Growing up I was always a vivacious and curious child, I had something to say and I made sure that my voice rippled in the hearts of those that I encountered. I would always think and reflect that there was something more to life than what just me the eye. I wasn’t always clear about the message that I wanted to convey but I what I knew for certain is that I wanted to speak to an audience and tell stories. I was always that student sitting in the front of the class with hopes that the teacher would always call on me to answer questions. I wanted that my presence be known because after all, I just had so much that I wanted to share. I would always be ready to present and speak in front of my class, I knew even than that I would be a leader.
It would soon be revealed to me that media would be the platform in which I would explore and being an expert in. I attended an all-women’s private institution in Boston, MA in which I attained my degree in Communications. My career started in the newsroom, the thrill and rush were intriguing for the first couple of years. Everyday felt like an adrenaline rush, I felt purposeful. This high, quickly came to halt when I started to fully dive into my yearning to living on purpose. I didn’t exactly feel that I was making an impact working in the news industry, I wanted more!
My desire to live an authentic life of service soon became my way of life, and this was revealed to me in my mid-twenties. I was no longer attached to my accolades, what others wanted me to be or perceived of me. I wanted to show up, while using my gifts and talents to serve. Like, most people, I got caught up in the living the secure life, because after all that meant you get a secure job with that includes benefits and an attractive pension plan. This decision would leave me asking even more questions and going back to my childhood curiosity: there has to be more to life?
It wasn’t until recently, when accepting a role that was not a good fit for me that caused my self-worth and confidence to hit it’s all-time low.
I learned some valuable lessons from my journey in working in a job that wasn’t aligned with who I am. This would become a major detour in my life, and one that I am immensely grateful for. Our experiences can be good or bad, depending on how we choose to see it.
I will no longer betray myself
I accepted a role out of fear that there would not be anything better for me. This scarcity mentality cost me my peace of mind, one that I vow never to compromise again. I remember coming into the office every day in a constant state of panic, fearing making another mistake or being asked to perform a task that I didn’t know how to do. I was experiencing a case of performance anxiety, one that would certainly stifle one’s productivity. I wanted so much to succeed and gave it by very best however felt that my best was just not measuring up. I soiled my pillow night after night and meditated with full-intention to find a way out. I often took to a glass of wine to numb the pain that I was feeling, the pain of inadequacy. I also share this with great sadness that I was becoming very unpleasant to be around, I had no energy left for my children. I constantly complained to my partner about my frustration, I began to sound like a broken record.
I will no longer allow a role to define me
What matters most is who we are and not what we are. I landed a job that didn’t resonate with who I am, instead of accepting it for what it was. I resisted it with all of my might because I thought I had something to prove. We do not have anything to prove to anyone, but to live an authentic life. As long as being who we are is not hurting anyone else, all we must do is show up as who we truly are. I would never have thrived in that particular role simply because it was not what I was good at. Not being good at something does not diminish one’s worth. What it did teach me is that, to thrive we must remain in an environment that best suits us and that will assist our personal growth.
It is important to live an authentic life, doing what you love
There came a day, where I just had enough with feeling sorry for myself and also feeling that I was becoming a burden to everyone around me. Like a ton of bricks, this revelation hit me and it hit me hard: you cannot give what you do not have. I knew that I had so much to give and offer to those that I am meant to serve but how could I, if I didn’t have anything else left inside of me? I was determined to shift the perception that I had of myself and the only way that could be achieved was to lean into doing what makes me happy. I am the happiest when writing and sharing with the world inspirational and positive content. I can better serve, when my heart and mind are both in agreement.
I can better be of service to others, when using my gifts and talents
Our gifts may not always reveal themselves right away, but there are constant signs that if we really pay attention we can see and hear it clearly. I was not utilizing my gifts in my current role and therefore did what must considered to be the bold move. Making the choice to resign from my job without having a plan B in place, was scary. However, I found the strength inside of me, I allowed my heart to guide me and I just followed. I drew up my resignation letter, gave it to my immediate supervisor and thanked her for the opportunity. I felt the lightest I had felt in months, prior to taking on the role. This would be an act of love and self-care; the grandest feeling is knowing that you made the right choice for your highest good. We can not move forward, holding on to anything or anyone fearing that there will never be anything better. There will always be something better waiting on the other side of fear, allow your guiding light to take you there.
Using our gifts and talents is a reflection of how we show up in the world, as the authentic masterpiece that we are created to be. “When we stand in our light, we illuminate the path to our greatness.” @Luceinspiration (Click to Tweet!)
These days, I am diving deeper into my own self-reflection, relishing in this beautiful retreat. What I would have discovered at the end of this current journey is how I will choose to show up in the world, serve, and live an authentic life while giving others permission to do the same.
When do you feel the most alive? What is your unique gift and how would it benefit the people around you?
Lucy Coutinho is an Author of Peaces Of Freedom (A Self-Healing Journal), Journaling Workshop Facilitator, and Founder of Luce Inspiration who believes that we are all here to be a full-expression of who we truly are. To learn more about her and her inspirational journey, visit www.luceinspiration.com, Twitter and Instagram.
Image courtesy of Victor Freitas.