Our stories don’t have to define us. But we can use them to speak to others.
In a “blab” (a recorded type of interactive podscast) two weeks ago I was gifted by one of the participants with a treasure. (To see the blab, click here: replay blab on boundaries in relationships. ) Something I call a thought treasure, it’s a mental gift.
A thought treasure is the kind of gift that opens and expands your mind creating something new. Something that was just a concept before that moment.
I’ve often said to my students that their mission is something that only they can accomplish, but this hit me in a whole new way.
One of the gentlemen in the blab conversation, Michael, made an amazing life-turnaround. Formerly homeless and an addict, diagnosed with mental illness (bipolar), he has spent the last four years putting himself back together. With the wisdom, guidance and love of the amazing Juliet Easton, he has begun to step into the most powerful version of himself.
In coaching the couple on the video blab, we were discussing his writing. He’s a gifted sci-fi writer who is filled with creative ideas, story lines, and pages of out-of-this-world concepts.
His question is one we all ask ourselves: “Does it matter? Does my writing truly make a difference? Who will read it? Who will care? Should I do this or will I just fail? Are there better writers out there? Am I fooling myself?”
And this is where the gift appeared: heart-centered coach Eric Graham dropped a thought treasure on us.
“Yes it will matter. Your story matters. You are the only one that can use your gifts. You came here to use them, and people will listen. You will be able to speak to others in recovery, in a way that I can’t. You’ll be able to speak to those people that are or were homeless, in a way I can’t. People that have gone through the trials and difficulties like you will listen.”
In that moment something clicked, in a way it never had before. Our voices are all distinct. Our work is distinct. It’s us. We don’t separate ourselves from it, we ARE it. It’s in us. And we must share it.
Your story matters and your words or songs or art will reach the ears of those who have gone through something similar. And only you can say what you came here to say: no matter what your medium.
Art. Inventing. Writing. Speaking. Helping. Serving. The world needs what you came here to do.
Creating a new version of our old stories filled with pain is never easy, but maybe it’s the one thing we came here to do? Rewrite. Rewrite a story where we become a hero in it.
I’ve often thought of how many skilled martial artists there are in the world that can do things I can’t. How many exercise instructors look much more like fitness models than I do. How many inspiring writers and speakers there are on the planet that I admire. I think of these things every time I create. But I’ve been gifted with an intuitive voice that says to me, “they aren’t you.”
I never knew how great the impact of that voice until I heard Eric Graham say aloud what had been only a concept in my head. Your voice will inspire those that it’s meant to, and your work is very important. If you don’t do it, it’ll be left undone and the world will miss it. Someone else cannot do what you can, in the way you can.
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Photo courtesy of the author