Behind the Facade
Published in

Behind the Facade

What am I doing here?

A rant, a promise, and what I’m focusing on in 2022.

Photo by Михаил Секацкий on Unsplash

To be honest, I’m struggling. For the last few years, in fact, I’ve been struggling but it’s been at an all-time high recently. I’m not really sure how to explain it other than I just feel… lost, like I’m stuck in other’s expectations of me.

Let me back up a second.

I’m a big dreamer. That probably doesn’t come as a surprise to any of you, especially if we’ve met in person before. After I gave myself permission to tap into my creative side earlier this year, I’ve started dreaming bigger and bigger. In 2021 alone, what started as one book turned into a list of nine (9!) books that I’d love to write some day. What started out as one podcast turned into an idea for two more. One hobby turned into four, and so on and so forth.

The thing is, I believe in my heart that I can do all of these things and more. But when I share my dreams with those close to me — friends, family, the Internet — I’m typically met with responses like, “that’s nice… but don’t you have a lot on your plate already?”

Frankly, I’m not sure how to feel about that response. I totally understand that my loved ones may be looking out for my mental wellbeing, but it’s a little disheartening to have people imply that your dreams are too big; too much. Maybe it’s because I’ve been hearing that sentiment my whole life in terms of my weight that it bothers me so much. To this day, other people — loved ones, even — tell me I’m too big; that I have to lose weight. They hide behind the excuse “it’s for your health,” but the thing is, I am healthy. I can swim a mile, do an inversion, and walk for 90 minutes straight, no problem. So, instead, are they insinuating that I’m taking up too much space in this world; that my value is limited because of the body that I’m in? I don’t know.

Anyway, I’ve been thinking a lot about what I want my life to look like. Not just what I write in these newsletters and say in my podcasts and write in my books, but who I am as a person. The truth is, I’m sick and tired of living my life for other people. I want to follow through on the big dreams — not to prove myself to others, but to show myself that I can do it despite the never-ending pushback and concern from others.

Every year, I pick a theme for my year. 2019 and 2020 were all about embracing simplicity. 2021 was centered around settling in, not down. And 2022, I just decided, is about looking inward and listening. I’m still figuring out how to phrase that more succinctly, but the idea is to listen to my gut instinct — whether its about a creative endeavor, a job, a relationship, you name it — and not only act on it, but follow-through on it. I’d love to see how much I can create and grow when I listen to myself instead of letting others’ guide the story of my life.

So that’s where I’m at today. Thank you, as always, for reading/listening. It honestly means more than you’ll ever know.

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