lexus SUV when you’re driving around a car full of wedding centerpieces and your sister’s wedding cake. the normal 80 MPH was looking more like 60 MPH — which, if you know me, you know that’s a major driving breakthrough. 

i dragged my cousin along with me to run all the errands, because there was no way in heaven that i’d be able to transport everything by myself — everything is always better in twos. as we are driving to drop off the cake at the reception venue, i looked at the clock and started to tear up. i was unthinkably behind schedule and was probably going to miss getting ready with my sister, photographing her getting in her white dress, and at the end of it — i was probably going to only have 30 minutes to get ready for her wedding. on top of that, i was feeling immensely guilty for being stressed on my sister’s wedding day. not that i’ve spent lots of sleepless moments in bed thinking about what my sister’s wedding day will be like (sorry, kim!), but, whatever i was imagining did not involve being stressed to the max. there was a cloud of guilt hanging over me making me feel like, “you should have this all together. you shouldn’t be having these feelings right now.” like, my own self, was shaming me for feeling stressed and for experiencing very human emotions. and within all that, i didn’t want my cousin to see my cry. i didn’t want her to see my humanity. i didn’t want anyone to know, like really know, that i didn’t have a handle on it. 

i think THIS is what i’m getting at— i think that what i have been seeing in myself (and, if i’m being honest, in some others) — is that we don’t want to allow ourselves to be human nor do we want others to experience our humanity and see us dealing with real human emotions. 

personally, it probably has to do a lot with my personality type and who i have become in recent years and what i expect out of myself — but either way, i am on a mission to extend myself a little more grace and give myself room to be human. 

i’m not a huge fan of reality TV (minus the bachelor, but ask me what their name is after their season is over and i won’t remember who you’re talking about). but, i am beginning to realize that one of the reasons our culture, as a whole, is so obsessed with reality TV is because we see their humanity. and, while often times, their humanity becomes some sort of comedic relief to us — still, we see it and we appreciate it because at the end of the day — their humanity is relatable. 

i don’t want to make a blanket statement about everyone and how they interact with the idea and concept of “authenticity” — because, frankly, i don’t know. and quite honestly, i don’t want to be the judge of that. 

but i do want to suggest that we throw something else on the table as well as the idea of “authentic”, because i think “authentic” may not cut it. i think that authenticity is beautiful, needed, and inspiring — but showing pieces of our humanity to others allows for us to be relatable. it brings us back to a place of humility. showing our humanity gives us the opportunity to be community to one another and to lift each other up — because in those very real human moments — you need someone else to come alongside of you and be the breath beneath your wings. you can’t do it on your own. you need someone else to come beside you and tell you that “it’s going to be okay”. 

people need to see our humanity. but, more than that, i think that each of us need to be okay with our own humanity. (and that includes me).

we need to give ourselves grace when we experience those very human moments. forego, the need / the desire / the expectation to be perfect. and be humble enough to let someone else be strong for us every now and then. 

_______

what are your thoughts — humanity and authenticity. do you think there is a difference? how do you navigate through the waters of authenticity and showing your humanity? 

creating for the sake of creating

read time: 3.6 minutes

song: silence

i read in a book recently that we (as humans, creatives, and thinkers) — ought to be taking time to write daily. and while, i write an overwhelming amount of content each day that gets read on various platforms – i feel as if i don’t write for the mere purpose of writing anymore. meaning, i don’t write aimlessly. i am always writing for something, for someone, or for some specific reason.

and i can’t help but feel that i am going to miss out on something. 

let me clarify — i’m not experiencing FOMO or anything like that. but it’s more of the idea of — what will happen if i never give my mind the space it needs to wander and explore? and what would happen if i do— what ideas will i come up with? what breakthroughs will i discover? what problems will i solve?

i don’t know about you — but, for me, everything i do has a reason. and the things without reason — well, it doesn't take long for me to give them purpose. 

take for example @peptothetalk. they started out as pep talks to myself, then text messages to my friends, then emails to my subscriber, and now it’s an instagram account (which i love). see what i mean? everything i do quickly purposed for something greater. 

i’m a serial creator. i create, create, create. it’s not to say that the habit of giving things reason and meaning is bad (quite the contrary, i think it’s wonderful!). but, while i’m lying here in bed suffering from yet another night of insomnia — i’m realizing, we need to do things just for the mere sake of enjoyment. we need to make just because we enjoy making. we need to create just for the satisfaction of creating. we need to write for the mere love of writing. we need to dance just because it makes us feel good. we need to cook just because we love it. 

i could be totally wrong and take this back two blogs from now — but, i feel like when we begin to create for the mere pleasure of it rather than the idea of having to “produce” — we’ll find ourselves stepping into a new realm of creativity because we’ve given ourselves the opportunity to wander deeper. 

in college, i started getting in the habit of writing. i’d write in rabbit trails. maybe i’ve mentioned this in my writings once before. but, i’d start writing about a topic, set the timer, and when the timer went off— i’d stop writing. the next day, i’d pick up exactly where i left off.

the writings were less linear and cohesive and more chaotic like a rabbit trail of thoughts and ideas. and while, if you were to put them into a book it’d be pretty darn hard to create chapters for them — i always thought that i’d be the most amazing book. mostly because it didn’t matter what page you opened to — you’d get something from any page of the book. if i’m being honest, looking back at that season of life— i felt like my mind was always exploring and that i was giving my person the ability to think about things that i normally wouldn’t have made time for. it was the season that i attribute to stepping to my creativity. 

i want that season again. i want a new season of creativity and fresh ideas. 

while in cuba, i came to the realization — i don’t give myself enough time to do this — to just wander, write, read, and create just because i enjoy it. everything is tied to a production list. one of the mantra’s i keep chanting to myself is is, “be more, do more”. i always want to be more so that i can do more. but in truth, we cannot be more if we never give our inner-selves the freedom to explore, wander, and discover.

the creative truth hit me the other day — being playful and enjoying what we do is essential if we desire to step into a new realm of creativity, if we desire to be more, and do more.

so, in the effort to be more and do more in twenty-seventeen — i’m starting back up my daily writing routines just for the mere sake of giving myself the space to create for no reason.

i’m taking the pressure off myself to be anything, making anything specific, or getting tied up in a to-do list… and giving myself the room to just write for writings sake. 

and, maybe, along the way — we’ll both learn something new. 

perhaps some writings will serve no purpose towards the greater good. perhaps some will be full of grammatical errors that my sister will be mortified over. perhaps some will be drenched with insight while others may be showing my humanity. 

whatever happens, i hope it’s good. 

_____ 

what about you? do you feel like you give yourself the time and freedom to be explore and create just for the sake of creating? if not, why?

how would your life benefit from you giving yourself the space to create out of enjoyment? 

writing time stamp:

december 21, 2016 at 12:46 AM