Recently, a beloved sister in The Creative Sisterhood shared an article that struck a nerve with many women in the community, including myself. It brought up beliefs around what it means to be successful, the sheer exhaustion of striving, and the glorification of the Type A perfectionist in modern day culture.
Through the sharing of our own experiences, it quickly became clear to all of us that healing is needed around the not-enoughness we often feel as modern day creative women.
But this idea of making peace with mediocre feels half-baked to me.
While it is reclaiming your own sense of well-being as the true measure for a full and happy life, it is still comparing it to the standards of conventional society – deeming it mediocre.
The dictionary definition of mediocre is “of only moderate quality, not very good.”
So if embracing a slow life of tending to your beloved garden, knitting while your cat sits on your lap in the evenings, reading books on the porch at sunset, and working a job that makes you enough money to keep doing all those things that bring you joy…I wouldn’t exactly categorize your life as “of only moderate quality.” I would characterize it was purposeful, sacred, and freaking amazing.
My point is this: what brings you joy and pleasure and purpose is the only thing that really matters.
Where we get tripped up (even me…still) is when we compare it to the stories and images we are presented with on a daily basis with the headline of “wildly successful.”
And I don’t mean to make this all sound so simple.
The transition we are all experiencing (from the linear model of success to a more felt sense of life pleasure) is deeply healing work.
The system of patriarchy that has ruled society for thousands of years tells us that if we follow the straight line that is laid out for us, everything will be ok. Work long hours, keep your head down, don’t make a splash by being too different, and you will be rewarded in the end.
But I am telling you this:
You don’t need to suffer in order to succeed.
You don’t need to keep striving in order to make your dreams happen.
You don’t have to do it all on your own and never ask for help for fear of appearing weak.
You don’t need to hold it all together all the time.
You don’t have to do it the way your mother or father or brother or boss or mentor did it.
If it doesn’t feel good, stop.
You are still incredibly brave and smart and worthy of everything you desire. It is when you remember who you are, your true nature, than all the striving becomes less important.
Because you have found devotion – something far more invigorating than blind ambition.
I want to hear from you:
If you weren’t afraid of what other people would think, say, or do what would you do?
Share in the comments below, sister.