heart to heart

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A friend casually mentioned that I’m talented in many areas but not particularly strong in any of them.  We were sipping coffee as we conversed, and the comment slipped out somewhere between a bite of scone and a remark about career paths.

The observation might have bothered me in the past, but I took it in stride and felt pretty okay with the analysis. 
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Thing is, I’m busy exploring and writing and loving and reading and growing.  I’m busy living a life I love. And, perhaps more importantly, I’m busy living a life I’m proud of.  
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Tell me: what use do I have for success?

Success is not a feeling and cannot fill my heart with joy or my days with meaning.  If success comes, so be it, but I won’t waste a second regretting its absence.

31 thoughts on “heart to heart

  1. 🙂 I think there are just so many forms of success that your friend is overlooking. Success in the home, or in personal character. You seem to give amazing service to others, that is an awesome thing to be successful at.

  2. I have changed my definition of success after realizing that I wasn’t finding any fulfillment in my previous job/career path. Now I am a part-time receptionist at a salon so I can focus on staying home with my kids and living life more intentionally. Now I feel like I am on the right path to living a more “successful” life.

    Keep exploring and writing and loving and reading and growing! What you write and show on your blog is a wonderful reflection of someone who is truly happy and living a life to be proud of.

  3. For me success doesn’t mean making the biggest company you can have, all the monetary riches in the world. For me it means happiness in your heart in your own little world. I have to say I’m only partly there, still have a path to get there. xx

  4. i don’t think a successful life relies solely on what you are good at. i think a successful life is a happy one. it’s an odd thing for a friend to say, i’m glad you took it in stride!! also, i happen to think you excel in this blog of yours…it’s fabulous!

  5. I think there’s a necessary strength that comes with being talented…and you certainly have a strength/talent to care for the people and community around you! Which sounds like success to me, girly! 🙂

  6. Success, to me at least, is that feeling you get when what you are doing sings in tune with your heart. It has nothing to do with money, fame, or societal accolades. It is all about living true to yourself, which sometimes takes more courage than the path littered with the aforementioned money, fame, and accolades. Kudos to you for living true to your own path, you have helped redefine what it really means to be successful 😉

  7. You know people shouldn’t off their unsolicited advice. Why is it in this day and age everyone thinks their an expert of everything and their opinions are golden? Maybe it is all the “sharing” online but your friend should keep her opinions to herself if it is not asked for.

    Allie of ALLIE NYC
    allienyc.com

  8. You are INCREDIBLY successful and do you want to know why!? Because you are HAPPY, you feel fulfilled doing what you love and you are darn good at it (would all of us be commenting/following if you were not!?) Good for you for keeping your head up and not return the kind of bittersweet comment with one that was abrasive. You are clearly on a wonderful path and I cannot wait to see all that is in store for you xo

  9. Success is loving life, playing the hand you’ve been dealt to the best of your ability, and making the world a better place. From what I have learned about you, I’d say you’re mighty successful. Keep doing what you’re doing. You make a difference.

  10. Hey Friend! I was having a similar conversation with myself yesterday too! When I read your post I stopped short …. “Thing is, I’m busy exploring and writing and loving and reading and growing.” Love this! I was worried I was spreading myself thin, too much going on. But then I realized I’m LOVING everything I’m doing. I’m exploring. I’m adventuring. Growing. So, thank you … we’re in the same boat here 😀

    ps – me thinks we need a coffee date soon 😀

  11. You absolutely could not have described success in a more perfect way. I agree! Life is about just enjoying and living. We have to create and seek those moments that bring us happiness. If we’re striving for success solely, I don’t see much happiness as being part of the equation.

  12. I often feel like this about myself as well. I have a lot of hobbies and things I enjoy, but I’m not *really* good at any of them. Sometimes that makes me sad, because I do think it would be really fun to be REALLY good at one thing… and then be in the Olympics or something. But I do like doing a lot of things instead of focusing on just one.

    • amanda, this comment is so helpful and truthful and inspiring. you perfectly get what i’m trying to say and how i feel about being what my high school counselors called “well-rounded.” i thought about how you compared yourself to an olympian, and you know what? i think we’re just as lucky. as impressive as being mightily talented is, it also comes with the burden of staying focused and on-track and honing a particular skill. so… win some and lose some, right? we can be well-rounded together and cheer on the people with uber-talented and successful 🙂

  13. It sounds to me like you have achieved “success” already. 🙂 I am like you: I love many things, but don’t necessarily excel at one of them. I am okay with that, though! I love your outlook.

  14. Hmm Success is a funny thing and it comes in all shapes and sizes. and this is hard- but you shouldn’t measure your success on what others think. and since I have gotten older and hopefully a tiny bit wiser- its not really about success its more about how happy and full your life is. (if that makes sense). 🙂

  15. I can relate to hearing what your friend said about you. I have been described as a jack of all trades, but a master of none. My own professional pursuit (currently in pursuit of the career I want) is an ambling one. Sometimes, I think being honest with oneself results in not doing the socially acceptable dance we’re expected to. Thanks for sharing!

  16. Talented in many areas but not particularly strong in any of them? Hm, that’s making me think. Is she referring to the fact that you’re diversifying your interests rather than choosing one thing in particular to excel at? Because if that’s the case, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with your present situation. I’m a bit the same. I used to be more driven and focused in my career and a couple of other things (like singing). Now I’m so busy trying to spend as much relationship time as I can with everyone, I’ve let many things slide to just a trickle. And I have no regrets. Spending quality time, loving and devoting myself to my husband, friends and family is the most important thing for me now. Yes I have talents, I have things that I enjoy and I still do them, but they’re not a driving force and I don’t care if I typically ‘succeed’ or not. None of the acclaim in the world will matter in the long term. So if you’re anything like me, I hear you sister! Thanks for sharing your heart in these posts. You are AMAZING xxx

  17. Pingback: soulful goodness | apartmentwife

  18. I feel like I’m very much this as well. I’m a “jack of all trades and a master of none”–there’s no one thing I’m known as the go to girl for, though I can do just about anything I decide to do. It can be a strange feeling, to perhaps not have your “thing”…but living a life you’re proud of is far more important than success anyway.

  19. I just loved this post. Your words are always so beautiful. 🙂 Success is something that I have always sought after. I have always had to have it. And I am just learning that maybe that isn’t a good thing. Maybe you need to just stop, smell the roses, and live your life. Because, aren’t you more happier that way? Thank you for sharing these wonderful words!

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