New Beginnings... Again
I have a happy home, a happy life, a great yet challenging career, and much to be thankful for (despite some of the woefully dramatic complaints I bestow on my fiancé after a long day in the office).
And this is my third, yes third, attempt at blogging.
For as long as I can remember I have loved, LOVED, going to a store and meandering into the, get this... office supply section. Yup. Where my Type A people at? Put me near some colored pens and visually appearing paper and I am entertained for twenty minutes at a time. So you can imagine the restraint it takes each time I see a beautifully designed journal filled with hundreds of freshly-bound smelling pages. Most of the time, my impulses kick in and I end up purchasing another diary to (attempt to) document daily life.
I recently cleaned out some old boxes from my childhood and found not one, not two, but six journals. The box also contained other projects from my childhood: the woodworking treasure chest with a missing hinge, the half-colored coloring book, the partially-filled photo album, the sloppily decorated cookies, the purse with an unfinished zipper. After nostalgically picking up each of the treasures, my attention went back to the journals. I noticed something puzzling... All of them had wonderful colors, doodles and stories of my phases-of-the-time (I'm looking at you, 11-year-old-BackStreetBoys-obsessed-Ericka). All of them conveyed the feeling of initiating a project that makes you feel like you could take on the world. All of them began with such high hopes for filling an entire notebook worth of stories and musings. All of them began with such gusto and a zest for documenting daily life.
All of which were incomplete.
Notice a trend here? I sure do. So why in the world would I want to begin blogging again, just to potentially end it a short while later? Why put this project out into the ether just to wait for it to end a short while later? Well, it's simple really.
I want to show that we, those who are chronic-starters-yet-inconsistent-finishers, are not alone.
In a world of beautifully pinned images and exciting instagram stories telling us to live our best lives, I want others to realize that sometimes our best may just be average. In a world of personal-growth podcasts promoting being a boss, I want others to realize that maybe being a mid-level hired hand is okay too.
Wherever we are at is okay.
Beginnings are tough. Starting something, whether it's the first or twentieth time, always seems to require a leap of faith, if only for a split second.
I always feel like beginnings require introductions and justifications. Take any keynote speaker at a conference or TedTalk presenter, and most of them begin with a story about their lives and how they got to where they are today. And in that story they usually land with a poignant punchline, a sentimental story, or meaningful moment.
I wish I was good at delivering those, but I'm much better at being blatantly direct.
I want to begin this blog so that other people out in the world who are always starting and inconsistently finishing know that they're not alone. I want to share my current phase, or obsession, as it's happening in real time so that others can share in the joy while also realizing that sometimes life takes over. Phases pass. And that's okay too.
My hope is that this blog brings validation to others who feel a sense of restlessness in their hearts. It's for the perpetual beginner. It's for the enthusiastic starter-of-all-the-things, the inspired amateur, the gung-ho novice who begins projects yet sometimes doesn't see them all through. The everyperson in all of us that so deeply wants to create and finish and do all-the-things, yet sometimes can barely muster the strength to stay up past 7:55pm (you bet I celebrate 8:01pm bedtimes like I've achieved something great).
I also hope that this project serves as a link to cultivating a safe place for self-reflection and personal growth, all while remaining down-to-earth and real. It's not a put down on other platforms or messages that encourage giving life all you've got. On the contrary, I find those messages wholly inspiring. I just know that it isn't me.
So, I'm hoping to have a format for the next few posts that consist of three basic components: a theme (through which I can frame current goings-on), a phase (an obsession, project, or task I'm currently pouring my heart into), and a lessons-learned section (a space for reflection and call to action).
EMBRACE NEW PHASES
As I begin this first (...or third) introduction to the blogging world, I'm starting to reflect on the pattern in my life that has been so consistent over the years: inconsistency. It has never failed me. Things begin and things end. And I'm realizing slowly that newness and inconsistency is okay.
Beginnings, newness, and starting is all a part of the journey. The getting-there process, life's mundane moments, the between-the-phases process is the worthwhile part. It's the part that we can look back on knowing we grew spiritually or gained something in some way.
So as I begin this reflection of accepting life's phases, and being okay with the moments where projects are stuck in the in-between, I can't wait to look back and see what I'll gain. And I'm hoping that you'll be here along the way to share in this journey, to grow together, whether I finish it or not.