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Sliding Scale

A message hit me tonight. And I really wanted to share it.

But there was this voice in my head saying: That stories already been written.


I agreed with the voice for a minute.

After all, there’s nothing new under the sun.


But then, I heard another voice.


This one said: No one has written YOUR message the way YOU will write it. And it may never reach the person it’s meant to reach unless YOU write it.


I figured this is a specific message that the enemy doesn’t want me to share.


After that, there was an urge in my body to get the message out of my head and onto paper.


I love those moments. The exact opposite of writer’s block - where you just can’t write fast enough!


But, It’s true.

You probably have heard a story like this before.

But here’s mine.


When I think about who I am…it goes something like this:


I’m divorced.

A single mom.

A business owner.

A business partner.

A girlfriend.

A friend.

A daughter.

A granddaughter.

A cousin.


All of these significant relationships and roles are a part of my identity.


Notice what I put first: Divorced.


And notice what didn’t even make the list on the first go round: A child of God.


Both of these are true statements. The first and the last.


But when I view myself inside my own mind, I put the least of me up front.

And leave the most important and true identifier of who I am - last. A footnote.


I think we all have a tendency to do this sometimes.

We’re too hard on ourselves.

Holding ourselves to a standard of perfection.

While we hold everyone else to a standard of grace.


So, to get all of our minds thinking the right way - Answer this question: “How would your best friend describe you?”


-Take a minute and think about it -


They’d probably brag about your best qualities.

The ones that make you so uniquely individual.

They would point out your strengths and their favorite things about you.


So - why do we give more real estate in our minds to our pasts and least favorite qualities rather than our futures and highest and best qualities?

Why do we focus more on our insecurities than our gifts?


To me, it’s a matter of mindset, self love and positive self talk.


(Hold that thought. I’ll come back to it.)


I listened to a talk by Tony Robbins recently and he said people are fulfilled in life for 6 different reasons. He said people find true life fulfillment if they are satisfied in 1 of 6 categories. Which of the 6 brings you fulfillment is different for everyone.


Here’s the list:


1. Certainty/Security

2. Uncertainty/Variety

3. Significance

4. Love

5. Growth

6. Contribution


We’re all wired differently.

But we’re all wired with a need for fulfillment in 1 of these categories.

There’s usually 1-2 items on the list that may mean more to us than the others.


One of my greatest is love.


I’ve been somewhat ashamed of the importance of love in my life.

I’ve tried to push that desire away and be strong and independent and completely fulfilled in life without another human contributing to my happiness.


And I think my season of discovering contentment was one of the most important, valuable things I’ve ever learned.


But God created humans and then put them all on earth together unable to accomplish anything without coming together. He created us for divine relationship. It’s something my soul longs for and one of my greatest gifts. I truly enjoy human connections and the ability to find common ground with people.


So, why did I put “divorced” as my #1 identifier?

When one of the best & biggest things about me is a heart that wants love at every outcome.


This brings me back around to what I said before:

It's a matter of mindset, self love and positive self talk.


Clearly, I was putting my identity on this sliding scale that I don’t always have control over.


Hang onto your hats because I’m about to save you $125 in therapy.


Just the other day - I was sitting on my patio sipping coffee when my phone rang. It was one of my best friends. She is one of those friends that radiates peace and balance.


I started telling her I felt like my mindset was off.

I felt cloudy.

I felt uncentered and complain-y.

I didn’t feel like myself.

My faith and presence of mind had dipped.

I WAS IN A #MOOD.

And I needed to re-focus and re-balance.


I told her how much I was juggling and that I felt like I was about to drop it all on the floor.


She responded with:

“Alex, you have so many balls in the air. And it’s actually okay if you drop them all. You’ll still be a great mom and a great business owner and a great friend and a great person.”


WHAT AN UNEXPECTED RELIEF to not be held to a standard of perfection.


Most well-meaning people give “good advice” on HOW TO KEEP ALL THE BALLS IN THE AIR.


Tidy up.

Be a minimalist.

Parent this way.

Work that way.

Do more of this.

Less of that.

Change this.

Try that.

Oh, and stay photogenic along the way!


To be frank: I don’t need any more “helpful advice.”


Partially because I've learned if you’re lucky enough to have coffee with a really good friend - you may just have what you need to solve all the world’s problems!


That conversation reminded me of the truth of who I am.


And when I redo the list from earlier, it looks more like this:


I’m free and live in the present moment without fear of the future.

I’m raising two REALLY GOOD, FUNNY kids who love God.

I’m blessed to have the opportunity to take a stab at being a business owner.

I have a business partner & that means I don’t have to carry the weight of it all on my own.

I’m adored and affirmed and encouraged and loved by some really, really cool friends + family.

Our self worth only lives on a sliding scale if we allow it.


Our emotions may be like the stock market, requiring constant rebalancing - but our worth has already been determined. It is fixed. And it is finished.


So, let this be a pep talk that renews your mind and reminds you of TRUTH.

You have everything that you need.

Right now.

Within you.

God gives us what we need to conquer each day.

And maybe today that’s just getting by sitting on the floor listening to sad music and feeling all your feelings.

GOOOOOD!!!!!!

LIVE IN IT.

GUILT FREE.

You’re ALLOWED.


Your emotions may need to be realigned.


But your worth is fixed.

You are worth blood shed.

You are worth death.

On a cross.


So, to someone who needs a free pass…

A full pardon…

A standard of grace…


Take it. Receive it.


Because

You

are

still

worthy

and

enough

to

God.


Whether all that you are juggling ends up dropped on the floor, or not.

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