Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Real Talk Tuesday: Pride driven success.

I want to be successful.

I have always been driven to do well. It has ups and downs but overall I like this side of me. But with a drive for success I am often fueled for more.

In my early 20s (shoot, saying things like confirm I am getting old) I was given/dumped on/acquired many different roles. From different parts of my job to volunteer roles to things I started/joined, people told me often that I was responsible, wise and capable beyond my years. I don't say that to brag. I think part of it was my sense of responsibility and part was the way people look for someone "capable" to give things to (or dump them on) and people who like achieving gladly say yes. Anyway, these roles fueled my success drive. I liked being responsible, leading, looked to and capable. So I grew in roles, took on extra ministry opportunities and said yes, a lot.

Fast forward to my late 20s...

I have a lot of different passions and desires. I have entrepreneurial ideas, dreams, random ideas. I get on kicks of starting something new, looking for a perfect job that is meaningful, making my business the full deal, starting a hand crafted shop, creating greater ways to connect with and help people, etc. The list goes on.

But I do not have one defined role right now. To me this feels less successful. I don't know what to say when people ask, "What do you do?". I do a mixture of things but none of them feel like "enough". I am not looked to as a leader in the ways I formerly was. I see people starting successful new businesses and creative ideas and I want to jump on the wagon. Inside my heart is screaming,
"I am capable! I have great ideas! I want to do awesome things! I want to be successful!"

This flares up and down. But when it flares up, I feel discontent. I feel irritable. I tell my husband about it and he encourages me a ton but he also calls me out. He points out that I shouldn't just want success for successes sake. I shouldn't feel like less just because my role doesn't look like it used to or like others'. And maybe my success is different than it was at 22. I might not be "ahead" for my age now, but that is ok.

There were great times in those seasons but I don't actually want it all back. I don't want to run around like crazy with multiple big roles, feel dumped on, feel only valued for my ability to do whatever is asked of me and lack balance. I don't want to be tied to my inbox all day responding to clients. I don't want to do things just to feel good about my level of success. I don't want my roles to be all about me.

I am not saying success is bad. I think it is so good. But I know, for me, I have to pay attention to what is fueling my desire for success. I have to notice if it is leading to pride and driving my decisions. Hopefully I'll learn a great balance of big dreams and big action accompanied by great humility and paying attention to God's leading. And the art of contentment.

So how do we work hard, achieve dreams and succeed with balance? I think we have to define some things and ask questions along the way, a lot. 
What is the WHY behind what I want?
What do I want to fuel my success? 
What does success look like for me? 
What are the triggers that success is about pride and becoming unhealthy? 
Am I defining success like I'm created for or like I see someone else living out? 

I hope these thoughts are encouraging, helpful and challenging. 
I'd love to hear your story or thoughts! 

Because I can't blog without photos, here are some photos... Representation of some of the roles I identify with. These are meaningful parts of my life.  But no matter the role, may I be present with my creator, those around me and opportunities.

No comments: