There is a hole in me I have been trying to fill. I have been searching, reading, writing, thinking. Nothing fills it. I write about cowgirls and houses. I feel restless, wanting. What am I looking for? Where will I find it?
Megan "Joy Girl" guest blogged at Erasing the Bored recently, where she said,
"I’m in a relationship now with someone who respects me, wants for my happiness, has compassion, and uplifts me when I’m feeling down. He is mirror, reflecting back to me the truths I now feel about myself. As such, he’s shown me that in the last few years I’ve grown to love myself much, much more than I ever thought possible. But he’s also shown me that I have a ways to go."Donald believes that I am whole and raises me up out of my low self-esteem haze. He can't imagine what I think might be missing. I teeter at the edge, believing that I have lost my identity, that I have no idea who I am. How do I find my way back?
Several of my favorite bloggers have posted about getting rid of clutter. I see my identity reflected in the things I own, the things that surround me. My stuff defines me because it represents my choices and tells people what is important to me. Perhaps I will uncover my identify by clearing out the clutter.
Communicatrix summed it up pretty well in this post when she said,
"So. The “why?” Well, clarity, for starters, or more clarity. Freedom, definitely. Tired of feeling bogged down by my environment, and trapped (rather than supported) by my stuff. As the piles start to dwindle, though, I get the sense that this particular stripping down is me getting ready to say, “I’m a writer; this is what I do—I write.”"Janice at Sharing the Journey has written about this several times, too, most recently here. Dani at positively present also supports the decluttering goal.
The catch, though, is that in order to only keep what I need, I need to know what I need, so I need to know who I am. What do I think I'm missing? Do I really want to be more like that cowgirl? Do I really feel drawn to the West or is that just my imagination and romanticism talking? How do I figure out what I really need if I don't know who I am?
I'm supposed to listen to and trust that inner voice. How do I know I'm listening to the right one? Or the real one? I change my mind about projects often, throwing myself into something only to abandon it a few weeks later. I don't want to live that way.
In an earlier review post, I talked a little about making decisions based on what I thought other people would think of me. Nadia at Happy Lotus writes in this post when she says,
"Years ago, if you were to ask me what kind of clothes I liked, I would not have been able to answer because my choices were based on what I thought I should choose."I have done this more times than I can count. Those decisions did almost nothing to make me happy. I still often defer decisions because I have no idea what I think or want. Does this mean that I have no idea who I am?
My self talk goes downhill, saying "I am happy, but..." or "I would do this, but..." I spiral into second guessing myself. I worry about the danger of flying off and doing something spontaneous. What are the costs? What do I risk? What are the consequences?
How can I possibly make a good decision when I don't have enough information about who I am to know that I am acting with integrity?
(Have I made you dizzy yet?)
Lance at the Jungle of Life posted a Sunday quote that pulled me out of the spiral. There is so much to gain.
Evita's guest post at The Bold Life reminded me that bold steps must be taken and that it is safe to trust our inner voice.
At Quest for Balance, Lisis' favorite post of her own explained that everything I need I already have.
Peggy at Serendipity Smiles reminded me that I will not find what I am looking for outside of me. I need to look inside.
I am learning to hear my own voice. It is not a failure to be unsure of what I think about everything I encounter. Instead, it's an opportunity to learn more about who I am and can be.
The hole is gone. I am no longer spinning. I filled it with a list of things I know.