Lately, I’ve been thinking about my life and the direction in which it’s going. I wake up everyday having to struggle with the idea of being a full time writer versus going to a 9-5 everyday. There is constant tension between my desire to be a millionaire and my desire to just do what makes me happy. In saying this, I realize that it doesn’t always have to be one or the other, one can be happy and a millionaire, but I’m curious as to what my desire should be. Did millionaires seek happiness or did they seek money? Did they seek both? As a writer, should I desire a million views a day or should I desire that I express myself through my writing every day whether anyone else reads or not? Should I be intentional about marketing or just let the chips fall as they may? If I’m strategic, am I in-genuine and attention seeking? If I’m not strategic, am I wasting my time?
The answer that I received was this: it depends on your heart. Is your heart to genuinely help others or to gain validation from their approval? Do you want to be famous and well known? And if so, you have to dig deep within yourself and answer the question of: why? Often times, we desire “new” or “better” for the wrong reasons. It’s possible for us to get those new and better things; but we should want them for genuine reasons. I should desire for many to read my blog because I know that I have a message that can help others; not because I want the attention and accolades that come with others reading what I write. I should desire for the message to be shared because it’s an expression of me and not because I need validation from others that I’m actually a good writer. In so many areas of life (relationships, careers, artistry, friendship, etc) we have desires because we feel they’ll validate that we’re worthy, needed,wanted, good enough, beautiful strong, etc. But we shouldn’t want something so that it can validate our worth. We should know that whether we EVER get the “new” or “better”, we will always be worthy, beautiful, needed, good enough…etc.
Despite what we believe, no person, crowd, or amount of likes will ever validate us in the way that we desire to be validated. I’ve found that the more I believe in and love myself, the less stressed out I am about whether or not people “like” me. As soon as I begin to focus on being validated by others, I get so anxious that It makes me want to turn away from what I’m doing for fear that no one will like me. I stopped doing poetry because I was unsure if my next poem could live up to the “greatness” of my last poem. That fear has stifled me in the area of spoken word because I became way too focused on the applause of others and forgot about the love of the gift and the beauty that came with it.
The balance between strategy and nature will come the more we seek God for the help.While still working hard to be the greatest that we can be,we just have to continuously check our motives. We have to continuously and consciously remind ourselves that whether or not we get the likes, the applause, the job, the man, or the fame; we’re still worthy. We’re still talented and beautiful. We are still needed and we still matter. I’m beginning to believe that once we get to that point, everything else that we desire will just come.