Category: Best Of
My favorite thing in my Facebook feed today was a text image from Madonna’s page:
(I want that on a t-shirt.)
When we talk about finding your voice, we’re talking about your ability to own it. Your voice is not just what you say and how you say it, but who you are.
Which is maybe why we’re so quick to imitate other people’s voices. If it worked for them, so our reasoning goes, then it should work for us, right? We can hide who we are behind who we think we’re supposed to be.
When you own it, you drop the act.
You come out of hiding. click here
(On Dec 5, I spoke at one of the 220 independent TEDXWomen events that were organized around the world. I plan to blog about the day — it was an amazing day! — but in the meantime, here is the transcript of my talk.)
I have a confession to make.
When I was a little girl I would write obnoxious things in my diary.
Things like: “Life is so exciting when you’re someone like me, good at school and writing and sports!!!!”
Or: “When I grow up I’m going to be a world-famous novelist.”
Or: “One day I’ll rule the world.”
Actually I never wrote down that I wanted to “rule the world.”
But I thought it. I was that kind of kid.
I wanted to be great.
(Or a career as a soap opera actress. But I would settle for greatness.)
Then, a few years later – when I was maybe 12 – I came across that same diary when I was cleaning out the drawers beneath my waterbed. (This was the era of waterbeds.) I saw those scrawled words of my younger self, and felt…
…mortified. click here
Five years from now, you’re the same person except for the people you’ve met and the books you’ve read.– John Wooden
1. Desire begins in the mind (and so does reading). click to tweet
2. Reading is mind-to-mind, soul-to-soul contact.
3. Reading has the power to shake up, transport and transform you.
4. A book can make an excellent prop over which to peer coyly at your victim.
5. Books can be subversive and dangerous, filled with ballsy ideas that ride motorcycles too fast, in the rain, without a helmet. click here
Confession. When I was a little girl, (age 8) I would write obnoxious things in my diary. Things like:
Life is so great and exciting, especially when you’re someone like me, good at writing and school and sports!!!!!
One day (age 13) I came across that diary when I was cleaning out my bedroom, and felt mortified by my egocentric and deluded younger self. I threw the diary into a big black garbage bag along with the other junk and never saw it again.
Recently (age 40) I came across a quote by singer Edith Piaf (1915-1963):
I had a very high opinion of myself. Perhaps with good reason.
That kind of blew me away. For a woman to not just think and believe such a thing, but to say it out loud? Dude. That takes ladyballs.
One thing I’ve noticed lately in my conversations about women, reading books and magazines about women, listening to other people talk about women, is that everybody seems to take it as a given that women as a group have low self-esteem. A lot of this seems to be attributed to the fact that, bombarded as we are by an insane beauty standard, most of us don’t look like supermodels – a.k.a. ‘genetic freaks’ – and don’t consider ourselves beautiful. Boo hoo. click here
And by the way, everything in life is writable about if you have the guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.
― Sylvia Plath
If you have the calling to write, do yourself a favor and listen close. It won’t go away. It will chafe and grow inside you, a hard determined pearl.
If you wait too late to start, you will regret it.
Start now. What the hell. Buy a notebook and pen and go somewhere on your lunch hour and write something, anything, even if you’re just writing about not having anything to write. Enjoy the play of language. Get to know your mind in the way that only your writing can show you. click here
“Creativity is the greatest rebellion in existence.” — Osho
1. The purpose of education is no longer to fit yourself to a career, which might or might not exist (at least in its current form) by the time you are ready to enter it. The purpose of education is to give you the foundation to enable you to create your own path.
2. Study human nature. You understand others through understanding yourself; you can understand yourself through understanding others. Without that understanding, your art will probably suck.
3. Life doesn’t happen in sequential order (build career/find mates/have kids). The version you carry in your head of how your life should be was probably cobbled together from movies, TV, other forms of fantasy handed down by a culture that wants you to buy stuff. So junk it. Redefine success. Embrace the mess. There’s beauty in the imperfection. click here
Recently some friends and I tore up the dance floor. So much so that the organizers of the event came up to me the next day, called me a ‘dance machine’ and said, “You were out there with your crew until the bitter end. You guys set the energy level all night.”
And it occurred to me that some of the happiest moments of my life have been on the dance floor, whether it was some grungy rave club in San Francisco or sleek VIP scene in Miami or Marie Antoinette themed masquerade in Los Angeles or retreat in the Utah mountains run by people well aware of the power of an excellent DJ.
It turns out that dance actually does make you happier. Jane McGonigal lists it as one of the ‘happiness hacks’, writing in her book REALITY IS BROKEN:
“Synchronizing physical behavior to music we like is one of the most reliable – not to mention the safest – ways to induce the form of extreme happiness known as euphoria.”
Other happiness hacks are to: click here
“It’s not what you’ve got. It’s about how brave you’re prepared to be.” — Seth Godin
It is time for you to go on an adventure.
It is time to unlock your soul’s code
and confess what you know
You need to do with your life.
You are not yet what you need to be
The journey makes you what you need to be
The journey owns you.
Resistance hurts yourself and others
(You die in drops and inches.) click here
Fall down seven times, get up eight. — proverb
Traditional story structure has what’s often called an “all is lost” moment, when the character appears to lose everything and the goal seems forever out of reach.
It’s basically a symbolic death.
The character has to die to his old way of seeing things. His world view is shattered. He’s fallen and he can’t get up.
He must undergo a fundamental shift in perspective, a change in the paradigm through which he sees the world.
When this happens, it’s a symbolic rebirth.
He becomes the phoenix rising from the ashes, a new version of himself, equipped with the insight and wisdom he was lacking before.
The story gets going again, takes an unexpected twist (otherwise known as Plot Point 2) and barrels down the home stretch toward climax and resolution. The true sign of a character’s growth and maturation is his ability to self-sacrifice. Often he gives up the very thing he thought he wanted in order to get what he needs, which puts him in service to something or someone he loves. click here
1. You don’t get to choose your calling.
I guess that’s why it’s called “a calling”. We can’t choose what calls us; we can only listen close – and have the courage to accept what it tells us.
Callings can be so damn inconvenient.
They usually arrive as some form of pain.
They’re an itch, a yearning, a slow deadening of the soul, a restless knowledge that you are meant for something else, if you can only figure out what it is.
The body knows. Finding your calling can be like that child’s game of hot and cold. When you’re moving away from your calling, the body treats that as – cold! — nothing less than self-betrayal. click here