I've been asked to write about my greatest accomplishment for a blog contest called Lovable Labels BlogHer' 11 Getaway Contest held by Lovable Labels ( http://www.lovablelabels.ca/staticpage.aspx?id=67 ). It just so happens this topic is perfect because it fits snugly into some ideas I have been pondering over the past couple of weeks during my big move to Florida.
Superlatives. In the past they've been quite important to me. As a gymnast I felt pride in holding state championships. In high school I gushed over my 'best smile' superlative in the yearbook. Even recently I completed my first marathon and felt incredibly accomplished. Who doesn't like winning? Being on top? Doing the impossible?
So why do none of these incredible life accomplishments of my past and present feel worth writing about?
My whole life I've wanted to be perfect at everything. The perfect gymnast with the perfect form. The perfect student with the excellent grades. A perfect friend who is always there for everyone. And I've always needed everything around me to go exactly as planned.
But now here I sit in a coffee shop in a new town. I've been in Pensacola only one week. The shop is not perfect. It's sort of retro meets modern fusion. I prefer something more cozy and rustic. The coffee was expensive and I am sitting at the bar area where I can barely reach my keyboard. I spent about 45 minutes walking around town with my lap top bag in 90 degree weather only to find no place that suits my coffee/blog writing atmosphere needs. So I settled into a not so perfect place, with a not so perfect cup, and not so perfect ambiance.
But unlike my past self who always needed everything to be perfect, I'm smiling. I'm smiling like I've never been able to smile before. I'm smiling from deep within myself. And I'm smiling because things are not so perfect.
I believe this to be my journey toward my most incredible accomplishment of all.
The accomplishment of being. The accomplishment of feeling proud, happy, and passionate about life, simply because, I am who I am. The accomplishment is learning to grow and change and deal with all the imperfections in the world and see them not as a nuisance, but as an opportunity. An opportunity to thrive and be content in who we are.
With all my past and recent accomplishments as well as all my slip ups and mishaps I am reminded of my journey. Every step of my life is part of my journey right now. My move to Florida, my trip to the beach last night, my good morning kiss to my husband, my sweltering walk around downtown, my imperfect cup of coffee... it's all part of the process. And recognizing that even the bumps are important? Well that is an incredible accomplishment.
I am not finished with my journey yet. In fact my journey may last the entirety of my life. But being on this journey feels like my greatest accomplishment yet. I am grateful for every opportunity to practice just being who I am, finding patience and tolerance with everyone around me, and finding a greater peace from within. After all, don't those components really help me to live a much happier and content life? And ultimately as a writer this allows me to pass on my understanding of life to others and hopefully spread a little joy and compassion. As long as I'm spreading words of love, I know I am on the right path.
I'll leave you with a quote from the Dalai Lama:
By developing greater tolerance and patience, it will be easier for you to develop your capacity for compassion, and through that, altruism.
And what could be better for this world than peace, happiness, and compassion for others? I can't think of anything.
BPositive and BFree to BE!