The Subconscious Lie We May Be Accepting
There are a few moments we can all look back on as pivotal points in our creative journey; our “Creative Leaps” if you will. When I left my corporate job to figure out what that was, a couple of them stand out as particularly revelatory.
I wanted to take some time today and dive into one of the most widespread lies we trick ourselves into subconsciously accepting. It’s something that I’ve heard repeated in different conversations, almost word for word each time and something I did for over 20 years.
And it’s this:
“The things i’m naturally good at, couldn’t possibly be things I can build a career around.”
If that confuses you, or resonates with you, that’s ok. Being honest right now, will help to set clear direction going forward.
It’s also easy to read that and say “I would never do that!” You may be the kind of person who has always known what you were called to and how your talents played into that. You might have started hustling from a young age in your pursuits. People like you do exist and frankly, i’m incredibly envious. Teach me your ways.
For most of us, it takes arriving at a crossroad to have an honest conversation about passion and talent. For many, getting to that crossroad takes going down a different road first, only to find it wasn’t what you expected.
Let’s look at ways we may be keeping ourselves from using our natural talents or interests, to inform the journey we’re on.
How We’ve Progressed
Some people, figure out how to bring it all together early on. They identify something they are passionate about, where their skills line up and they take off. If they aren’t quite ready, they begin to build the necessary skills. Most of us however, spend extended time being told to prepare identifying what we’re “passionate” about in college. Once we get to college, it often changes. Once we’re out of college and actually in the workforce, it probably changes again.
Which brings us back full circle. It brings us face to face with the question “what the heck should I be doing with my life?” It’s only once you’ve gotten to a point of asking that question honestly, that you begin to take stock of what makes you, you.
Our entire journey may be a progression of one particular system. I’m not saying whether it’s good or bad! I think school is amazing and valuable and one path is by no means the correct one for everyone! I do think, we can get caught up in developing skills that happen to appeal to the more structured, secure and linear way school moves us forward. The reason this is relevant is because it’s easy to think that once you’ve started along a path, there’s no going back. You’ve invested time and resources to a particular study or interest, that has to be the answer, right?
The things you study aren’t bad and may very well be what you are naturally talented in! This isn’t meant to contradict that. But if you find yourself at a crossroad, having difficulty identifying the skills, interests or callings you should be focusing on, perhaps it takes digging into something separate from the educational path you’ve been walking on.
Sunflowers and Conversationalists
I recently talked with Co-Founder of Dubsado, Jake Berg about this very idea. We arrived at the conclusion that something he has always been passionate about is growing things, very obviously manifested now at Dubsado. But when I asked him about the first time he recognized that interest, he didn’t mention a business venture or some coding project. He talked to me instead, about sunflowers.
When he was at a pivotal crossroad moment in his life, he took to a hobby of his which was gardening. More accurately, the simple act of planting. He gathered some sunflower seeds, cultivated them and watched as they grew under his care. The process was cathartic and informed a desire to do build and grow things in all of his endeavors.
Now, instead of growing sunflowers, he’s growing a company. The thing is, he didn’t learn he would be good at that because he had built a wildly successful company in the past. He had an idea that he would thrive in that process because of the sunflowers. The simple things we love doing, can often be the most crucial indicators of what we will be successful at, yet we fail to acknowledge them.
I love engaging with people. I love making people felt heard and known and connecting in a genuine way. I have always been able to make conversation with everyone I meet and find some way of establishing a meaningful connection.
Never did I consider that that particular part of my character, apart from just “being how I am.”
It wasn’t until this year that I began to wrestle with this thought. The crazy part, is that once I began taking this idea into consideration, I found that a whole world of possibilities began to open up. Identifying what I should be doing (or maybe what I wanted to be doing), in whatever context I was in, became easier. Today, so much of that, informs my role at Dubsado and beyond!
What are the things that are “just you?” Have they been under your nose your whole life, waiting to be identified and utilized in this moment? Leave a comment and let’s figure it out together!
To your “Creative Leap”,