Last week, amidst glittered business cards and sequin headpieces, I was asked for my advice on blogging. I had hopped a flight to Salt Lake City to spend a whirlwind 48 hours manning the blogging mentor table for Altitude Design Summit, a conference that will always be dear to me in that it was the first entrepreneurial summit I’d ever attended, something like six years ago?
And so, here I was. Steaming coffee and a pulsing high-altitude headache, with a braid in my hair and a notebook in hand. I’d assumed I’d get a variety of questions (I’ll share the most common ones later this week, along with my answers), but it seemed that most ladies simply wanted one thing:
Permission to follow their gut.
Over and over, women sat down in front of my table – weary eyes with a single, fading spark – and said, “I want to be here, at X, but I just heard that I should be arriving here, at Y. What do you think?”
Run from the Y, I’d say. Run far, and fast, in the opposite direction of the should. Because the should – the Y – is a path that is not yours. It is a path for someone else, a path that very likely offers reward, but it is not your own. You found your own when you said “I want to be here, at X,” and isn’t that half the battle?
We spend so much time longing to find our X – our path – and if we’re lucky, it is revealed to us through a series of terrible jobs and sleepless nights and endless failures. And then, we find it, sweet and lovely and lush and green, but we clear it away looking for Y – this shiny, emerald city of a path that was never intended for us.
And so, my advice was always the same: You have found your X. You are here. Let yourself be here, and let the Y be there. Now, get to work.
So to you, friend:
If your X is a mother who finds joy in baking veggie muffins and finger painting with your toddler, run far from the Y that says you must accomplish more.
If your X is a nurse working the night shift who finds peace in comforting the sick and the hurt and the confused, run far from the Y that says you must be at home, vacuuming.
If your X is a blogger who finds fulfillment in writing and connecting and learning, run far from the Y that says you must have a book deal and a TV show and a larger Instagram following.
You have found your X. You are here. Let yourself be here, and rest in the crux of this spot, this day.