Sunday, January 20, 2013

*Great Revelations - part I *

At a café last Saturday… New Moon + 1 day

O, sweet sounds, those innocent and sincere voices.. Where, when, with whom? Strange but a very familiar motherly feeling sweeps me into a trance like state. I close my eyes and my mind wanders, into the soul.  Hoping to find the answers within the fog of the past where only the soul can find its way about. Or, are these memories to be found in the future, in a future life perhaps? „Regard, regard“, The little boy says with wide open eyes, pointing to a stack of games and puzzles up against the wall, getting the attention of his baby sister.   Oh man, how I just want to take those two beautiful French children softly into my arms and hug and kiss them.  Where do these feelings come from? Little children speaking French whip me into a creamy caramel pudding every time. Always have, always will probably.

I am sitting in one of the coziest little cafés in Reykjavik city center. Retro sofas from the 50‘s/60‘s, wooden floors, wooden tables, framed tapestry art on the walls, and yes.. the kitsch poster of the little sad boy from the 70‘s on one wall. Blend of hot coco aroma and newly brewed coffee in the air. Old fashioned lamps in every corner, casting a comfortable warm light, making the darkness outside bearable. Tea lights on every table. It can be tough this darkness, the Icelandic winter at its peak. January 12th, Saturday afternoon. The day is getting longer, it‘s true, but I realized it yesterday driving home from the summerhouse I had  been snuggling in since the 6th of January, that perhaps it is the twilight that makes us so tired and weary.  It‘s unusually warm now in Iceland, considering the time of the year, the temperature rocking above and below zero, so there is no snow to brighten things up a bit. Then I started noticing the dusk, the dimness. „We must be owls in disguise“, I said to my boyfriend who was driving the car home, with his eyes peered, watching the road. Trying to squeeze a bit more light out of the 3 o‘clock twilight.

The adorable little French children just toddled out through the door into the darkness, their small hands clasping their parents‘. Probably a bit tired now those little ones, it’s soon supper time.

I came here 'cause I wanted to write something, the first post of 2013. A lot has happened since the New Years. Maybe not happened but surfaced; new feelings and revelations. The first came to me just a few days ago, and what an AHA moment it was.  Here it comes: The key to happiness in relations to your career is to absolutely focus on what you are best in! What you excel in! I know, I know, those are the most frequently spoken words of wisdom from every self-help book we know of, but bear with me, it is not that simple. First of all it can just be very hard to find out what that special something is, and secondly when you do find it out, many of us fail to believe in our own strengths, so we fall again and again into the trap of not stepping into our greatness. We also keep comparing us to others, what ‘the others‘ say we should be doing, what makes money, what the world needs at this moment, etc. And sometimes it's just because our greatness, just happens to fall outside the grid somehow!

 In my case at least, the search for my greatness has not been an easy task. It has been going on for a loooooong time, even to the point that I feel comfort in defining myself as a 'late bloomer'.

For the greater part of the last couple of years, I have been pulling myself in all directions, agitated wondering why other people haven't been seeing who I am all about! I used to ask myself over and over again “why aren't they reflecting to me the answer I keep looking for? I felt the mission, the BIG, GRAND soul mission within me, but I didn't know how to manifest it into a career. Who was I? What was my project? Well I knew the project, but who was I within it? What was my part? Why wasn't anyone telling me by reacting to me in a certain way? Wow, talking about being insecure, not knowing, wanting others to somehow fix me up!  Haha..  I know, we can be such good teachers to others, and give great words of advice. But often when it comes to guiding ourselves, figuring things out for ourselves for us, we are sometimes clueless. We cannot see the forest for all those trees.

A good friend of mine told me last year, that I had to learn how to claim my space, so to speak. It was a great revelation. It was. In communication, when working with other people, if you do not have a very finely carved out business card, you need to tell people what you are all about. Tell, show, do! It is as simple as that. At age 21 I was still figuring out ‘what I was going to be when I grew up’. My sister and I laughed so hard at this intimidating sentence one afternoon during the summer of the first year of our new millennium.

We were on our way to do our jobs as substitute cleaning ladies. As effectively as we could by the way, considering the newly installed ‘IF brain’.  Only a few months earlier I had been a store manager, working for one of the most popular fashion stores in Iceland. But after a year in that position the ‘IF brain’ introduced itself.  What IF this is not it? What if greater, grandeur, happier, more fulfilling and more thrilling adventures are just right around the corner? 

So I quit! My sister quit, and my friends quit. We all quit! We went to the bank and got overdrafts, and had ourselves pierced with all kinds of immunity shots and started acting out our dream to travel the seas! Travel the world. We were going to become travel, slash, TV stars in Iceland. It was one crazy, absolutely gorgeous idea that was so avant-garde that it was bound to be a great success! In Iceland people love new things in art and culture. Plus, the world had only seen Lonely Planet as a hands-on travel show, one man/woman travelling, reporting almost live, all the time, all that he/she was experiencing, as it was happening. But we, we were going to add to the mix the relationship, the communication, the lows and the highs of four girls travelling together; even before we had heard about ‘reality TV’. Completely exposing ourselves knowing that in return we would be sponsored to see the world! What could possibly be more exciting? We were going to Egypt, China, South America, Africa, Australia; it was going to be great! We called ourselves Innsýn, or Insight in English and the show was to be called Adventure. Simple. The meaning of the word saying everything that had to be said. 

After two months of working towards our common dream we had heard a lot of ‘wows’ and “cool, go for it”, and “what a great idea”.  From TV stations and prospective sponsors we had also heard a lot of “if only you had talked to us sooner”, “our budget for the year has been accounted for”, and so on. We had to down-scale our idea from ‘around the world’, to USA, to Europe, to Eastern Europe, looking for Dracula in an old Transylvanian castle. We had very promising responses from a well-known international company, that is for the year after if we could only wait and come again. And we did manage to get our camera gear sponsored for the trip. But the overdrafts were close to being maxed out, the days were getting shorter, the grapes were just turning sour. We had to face it. It was ‘Game Over’ for Innsýn, we were thrown out of our beautiful cloud castle and it was time to grab that broom.  

At that time the whole thing felt like one big failure. But there was magic in the name!  Living those two summer months was definitely like a reality TV show to us, and a few months later we realized what a GREAT ADVENTURE the summer of 2000 had turned into.

Nostalgia! So sweet and sour. Well, back to present times, continuing with my big AHA moment just days ago. So there I was, only just realized that I absolutely had to ask myself that big question, once and for all: “What is it that I do best? “ Not compared to others but personally, when weighing up my own skills and passions.

And my answer was “Being a visionary”. O man, what am I going to do with that? ;) ;D