Ever since I was a little girl flipping through Seventeen mag, I’ve been obsessed with becoming better. I don’t know that I could have put those words to it then, but in hindsight I’ve always been interested in the concept of how some people have the capability of being a ‘high performer’ or seemingly living their dream life, while others are constantly riddled with sick bodies and past-due bills; living their seemingly most average life. Spoiler alert: not everyone actually aspires to live their dream life.
Ever since the days of Seventeen magazine – I’ve been afraid of living an average life. I think it’s subconsciously why I dropped out of college (twice). Because if you really think about it, going to college in 2019 is the most average thing that you can do… Everyone goes to college. In 2019, everyone is pretty. Everyone has a nice ass. Everyone has the picket fence house. It’s not enough to do the things that used to be not so average anymore.
Speaking of college, fall is here & now. Even though it’s still hot as balls in the afternoon, we can feel it in our bones that fall is here. There’s something so unique about the fall season that, if you let it, can inspire you to live that not so average life. The Autumn Equinox is a day where the lightness of the daytime and the darkness of the night time are exactly equal. Nature, herself, celebrates… both. Because let’s be honest, nature has a lot of darkness (ah-ehm; hurricane Dorian). But she celebrates having both. She doesn’t try to hide it and she’s certainly not ashamed of it. She acknowledges that for every ounce of beauty, there is an equal but opposite ounce of ugly. And in my opinion, the whole leaves falling thing is her letting go of the idea that we need to only be pretty, perfect, balanced, good, successful, wealthy, healthy and on the right track.
We all know this, but it’s the struggle that pushes us forward. It’s the winter that puts us in such a dire need to enjoy spring. Otherwise we get stuck in the trap of contentment; and endless summer.
Here’s a lie of contentment’s: You can’t start over.
Circling back to fall, nature essentially starts over EVERY. SINGLE. YEAR. Always new, always fresh, always on her toes. Because there is IMMENSE power in transition. Even though sometimes it looks like moldy leaves piled up in your neighbors ugly pumpkin themed garbage bags.
I’ll say that again; There is immense power in transition.
If there was ever a time to change or start something new or scrap alllll of this and begin again, it’s right now. It’s at any point in your life, at any second. But especially in the fall. There is an energy backing you and propelling you and encouraging you to start fresh & I know you feel it. It’s why it feels somehow right to go back to school in the fall and to get our shit together in the fall. It’s not nostalgia, it’s energy. Go with it.
Because here’s a truth of contentment’s: We are disarmed when we become content.
The second that you feel like things have fallen into place and that you finally are on the right track, is the second that you’ve lost all of your gains. I know that’s a harsh statement, but think about it: how far has happiness propelled you? How far has despair propelled you? It’s that state of being so uncomfortable with our lives that forces us to squirm our way out of discomfort.
Those people that I’ve always wondered about? The ones that are always sick and always broke and always complaining about something? It’s not that some of us are more fortunate or blessed than others, it’s that some of us have a lower tolerance for what we deem comfortable. Am I suggesting that people are content with their seemingly average lives? Absolutely.
I went to San Diego a few years ago and was taken back by the homeless population that lives there. I was told that the churches, the volunteer groups, the government have all try to provide for the homeless and even give them jobs so that they could provide for themselves. The overwhelming majority either denied the help or returned back to their state of being homeless after only months of tasting success…. WHY? Have you ever asked a homeless person if they simply like being homeless? They’d probably say no. But subconsciously, they probably do like it. At least enough to tolerate it. The ones that absolutely fucking hate it, get out. They move on to usually much better and greater things and have a bad ass story to go along with their success. Us ‘more fortunate’ couldn’t possibly wrap our heads around being homeless. But that’s also why, you’re reading this from your iPhone 11 right now.
It’s not good or bad to have a low or high tolerance for contentment. Contentment is completely subjective and it always will be. What makes you comfortable and happy and makes you feel like you’re ‘living your best life’ is different from me. But it’s also not permanent, and that’s also where I believe the high performers differ from the rest; they’re willing to pivot.
There is absolutely zero power in doing something or being a certain version of yourself simply because you’ve been doing it for a long time. No power… none.
It’s actually killing you.
It’s making you stale.
Being willing to pivot is arguably the best life skill to acquire. It can apply to any area of your life and help you to stay afloat when bad things happen.
Nature pivots all of the time. The fire in the Amazon? (As in the rainforest, not the warehouse..) It’s fucking awful. But Mother Nature will literally pivot, and come up with a solution and do it with grace. She will kindly stick her middle finger up to all of us for thinking that she didn’t know what she was doing all this time. I’m excited to see how the planet heals from this, because there is power in transition. Climate change? The climate is supposed to change. We’re supposed to change. Fires happen because we stopped being open to change.
As the next few weeks bring more and more autumn, try to reflect on the areas of your life that you need to become free from the idea that everything needs to stay exactly as it is right now. Let it go. Let go of the aspiration of doing this whole life thing ‘right’ and having it all together, and instead embrace the oddly fun challenge of pivoting. Something doesn’t turn out how you thought? It’s an opportunity to strip that tree of it’s leaves and start fresh. Someone disappoints you or betrays you? Be more like fall and change. Brush your teeth with your non-dominant hand… That’ll really throw you for a loop. Go vegan for a week, see what happens.
There is power in consistency and routine, of course. But always be open to scrapping those routines and replacing them with new ones as often as possible. Embrace the power of transition and starting new. Let it propel you towards something better.