I feel schizophrenic sometimes. I embody multiple voices. One extra loud voice passionately screams, “GO LIVE YOUR DREAMS!” Another one mutters in judgment, “Don’t be ridiculous. Work harder and pay the bills.”
I’ve always attributed this duality to my parents: my practical, introverted, uber-successful father, named one of the “Best Dermatologists in Pittsburgh,” VERSUS my extroverted, spirited and inquisitive mother, deeply loved not only for what she does, but who she is. I’m proud to say that I’m well trained to be and live both frames of mind.
Somewhere along the line, however, I was convinced that I could only be one, i.e. I can’t be business minded and spiritually in-tune, I can’t be a lawyer and a yoga teacher, I can’t make money and live the beauty of my dreams. I have to choose one path and stick with it.
THE RESULT: an inauthentic life.
First, I went the full-on dreamer route–struggling actor, struggling activist, struggling yoga teacher–with the intention of spirit and joy. Yet, there were lots of struggles to pay the bills, save money, give to others when I didn’t have enough for myself. My passion diminished.
Then, I tried the practical route–lawyerdom. My intention was to apply that struggling activist thing to this practical route, but I came up short. So much of me was missing. The spirituality was nowhere in the equation.
Here is what I didn’t say about my parents: they’re still together, there is no “versus.” Their incredible, contradicting selves have complimented, pushed, and expanded one another for over thirty years. In other words, their contradictions are what makes them powerful, trail-blazing and influential.
Passion and dreaming is the fuel for wildly-successful fulfillment. Practicality and strategy is the how to get from point A to point Z.
If you’re not fully living these trail-blazing contractions, waking up with joy and passion and still able to pay the bills, then it is time to re-evaluate what magical voice in your head is muffled.
Be large. Be your dynamic self.
“If wisdom comes from integrating the highs and lows of life, then fulfillment is the result of bringing your whole self to the game. All of you. Not just the politically correct and the well-behaved bits. Not just your master’s degree and certifications. And not only your unbounded passion–because putting your passion into form will take all of the mental muscle that you can flex.” -Danielle LaPorte