Jon Acuff spoke at the Blissdom conference last year, and it was nice, but it didn't really hit me. I wasn't in the right spot in my life for it, I guess. I listened, but none of it hit me where I needed it to - and although I went home with his book, I never read it - it still sits on the shelf above my bed.
This year? I was in the right place in my life for the talk that I heard. I really believe that there are no accidents, and that someone somewhere 100% believed that I needed to hear this talk. Below are my bullet point notes - and my own thoughts next to them. (And I have the new book, and it's next to the first one - and both are on the short list of "read in the next month" must do's. I'm just in a different - possibly more open - place this year.)
*We have a lot of talent. We don't have a lot of honesty. When you are
honest you are a lighthouse to help others avoid the traps you fell in
to.* That is the number one belief I have on this blog - that I will always be honest. I might often be too honest - but I'm not ever going to be known as a blogger, or a person, who sugarcoats stuff, who has rainbows!andkittens!andunicorns! all over the place. I'm real and honest. Not so much because I want to help people avoid any trap, but because I don't think it does any other mom any favor if I pretend like my life is just so easy and pretty all the time.
*What do you do when all of your excuses are gone?* That is a very good question. As moms, we can hide behind our kids for a long time. But what happens when the kids are gone? Are you still you, a different version of you, or someone altogether different?
*Life cycles of life - Jon Acuff explained that our lives contain cycles that, in his mind, change roughly every ten years.
Learning - in our 20's we are learning who we are
Editing - in our 30's we are editing who we are and what our interests might be
Mastering - in our 40's we've clarified who we are, narrowed down our interests and a tryig to master a select few
Harvesting - in our 50's we are harvesting the fruit of our labors
Guiding - in our 60's we are guiding those who come behind us
* Retirement is dead - there is no compensated retirement any more. People are working longer than ever and won't stop. Some can't stop due to finances.
* Anyone can play - The Internet has leveled the playing field for everyone. No longer is distance, location, gender or schooling a barrier. We all have the same chances.
* Hope is boss - Now, more than ever, we live in a hopeful time - with people digging wells for villages, tweeting for food donations, and companies like TOMS that help the less fortunate
*The starting line is the only one that you control - I really do believe this. We all start off in the same place, and it's the only thing we can control. Forces beyond our reach, beyond our mastery affect us in ways that we never imagined when we began our journey.
*Ready is a myth. Nobody is ever ready - smart enough, pretty enough - AMEN to that one. I know that I always feel like there's so much MORE I need to be doing in order to be ready for anything - need to read more on the subject, learn more, talk about it more, and I always feel like I'm 2 steps behind everyone else.
*Start before you are ready. - After all, you will never be ready - See Above.
*Never compare your beginning to someone else's middle - I try to live by this as much as possible. I never know who the other person is inside.
*You have permission to be horrible. Your first time should be the worst time. - I know that I always get so stressed when I'm trying something new - what if I SUCK AT IT? Why do I think I need to be the master of everything? It's my ego, I'm sure.
*WHAT GIVES YOU THE MOST JOY? When you are editing (see up there, in your 30's) chose what makes you happy - I will no longer do those things that I don't find fulfillment in
*Fear is a liar. Fear is not our friend. It doesn't tell the truth. It gets loud when you do stuff that matters.
*Enough. Hardest language for a woman to deal with. Pretty enough, smart enough, etc - Yup. No further explanation needed here, that's for sure.
*What does the voice in your head say to you? Mine says who do you think you are to do anything?
*Ways to punch fear in the face
Refute voices in your head with truth
Write down the fear voices
Share your voices with others
*Fear tries to isolate you - that's why conferences are so good - I love blog conference for this reason. I love seeing my friends, and knowing that those around me just - get it. They understand me.
*Why do we ignore the compliments and obsess about the critical things? - If I knew the answer to this I'd be a hundred thousand gazillionaire.
*Joy is contagious - And so is anger, and fear, and irritation. So I need to make a conscious decision every single day which one I want to spread.
*The unstuck are unstoppable - So how do I become unstoppable?