Are you hibernating or hiding out?

Being brave is not easy. It take practice. For some of us even after practice it still doesn’t come naturally. My friend reminds me that extroversion is preferred in our society, but that 50% of us are naturally introverts.

I have a secret. I have been hiding the true me. I have been hiding the real me from the world and more importantly from myself. {tweet the truth}

I have grown familiar with not being seen.

This is not my default state but I’ve remained small, able to be overlooked, fly under the radar, be a dark horse. It has taken me considerable effort to be seen, and, more importantly, to show myself. Of course there have always been some people to whom I would reveal parts of myself, when it seemed safe, really really safe. Like “speaking up” when everyone else was already chiming in and ranting after a few glasses of wine (when it would not likely be remembered later), or making a request/demand when I was sure I couldn’t be refused or denied.

They say fight or flight yes?  Well I am the master of flight.  Call me an escape artist.

Flight means to run or escape from an event that may seem intimidating, scary or unfamiliar.  The issue with flight is that it is all about misguided protection and not about productive motion. Not only do I have running problem, I do it in many ways.

Sleep. Slumber is good for us. But how much sleep is enough? When does sleep go beyond resting and restoring to become unhealthy? I have always been able to drop and give ya zzz’s pretty much anywhere. It drives my friends who can’t sleep a bit mad. But what looks like taking care of myself (sleep), can actually be about hiding from reality, not wanting to look at what I’m afraid of. I simply get tired and close my eyes to the issue in front of me.

Business. Who is NOT busy right? Everyone’s schedule is as packed as can be. But isn’t it crazy how when you’re in love you suddenly have time for phone calls, text messages, or a weekend trip to Sedona? In a time where we can kill time with the endless texts/facebook/linkedin/emails, not to even mention “productive” activities like doing a load of laundry or crossing off a few items on our never-ending to do list. It’s easy to fill our life with doing. We can easily make ourselves look “important” by simply just getting busy. The constant moving can feel productive or that I was somehow achieving something. I noticed, I would come late and leave early to events. Just being somewhere and not having “something to do” or “busy-ness” made me feel uncomfortable. It meant I had to simply “BE: and that was vulnerable for me to be still and present fully in that moment. You know, scheduling things so close that I would need to just rush off, or by checking my smartphone while in line rather chatting with someone instead. I had no idea I was cheating myself on truly connecting with others.  The truth is we do have enough time for what we need and want. It’s easy to make excuses otherwise, but only you are the designer of your life and lifestyle and schedule. So when I found myself blaming others, my schedule, traffic or fill in the blank.

Isolating. This one is especially tricky for an introvert. I need time to fill my tank and to do this I must be by myself. But, there there are times when there is something going on that I want to do but don’t. Like going to a friend’s art or show opening, a movie or social event. Even though I wanted to go I found myself at home instead, solo with the tv on, yet again, wasting hours watching back to back episodes of Gilmore Girls on Netflix.

Defeat- accepting status quo. When life is unsure and we get hit with a series of roadblocks or bumpy terrain, it’s easy to throw in the towel and say, this is “good enough.” We are biologically built to survive, so grabbing for the lowest hanging fruit rather than truly reaching for we really want (and deserve) can seem justified, right? Every time I make a decision based on “good enough” I don’t feel good. There is a unsettled emotion inside of me.  Mediocrity is not what it’s about. You and I are created for greatness, to expand our selves and stretch across the sky. {tweet that truth} The stars are our example of this. Astronomer, Edwin Hubble was critical in discovering the the Universe is expanding! We are created to continue to expand and grow and not just stay small. I am speaking beyond outcomes but rather about how we feel about the choices and how you are living your life.

How are you hiding? How do you witness other people ditching out? What antidotes are hiding out? (I seriously want to know)!!!

Playing it small is as ridiculous as asking the stars in the sky not shine. Its our purpose to live big and fully. Being seen is not for wimps. But think of it this way, When you allow people to see you, you give the world a gift only you can! {tweet that truth} 

Do everyone a favor and share you today, be seen.

Amy Mattila