I put a lot of stock in Self Awareness.
It seems to me, to be one of the best personality traits any person could hope to possess. Short of becoming an enlightened being. In fact, I tend to think that Self Awareness’ power to do good can actually cancel out – or mitigate the effects of some not-so-great personality traits. For example, if a hypothetical person were to possess certain characteristics such as…oh, say, stubbornness, a quick temper, a need to always be right, control issues, a touch of OCD, pathological lateness, shallowness, and just a touch of paranoia – and yet she was also Self Aware, then she (or he, you know, hypothetically) wouldn’t be totally annoying. Because she would totally Get. It.
Everyone follow? Hypothetical girl doesn’t expect the entire world to treat her like she’s normal. She knows she’s weird. She’s embracing her weirdness.
Self Awareness rocks.
And so, I spend a lot of time trying to cultivate and fine tune my self awareness. I guess you could say I love to learn more about me. So yesterday, I was just DE-lighted to stumble across a little exercise that I think furthers my quest. It was in Real Simple magazine. Which I simultaneously love and loathe. I love it, because it teaches you how to live your life Just So. And I loathe it, because who the hell needs that kind of pressure?
But this was good. It was an article that talked about how times in your life where you feel totally vulnerable and without material/financial security are actually jumping off points for new and grand adventures and opportunities. What have you got to lose? The exercise asked you to draw three concentric circles. In the smallest circle you put your experiences. In the next circle you put things you’ve always wanted to try. And in the largest circle you make notes about your potential.
Isn’t that a great visual? All that potential just sitting there waiting for you to move it into your little circle.
I’d probably be really skeptical of that whole notion if I were reading the article in say, 2002, when I found myself feeling exceptionally vulnerable and financially insecure. But now, with a little hindsight, I can honestly attest to its truth. My husband getting laid off, and us being totally dirt poor for about 2 years was the best thing ever to happen to us. He finally had no excuses – he had to follow his bliss and start his own company. And we learned a lot of valuable lessons about money when we didn’t have any of it. It made us feel like we could weather anything.
So now here I am. I’m the one who took the leap, quit a totally stable job with a nice paycheck and cushy benefits to become part of our family business. Thanks to my brilliant and sexy husband, I’ve got a lot bigger of a safety net than he did. He pays me even though I’m sitting at my desk writing this blog entry instead of billing hours. But still…it’s kinda scary. And I’m impatient. I want to have some clients and some projects RIGHT NOW.
I’ve felt pretty timid about putting myself out there and going after new business. But that article reminded me that I really have nothing to lose. So today, I’m going do something fabulous. I have no idea what that will be. But it will be great. Stay tuned.