The other day, my business partner brought it up.
"What's up with your Unleashed tattoo? When is that happening?"I felt exposed. I felt out of integrity. In that moment, I was confronted with the truth: I don't feel unleashed enough to deserve it or wear it authentically. It's like that fear of being "found out." Like one day, your boss will come up to you and say, "So, actually, you suck at marketing. I know your LinkedIn profile says that's your 'expertise,' but I see you, and you suck." I experience that when I write these blog posts. "Gosh, what if they realize that I DON'T have it all figured out? And who wants to read about someone bumper-boating around in her own life?" I feel like a work in progress... in pursuit of living unleashing in every moment and embodying that mindset in all I do. But, I still struggle with boundary-setting and my deep-rooted fears. I still wrap myself in expectations and anticipation. I still struggle with being truly present and in gratitude of the now. I'm not my most evolved self, where I ultimately want to be.
Do you have feelings like that? Like you are constantly in pursuit... focusing on the goal and where you long to be? Are you lasered into the day when you wake up and actually like what you see in the mirror? The day you walk into the offices of the company you've always wanted to work for. The day she asks you out. The day that the scale reads 5 pounds less. The day that your parents accept you for who you are. The day you make time to finish that personal project.
Whatever your ultimate goals and wishes are, that "work in progress" mentality, of constantly looking ahead and wanting for something you currently don't have, puts us in a state of deficiency and "not enough." And for all the perfectionists out there - I feel you. This "not enough" can feel 1000 tons more heavy when you are honed in on that final product being FLAWLESS.
I admit, the "not enough" mindset can be sexy and even a desirable place to be. It allows you to focus on a fabrication in your mind, instead of confronting what the present state actually is. It enables you to disconnect from reality and instead daydream about what you don't have, whether that "thing" be a dream job, a romantic partner, self-value, peace of mind, or an overflowing bank account. It's easy to slip into a place of longing and feeling the lack of whatever you long for. But it completely robs you of your life RIGHT NOW.
I'm guilty of sitting in that place. It often takes someone else pointing out that I'm spiraling in the "future" whirlpool, dizzying myself and getting nowhere, for me to actively pull myself out and get into a present place of recognition and gratitude. REAL acknowledgement of what the current moment holds: A beating heart. A roof over my head. 5 bucks for a tasty burrito. 2 hands to create. 2 legs to take me wherever I want to go. Friends who love me and laugh with me. Coconut ice cream in my freezer. The energy to get myself to a yoga class. Take inventory! Anytime you sink into that mindset of "my life start 5 years / 5 lbs / 5 miles / 5 interviews / 5 exams / 5 $zeros from now"... SNAP OUT OF IT by honoring what you have, who you are, and where you're at right in this moment. Your life -- your own personal adventure that you get to lead -- is happening and is worth appreciating right now.
You know all of the lovely quotes about focusing on the destination and, as a result, missing the whole journey. They speak truth. Give yourself credit for what you're currently working with. That your heart is in the right place, even if your mind wanders and your ego vies for your attention.
What my partner helped me realize was that I shouldn't wait to get my tattoo until I really feel like I'm living unleashed in every moment. The tattoo is really meant to remind me of what I'm capable of, not where I'm going or how I'm going to get there. But that I currently have the tools and the fiery desire - both things to be very grateful for. Eff the "end goal," whatever the heck that construct is. It will probably change 57 times by the end of the week. It's not worth the energy. Right now, I'm happy to claim, and CHOOSE, my current state... releasing the self-judgement and future-focused-thoughts so that I do enjoy the journey.