What holds her back?

Personal development can be S-L-O-W. At least mine. In 2008, my friend Clay (he changes online personas constantly but this may work) sent me this exercise.

The refrain in my mind is ‘I wonder what holds her back?’

Who Do I Fear I am?

Who Do I Fear I am?

In your journal draw 3 concentric circles.

In the inner most circle write the question ‘who am i?’

Next circle write the question ‘who do i fear i am?’

In the outer most circle write the question ‘who do i pretend to be?’

See what comes up.

Eight years later and I’m still working on this exercise. I just turned 48. I fear I am boring, ordinary, obsolete, and p.s. the collagen in my skin isn’t quite so elastic as it used to be.

I pinged Clay about this recently, and noted my life had no “chaos”.

Clay quoted Seneca to me (the heart of  my younger self who studied Latin for 7 years sang) “Excellence (Valor – the Latin translation is more nuanced) withers without an adversary.

Is there something between absolute chaos and obsolescence?

There are times that I am frustrated that life doesn’t have the “restart” button that most online games do.  Sometimes I wish there were a “do over” button, but I appreciate Collins’ candor in Good to Great re: starting and assessing where you are. He even has a worksheet.

What holds you back? Who do you fear you are?


One comment on “What holds her back?
  1. Clay Lowe says:

    From your post, I gathered you have an answer for the middle circle, who you fear you are (“boring, ordinary, obsolete). How does that interfere with who you are? And who do you pretend to be to compensate for the you, you fear you are?

    I’ll have to read Good to Great. Sounds interesting. Oh and here’s a question for you if you could hit the “restart” button right now, what’s the first thing you would do that would be different from what you are currently doing in this iteration of the game?

    I’m thinking about the “do over” button because I think that’s different from a “restart” button. But what are your thoughts on that?