Thursday, February 21, 2008

The answer is always to be myself

I've got a lot on my mind this week, what with my trip out West coming up next week. It always seems like there's a lot to get done before you can even think about leaving town! Not to mention doing double the freelance work so you can make up for the lost income. And arranging for the health and feeding of the other life forms that depend on you, like canines and teens.

But all that seems to pale in comparison with the mental preparation needed. I'm taking the trip to investigate if I want to move back to SoCal. So, it's really a working trip. I'll be reconnecting with friends and also trying to make some professional connections.

And, I have to admit, I've got a bit of nervous energy about this trip. What will it be like? What will I find out? Who will I meet?

In light of all this frenetic tension, today's phone session with my life coach was a true blessing. I brought to her the concern that I might be labeled by the people I meet before they know me. She then asked all the right questions to get me to sort out my core beliefs and convictions.

She helped me boil things down to two choices:

  1. I can try to win people over by arguing my way through those attributes with which I might be labeled, or
  2. I can be myself.

When I worry about how I might be labeled (I told my coach), it's like my identity is a creature in my chest trying to get out. Like it's bigger than me, pushing against the inside of my rib cageā€”some alien being that will blow out of me and make a bloody mess.

When I think about being myself, it's more like there's a star shining from within me, radiating outward and being fully recognizable to anyone who sees me. I don't have to do anything for it to be seen; it's just self-evident.

It's the difference between having to prove myself, and having to be myself.

So my assignment from my coach before I leave is to run scenarios in my imagination of being placed in a situation where I'm being labeled and rather than trying to prove myself, I respond instead with who I am.

Sounds a lot easier, doesn't it?

Your ideas and inspiration are welcome! Please comment below or Contact Laura.
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At 2/21/2008 05:43:00 PM, Blogger Kate said...

Hey...I love you...I have only ever seen the you that is gloriously funny, beautiful, smart and poised...and I can't even imagine anyone else seeing anything less...

love you...K

At 2/22/2008 03:04:00 PM, Blogger Heidi said...

Travel is a wonderful opportunity to observe everything around you and interact with places/people who really have no choice but to give you the benefit of the doubt. Label or no label. I've met the most wonderful folks while traveling and California has no shortage of them =) Once you step foot outside your door, the adventure is out of your hands and your only requirement is to glean everything possible from your experiences.

At 2/23/2008 09:35:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why in the world would it occur to you to think about people labeling you? I mean--I never do (think about it). Why should you? You must be some silly-blogging-weirdo-chick!

At 2/23/2008 10:00:00 AM, Blogger Laura Matthews said...

LOL, thanks for that!

still chuckling,

At 2/23/2008 12:19:00 PM, Blogger Kate said...

I think I'll go to Oklahoma soon...where the corn grows as high as an elephant's eye and they never label you...except as cyberspace superheroes!
love k (aka...lyric-obsessed praying artist chick)


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