With all the changes during this first week of the new year, I found myself in the position of being more thrilled to start something new than reminiscing about the past. A new phase means endless possibilities. Letting my mind wander into the unknown, looking for signs of direction, really helped me feel alive. The energy I feel inside right now is nothing less than amazing. Actually, it’s almost overwhelming; I cannot wait to see how this year unravels for us.
As long as I stay focused on my shiny new idea, I am energized. But, this week, when I went to tie up a few loose ends and send my past into the black hole of remembrance, I became a little hesitant.
(Uh oh. It’s serious time.)
If you’ve ever re-created yourself overnight, you probably know what I’m talking about. Even if you haven’t, if you’ve ever had a job, and then moved on to something completely different, you can probably relate too. Our work is what defines us. Its’ ‘Who we are’. And, it’s why Americans ask one another, ‘so, what do you do?,’ almost instantaneously as we meet someone for the first time.
Trying to explain what I did previously was a little tricky for me. On an internal, personal level. When I started blogging 2.5 years ago, I was very resistant to the idea. I had no idea how much I would enjoy writing, and I certainly didn’t define myself as an author. No, I defined myself as an honor graduate of psychology and business school, on a mission to start my own business. But, as this traveling act that I am, this business had to be creative – and portable. Blogging seemed the logical way to start and see where it could lead.
Over the course of two years, I felt pretty good about my accomplishments. I had tangible results and measurements of my success. A persona was created to relay the message and branding of my soon-to-be business.
Through this persona, the blog celebrated it’s birth with a week-long, online Birthday Bash, and started a secret gift-away club. We journeyed through a powerful 28 Days group led by The Gift Curator, who committed to writing each day, a guide on how to renew our Spirit of Giving, just in time for the biggest giving season of the year. And, we enjoyed 21 Days of Gratitude together, right before Thanksgiving. This persona created memories, tangible results, connections and unique interaction among it’s friends and fans.
And, I went to press Delete.
Sure, everything looks good on paper, when described in the manner above, right?! But, my heart and soul did not feel good. They felt disconnected, and inadequate for the task. Somewhere along the way, my little character portrayal as The Gift Curator began to dominate my personality. I started losing the rest of myself.
I kind of felt like my husband’s wedding band after it accidentally got beat up in the garbage disposal one time. All of a sudden I was a little rough around the edges and not quite myself. I just didn’t fit anymore.
The message of The Gift Curator was serious, heartwarming and soft. But, Carla! Now, Carla is different. Sure, she can be serious, heartwarming, and soft; but she’s also snarky, cynical, and comical – plus lots of other things (good and bad). Carla is not one-dimensional. Carla cannot be placed into a single little box. Nope. Carla is crazy! She will tear up that box and put the remnants out with the recycling.
So, I fired myself. Last week. On New Year’s Eve, to be exact.
Help me through this, friends. Remind me that change is good, necessary and empowering. Remind me that I have you to hold my hand through this year of self-discovery. Push me to do the hard work involved in reconnecting the little parts of myself that have been scattered. At the end of this year, I hope to feel as smooth and beautiful as my husband’s reconditioned wedding band.
Until tomorrow –
Cheers & Champagne,