Inspiration! Ideas! Recipes! Quotes! Exercises! What are you promoting, pinning and passing on? I know there are a bunch of dramatic or cute pinny-type pictures and quotes floating around the electronic world, and they are mostly inspiring, funny, saucy, or sweet. Whatever you’re drawn to, recycling, or reminding yourself about with pics and phrases on boards or “books”, ask yourself: am I using it? Or have all those chiseled abs and cute smiling puppies become forgotten ideals or blacklisted to-dos? Is any of it really become part of your life today? When it comes down to the nitty-gritty of your everyday life and relationships, are you practicing what you pin?
I ask these questions because so much of what we put up, pin, and pass on is an expression of what we want to be or embody in the world. (At least it is for me it is.) It’s what we wish we had said in that difficult situation, a fresh perspective on something, an alternative to our norm, or an aspiration awaiting. Much of the essence of our posts represent what we want to be or see in the world. For women especially, much of what we are drawn to is an expression of being true to ourselves. Because often we are not.
Despite what the sunset-over-the-ocean quotes claim, being true to oneself can be horribly uncomfortable, difficult, and may cost you some emotional coin or even an entire friendship. Maybe someone took offense to what you said at a board meeting. Perhaps time for yourself is unsupported by your family. Or the time has come for you to draw a figurative boundary with a neighbor, whose dog keeps crapping on your lawn. Whatever the case, staying aligned with your integrity while simultaneously balancing your wants and needs with what the world is asking of you is a professional-level interpersonal skill, chosen and developed. Not always but often, being true to you will piss somebody off. Especially if you’ve been kowtowing your “true to self” to him/her for any amount of time.
A couple issues have come up for me recently–actually they’ve been up for me for a long time but awaiting my decision. Basically I have been faced with balancing being true to myself with being polite. How do I draw boundaries, kindly and lovingly? Honestly, I haven’t had any real mastery with this. In my lifetime of violated boundaries, I have had the luxury of “Can we talk about this?” or “No. You go fuck yourself.” Not this time; I can’t sit down with anyone or walk away.
It sounds silly, but I’m thinking: “Isn’t there a pin for this? I wanna say something clever here and I musta posted something–I’ve read a thousand things about this, where are they in my brain? Can I go with the Buddha quote or the Someecards blurb? Did Wayne Dyer tweet anything worthy on the topic? I just put one up last week on Facebook about this…how did it go again?” I want all that great stuff I post to support me now, in my time of need! Where are you rainbow kitty pictures?
This made me wonder if the stuff I’m reading, liking, pinning, and posting is helping me to develop the skill of “true to self”. And it made me wonder if all those fitness, exercise, and diet posts with chiseled abs n buns really help those that are struggling with fitness or weight loss. I want value from my online connections and habits, don’t you? Are all these ideological snippets wasting my time or assisting me to steer a clearer path? Ask yourself the same. Do they work as a catalyst to being true to yourself, working out harder, or eating more healthy lunches? If what we are wanting is to be “true to self”, and all our pins and posts are about exactly that, then WFT? What are we missing?
A skill becomes a skill with practice, whether it’s tying shoes, speaking your mind with grace, or doing 50 days of squats. Your pins become habit and true resources when you use them–you practice them. Re-mind your mind regularly until those cool quotes, exercises, or inspirational blurbs are programmed into your grey matter. If you love your fitness board then look at it daily. Find more fitness pages on Facebook or Twitter to follow and check them regularly. And when a difficult situation arises that’s uncomfortable for you to navigate or there’s a day in the gym you’re stuck, using the board you’ve created in your brain will be easy. If we’re not practicing what our pins, posts, and pass-alongs, whats the p-ucking point?