You Must Believe In Yourself

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Conversations with my 6-year-old daughter, Titi are almost always amazing and inspiring.

Every morning, she starts her day with something like,

“Mummy, I had the strangest dream!” I encourage her to go on. “I dreamt that I built an amusement park called ‘Titi HappyLand’ and all my friends came there….”

She goes on. “They paid 10 pence to get on a ride and they were all happy!”

My 10-year-old son interjects at this point,

“Titi, 10 pence is not enough to charge people!” I smile, grateful that it isn’t me breaking the news to her. He continues to give her executive advice, “Titi HappyLand will close down very quickly at that price, Titi.”

Titi frowns, clearly confused.

“Ok…eh..”

She makes a funny face and a thinking sound as she drums her fingers on her lips. Her eyes are staring up at the ceiling.

“Ten POUNDS then, ” she announces, finger now up in the air emphasizing the eureka moment with the word “pounds”.

As I listen to this and other inspiring ideas my children often throw around, I wonder at what point their belief and confidence will become cornered by the world. When will society tell them it is too hard to build an amusement park and call it ‘Titi HappyLand’?

When is it that we start to doubt our capabilities and believe in our incompetence more than we believe in our capabilities? I wonder.

The truth is, confidence wanes when we allow people or society tell us what we can and cannot do. We have people in our lives that laugh at our dreams and undermine any changes we try to make.

We become cynical about real change and progress, betting that “it won’t last” or “it won’t work”. Many times, we are afraid that we will fail or that we will not be accepted as we are. The discouraging words we accept into our hearts stops us dead on the track leading to our dreams. Before long, we become people who say negative words to others, doubting anyone can do that amazing thing they want to try.

I fell into the same trap of doubt but in the last few months, I have revisited my dreams. I can do stuff! I just needed to stay still and listen to myself. I was afraid and uneasy with the uncertainty but now I have a glimpse of what could be. I haven’t gained any new knowledge or skill. I have simply peered into the world of my dreams and I now have the nerve to believe I can make my dreams come true. It doesn’t mean I will evade failure. I may fail at first but you can bet that I will keep trying to succeed.

What would you do if you had nothing to fear? Would you follow your dreams?

Image from flickr.com user: Jennifer 
- Rainy Day Inspiration :: You Must Believe In Yourself
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Weekly Photo Challenge: Colours of the Rainbow

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I cannot simply appear at my final destination

It’s a journey that needs focussed determination

I see possibilities dressed in the colours of the rainbow

When I reach a “viewing point“, you will be the first to know

—-
Image by Tambako the Jaguar on flickr.com
Words by Yekemi Otaru a.k.a The Task Mistress

Blogging Review: Why I’m Rubbish At Small Talk

For me, blogging restarted in March this year. I wasn’t expecting to do so little blogging in 2013 and I did even less in 2014. What triggered a restart?

It wasn’t just the quantity of writing that worried me. The depth of it was unlike me…there was a lot of small talk with very little to go on in terms of how I was feeling about life in 2013 and 2014.

Then fast forward to March 2015. Blogging has become deliberate. I owned the fact that writing helps me verbalise my thoughts such that I can move on quickly.

I got great encouragement early on such as the pleasant surprise success of “I lost my mojo. Then I found it on a plane.” I tried out a different writing style with that blog, more present in the story. It seemed to work.

I occasionally take part in the weekly photo challenges. I have to confess that those take very little effort compared to my musing but I’m always surprised by how many people read/engage with those. WordPress promote those well and I get the most likes with weekly photo challenges.

A small portion of people engage with deeper thought provoking posts such as my recent one, “My Early Midlife Crisis: Bear, Manoeuvre or Heal“. I expected more attention for that post for sure.

The first half of 2015 has seen me blog more and blog honest. I have had to pause to wonder if I should please the majority of folks with more weekly photo challenges and small talk or whether to say what I want when I want regardless of who might engage.

I will need to keep blogging for me and I hope that’s ok. 

But I wonder: 

What makes you read and engage with a post on a blog?

The Dark Side of Crazy

What do I call this? Paranoia, perfection or just plain crazy?

Whatever it is, I want to it make it the reason why I put out the best work. It should be why I’m reliable, dependable, honest. But countless times, the compulsion to do the right thing is the worst thing about me. It often backfires or it turns out it just wasn’t worth it. No good turn goes unpunished as they say. But I can’t ALWAYS do the right thing (I do want to so badly…).

An overactive conscience, a judging voice from within? Who knows.

What am I learning these days, you might ask?

Well, I’m learning to put myself on Mute.

Three weeks ago:

A young lady gave me a pound for the swimming pool lockers one day. It was an awkward exchange. I asked if she had a pound and she said, “Sure…” and handed me a £1 coin just as she walked out of the changing rooms.

I couldn’t believe it! I didn’t know her name or anything! How in the world am I going to pay her back??

Fortunately, I spotted her last week leaving the gym as I was getting there. I ran after her, on to the street and across the traffic lights. Then I lost her. I couldn’t see the street she entered. Sigh.

I have an extra £1 coin in my pocket every time I go the gym in hopes that I can return it to her. I know what you’re thinking. She probably doesn’t remember me, right? But I’m convinced she’s laying awake at night thinking, “I can’t believe that lady never returned my pound!”

I hate my mind sometimes.

Sobering up: the good, the bad and the absolute worst

As I get over the ‘high’ of corporate life, I reflect on the good, the bad and the absolute worst things about being alone – and at home – with my personal transition.

the good
a. One and a half hours longer in bed
b. Having only one mobile phone (I keep looking for the other one)
c. No demands other than making sure family is clean, fed, watered and spoken to (easy!)
d. Exercising in the mornings – fantastic start to my day
e. Nurturing my ideas…plotting, creating, building – great stuff!
f. Watching lots of TV, brain numbing stuff but I think my brain is grateful
g. Not dressing up to go out – need to be careful that I eventually do have a shower though
h. Drinking lots of tea (I no more need coffee but missing my usual “small cappuccino”)
i. Being more patient as I’m less in a hurry equals less shouting at my poor children (yay!)

the bad

a. Waking up in morning with no plan for the day, so I often just lay there
b. Missing my work phone – it made me feel important
c. Missing deadlines and solving problems – it made me feel important 
d. Worrying that my exercise routine won’t last once I find how to fill up my time
e. Having ideas then physically restraining myself from doing too much about them
f. Watching lots of TV, brain numbing stuff but and I think my brain is grateful gravy
g. Missing dressing up to go out to work – it made me feel important (yes, there’s a recurring theme!)
h. Missing the chat around the Costa coffee kiosk at the office
i. Being impatient when I have to pick up after my family – I used to have a job!!

the absolute worst

Realising that my job defined me so much. It’s why I took setbacks to heart. It’s perhaps part of why I had to stop and define myself some other way. High definition…loading…

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