#11 – Get of the bench

Can I be happy doing one thing? Will what I’m not doing always be better than what I am doing? How long will that one thing last until I get bored? Do I just keep hopping from one thing to another, whichever way the wind blows?

These are all rhetorical questions. You don’t need to answer them for me. That is what my therapist is for.

My wife and I are looking to re-decorate our downstairs, so this morning I was spending time on pinterest boards looking for inspiration. In doing so, I came upon some blogs of well respected and admired interior design professionals and it got me thinking. How cool must these people’s lives be?

One in particular was this guy Jeremiah Brent. I started to picture what his daily life must be like.  Going from one party to another, being surrounded by totally fabulous people doing totally fabulous things and every once in a while when time permits, he drops by Jennifer Anniston’s’ house to spruce up her living room with a splash of color and $20,000 couch.

This is all conjecture. I actually have no idea if he does any of this.

So I got to thinking maybe I could have a super fabulous life if I was an interior designer. People would fly me all over the country, New York, L.A., Chicago, Miami to bring life and color into their homes and offices.

Fast forward to the this afternoon, I’m sitting in my dentist’s office, waiting to get the old chompers clean and I start reading about doctors working with their patients at Memorial Sloan Kettering.

So 3 hours later after reading about an interior designer (found at later he is married to Nate Burkus, Oprah’s design guru), I’m imagining how great it would be if I were a doctor at a world renowned cancer center. I would find dinner party’s or weddings to go with the hope that people would ask me what I do, pouncing at every opportunity to say, “I’m Dr. Todd Kelly, oncologist at Memorial Sloan Kettering.” The intention being everyone ooohs and ahhhs at my awesomeness.

Maybe what I’m looking for is an identity. An identity that satisfies my ego, but what I’m realizing is that is impossible. The ego will never be satisfied.

I could be at dinner party as, Dr. Todd Kelly but secretly admiring, wishing I was the television writer, art gallery owner, or business executive. It won’t matter what I’m doing, because what I’m not doing will always seem better and more prestigious to my ego.

Like the gift of worry I have the ability to imagine everyone else’s life as somehow better than mine. I realized no matter what, even if I’m a successful business owner, famous blogger, author, motivational speaker, whatever, the grass will always be greener.

It is like when my son goes over to a friend’s house, the friends’ toys are always more exciting because they are not his toys. How am I any different?

If I’m successful at my business or possibly a yet TBD line of work, will it be enough? Will I find myself still glamorizing other people’s career? If I get what I want and I’m still wondering what if, does that serve me?

No.

What I have right in front of me now is the chance to make a better life for me and my family by doing something I believe I enjoy. I don’t know for sure, but do we really know anything for sure?

I’ve spent the past 7 years building a specialty food business and I’m finally in my place where I feel I have a realistic shot to make.

This idolization of other people and what they do has been a great way of keeping me out of the game.

In The War of Art by Steven Pressfield he talks about resistance.  The mind will constantly invent ways to keep you from doing the work you need to do it, preventing success. This tactic of mine to constantly question what it is I’m doing and compare myself to others is resistance at its finest.

Pressfield says this, “The more important a call or action is to our soul’s evolution, the more Resistance we will feel toward pursuing it.”

I can now recognize my thoughts for what they are. They are distractions. There only intention is to keep me from actualizing my dream.

For the past 37 years I’ve let those voices win. I’ve been taking myself out of the game or worse yet never getting off the bench. Well I got news for you resistance; it’s time for me to be happy, so keep go ahead keep screwing with me, because I’m getting off the bench, so you can go FUCK YOURSELF!!!

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