Measuring Up

I sit here and read through the emails sent to me by friends.  I read about how their lives are changing — about all the wonderful things they are creating. I learn about their relationships with family and friends and how these are changing and how these women are transforming and being transformed and how they are having an impact on their world.  And I find myself judging myself and feeling sorry for myself and feeling competitive.  And the questions that keep pounding in my brain [thank you Paul Simon] are:  Why am I not as creative?  Why is what I’m creating not as big or important or special or unique?  Why are their lives so full and profound?  Why do I feel like I’m out here in a wilderness trying to create?  And I know that none of this is about them.  It’s all about me.  It’s all about competition and ‘measuring up’.  And I wonder if I will ever be done with being judgemental of myself.

I know where this pressure to measure up, to meet others’ expectations, comes from.  It’s so deeply embedded in me that, it seems to me, it hides out in every cell of my being.  Something like the blood which Lady MacBeth could never wash from her hands.  She saw blood that wasn’t there.  It was her guilt at what she had done – her subconscious mind moving in her life when she was asleep.  And so, the scales that weigh what I do and measure it against what others do and create and find it all wanting [not substantial enough, not important enough, not enough], seem to be part of every cell of my being.  They are my subconscious ‘blood’.

And I feel great about what I’m creating and how I’m moving forward in my life stepping away from old story and history when I’m on my own.  And then I choose to share what I’m creating with others and get no reaction – no approbation – and I read about what they are creating and read the encouragement of others of my friends in the emails and, in a nano second, I’m sitting in judgement of myself.  And then, even though I am awake, I am asleep to who I AM.  It’s then that my subconscious mind lets my ‘You Gotta Measure Up’ Gremlin out and I’m back in old ways of thinking, responding, and being.

Every time this happens, and thankfully if happens less and less often, I feel bushwhacked.  I’m taken by surprise that these old habituated thought processes are still there waiting to come out when the opportunity arises.  And I get pissed off at myself because I know that I’ve not, in that moment, been living the truth of who I am.

The thing is that I am now awake to the awesome immensity of who I know mySelf to be.   Falling away from that and into a waking micro-sleep reminds me, as I breathe into how I’m feeling, that I do know who I AM and that the only ‘measures’ I need to apply in my life are to ask myself the following questions and to be silent and let my body lead me.   Am I choosing as a manger or a creator?    Am I choosing from habit or from potential?  Is what I am doing, irrespective of what others are creating, truly energizing me?  Am I choosing those things which light me up?

So, even as being judgemental of myself does trip me up from time to time, it is also the gift of reconnecting with mySelf and checking in with mySelf.  It is a gift in that, being fully awake and alive and responsive to who I AM, I am reminded that I AM is what matters.  I need only continue to internally reference what I do.






About Authentic Vibrations

My life is about learning and personal growth. I was an educator in the public secondary system for over 33 years. I now work with women, individually and in small groups, using words and music, art and language to help them explore their individaul sense of self in ways with are authentically meaningful for each of them. I also facilitate discussions with educators at all stages of their involvement in the teaching profession to help each of us explore the meaning, value and potential of learning and teaching. It is my belief that, in working individually and in collective, we have the power to transform and evolve. In the power of the collectives which we create together is the power to create culture. As a musician, I believe that the arts have the power to change lives. Certification: CODE Model™ Coach WEL-Systems® Institute Affiliate Education: Ed. D (c) (Applied Psychology – Focus on Teaching) University of Toronto M. Ed (Curriculum Development and Design) Queen’s University (1992) B. Ed (Music, English, Elementary Education) University of Toronto (1976) Mus. Bac. (Music Education) University of Toronto (1975) RCM Grade 4 Harmony, Grade 4 History, Grade 9 Voice, Grade 10 Piano Awards: Life Membership, Ontario Secondary School Teacher’s Federation (2009)
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One Response to Measuring Up

  1. eschatzmann says:

    This resonates deeply! Thank you, Jean.

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