It’s amazing how light you can feel, and how easy it can be, to create from a place of natural confidence when you can free yourself from the perception of others.
Whether it’s socially, culturally, at work, or with our friends – we can put a lot of effort into how we’re perceived by others, which can affect how we see and represent ourselves and help identify what’s important to us.
When I run into people I knew from my early 20s, they’re always surprised (but not really) at the rambling path my life and career have taken.
Although the level of confidence I move through the world with now is deeply cultivated, well fought for and stems from decades of internal work, it didn’t happen overnight and it still requires attentiveness and nurturing to continue growing.
As a teen in the 80s, I wasn’t anyone’s idea of a heartthrob, and like a character in any of my favorite John Hughes movies, I was painfully aware of my differences.
- A socially awkward black girl raised Buddhist in the suburbs, with a slightly skewered sense of humor and a tendency to speak in song lyrics
- 95lbs, 5’9 and towering over teachers, after a middle school growth spurt left me standing “above the crowd” whether I chose to or not.
- Filled with a deep and passionate love of books, I had begun to write with a serious, ferociously desperate sense of need – and had yet to reconcile my overwhelming shyness and embarrassment at being heard, with a growing urge to speak.
Although book smart and talented in a school sense, my creative talents – writing poems, music, short stories – were known by only my closest friends and associates and it wasn’t until I moved across the country at thirty did my talent begin to blossom.
Connecting with like-minded creatives, experimenting with the intersection of technology and art, and sparking ideas that embraced a diversity of thought, feeling, and perspectives.