A Personal Experience: Finding THE Thing You Are Meant to Be

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I have tried to be a lot of things in my life.

A basketball player. A jazz trumpet performer. A recording artist. A sculptor. A writer. A marching band conductor.

A small group curator. A hospitality fiend. A seamstress. A canvas art sprayer. An aspiring barista. An almond milk, raw food maker. A furniture refinisher.

A pastel Monet. A physician facing sales person. A pull-up-push-pressing competitor. A vulnerable coffee date connector. A vegan heart healthy food baker. A speaker.

A party planner. A photographer. A Spanish speaker. An invitation designer. A facilitator. A spinning-wheel mug maker. A video personality. A movement maker.

An intentional kid-influencer. A world traveling, culture seeker. A scrapbooker. An essential oils champion. A recovering snowboarder.

A preschool healthy-snack maker. An everyday journaler.

You get what I mean.

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Even this list of things is laughable. I mean really, make my own almond milk AND keep children alive?? Please.

Journal EVERY day and get out of the house before 9AM?? Not successful.

Conduct a marching band? {Notice that nothing else rhythmic made the list!} A marching band led to my sense of beat would soon be headed right off the field in myriad directions.

But yet, I tried.

I tried to be everything. Because I wanted to be something.

I was fueled by this idea that I could “be anything I want to be if I just try hard enough.” And, I suppose, with enough work, I could have pursued any of those routes. I was at least mildly successful in most. So, why not work a little harder (my natural speciality!) and be “whatever I want to be”!?

In reflection, the demise of each of these things (though some linger for the sake of necessity and reasons of insanity), had to do with either the sense of thrilling energy or the eventual draining bog they brought.

The reason I haven’t picked up a trumpet since high school graduation? It was killing me. (And the thrill of the band room romance had long since ended).

StrengthsFinder Trumpet

Why that baby towel business didn’t take off? I love the thrill of creating something new. Once. But the repetitive production is eye-gouging. And it lacked life-changing impact.

The rationale behind not going back into sales, where I was heavily successful? I woke up with a pit in my stomach every day that I was supposed to “hit the streets” and was only thrilled during days of administrative, creative, and existing connection activities.

But writer, facilitator, authentic life-changing movement maker…now those things fuel me. They not only feel like they have been laced with success, but they leave me with an ecstatic sense of purpose and a high-dose of energy producing endorphins that keep me coming back for more.

{Vegan heart-healthy baker, spinning-wheel mug maker, and intentional kid-influencer rank high on the list as well.}

These are things that my natural Talents lead me toward and through and in—the ability to reign chaos into efficiency, make meaningful connections between ideas and people, offer a life-changing perspective, work ridiculously hard, follow my curiosity. {Or, in StrengthsFinder language, Arranger, Connectedness, Belief, Achiever, Learner}.

These are the things that make me MORE of who I already am, who I am wired and made to be. By doing these things, I am building on what I have already got. I start from a solid foundation instead of trying to build a new foundation on a bed of sand. {Which was abundantly clear on the pastel-Monet phase of pursuits.}

Lest we not confuse energy-enhancing with “easy,” these things are not always easy.

In fact, to stay so focused and honed in on becoming MORE of who I already am, it is sometimes very hard. There are always competing priorities, and faltering failures, and completely exhausted moments that bring on every sort of question.

Is this right for me? Am I a fraud? Is there something else? Do I have to???

When I follow that skepticism, I falter. I let productivity slide down the trail of self-doubt, or I let effectiveness slip from the pursuit of the shiny little object that promises even more fulfillment.

But, in the end, that shiny object and that mastery by self-doubt, only leads me away from myself. And that, in its essence, is farther from my foundation. My energy. Who I am wired to be.

I have resolved (mostly!), that I cannot be anything I WANT to be (no matter how tempting those Pinterest party invitations are to try to recreate). But I can certainly be a whole lot more of who I am MADE to be. It’s not always easy. It takes making the same, intentional choice—over and over.

But how inspiring and fulfilling and clarifying and comforting is it to know that that “something” I was pursuing as I pursued it all, has been inside me all along.

I just had to find it. Then follow it.

* * * * *

In Episode 33 of our Isogo TV | Live and Work Video Podcast, I talked about this exact message and hashed it out using the perspectives and stories of some of the most influential thinkers of this decade.
Check it out to explore more. Subscribe to Isogo TV on YouTube or iTunes to get the weekly latest.


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