Be your own Superhero, create one here.
On Mother's Day I participated in a fabulous gathering of women, you can see a few of my photos here, or read what others had to say about it here and here.
One thing we did that day was name our Superpower.
Something we're really good at.
Have you ever done that? To recognize something you do really well, and honor it? And have a room full of people honor that part of you too?
Amazing! Highly recommended!
Mine is Risk Taker.
I've used it for a while now, on my blog, on my business cards, and just recently on my new website: artist, risk taker, dreamer.
So I've actually been naming and honoring three of my superpowers for a while now.
How powerful to finally stop and notice that.
Here's a short list of some risks I've taken in life, to give you a taste:
*moved to Japan straight out of college
*backpacked around Asia for 4 months with no plan
*moved to Europe without a job and only one nebulous contact
*applied to and got accepted into graduate school wanting to study something I had never studied as an undergrad
*hitch hiked in Baja and had the best conversation in Spanglish ever (don't tell my mom about that one)
*started a nonprofit organization to teach gardening and permaculture to children
*took belly dance lessons, performed as a belly dancer, taught belly dance lessons
*opened a belly dance studio on Main Street in a small rural conservative town
*traveled to the far reaches of New Mexico as a student of shamanism
*created a weekend get-away women's gathering not knowing who would actually want to come
*shared my art with others (a lot of others)
But I'll have you know that despite taking these big risks in my life, they haven't been "easy."
I've been scared. Worried. Anxious. But excited too.
For me taking risks brings on a whole wave of emotions and feelings. And they're usually all over the place.
Yet somewhere, somehow, I've taken them.
And I'm grateful for the ability to do that.
(Or is it because I'm crazy? Ha!)
For a long time now I have been pursuing a creative path in my life. Wanting to earn my living through my creativity. I still have a day job, but with each path I've taken (see list above), I've discovered who I am, what my values are, what I believe in, what fills me up, and what makes my heart sing. It's been like traveling into the center of the labyrinth, getting closer and closer to my own soul.
Allowing myself to finally paint, to create art, after so so so long of just wanting to has revealed a nugget of pure gold. I have been circling in to who I really am, and now, my heart is so full.
Yet with all this focus on my creative path, my soul's purpose, I have been silently ignoring another area of my life that needed dire attention. It was easier to focus on what made me feel good, rather than on something that only partially did. Denial is a powerful elixir and addiction.
There have been signs along the way, tugs at my heart, stirrings in my gut. But this risk taker didn't want to notice them. Oh no. WAY TOO scary.
A couple weeks ago, that something, that little whatever that resides deep inside me, pushed me to take the biggest risk I've ever taken. I had to face fear after fear. No guarantees. No safety net. No idea of where I'd land.
I've been pretty freaked out.
I've caused pain. I've messed things up. I've shown a spotlight on the shadows that are dark and scary.
The dust will be settling for a long, long time.
But deep down, deep deep deep down, I feel the rightness of what I did.
In the resulting chaos that is now my life, I can also see a small light shining on the horizon, reassuring me that what I did was okay. That it needed to happen. Not just for me.
And that there is hope waiting there for me on that horizon.
Welcoming me. Singing me forward.
Step by step. Moment by moment. Through the tears. Through the anxious breaths.
Another layer peeled away.
It sucks a lot of the time.
But other times, blessedly, it doesn't.
I will keep taking risks. Of that you can be sure.
Even though it isn't easy. Especially because it isn't easy.
Honoring your superpower, and actually using it, will take you to the most amazing places.
Even when it doesn't seem like it.
Honor it anyway. Share it with others.
Let's celebrate our superpowers together.