Go Deep, Not Wide
I hear this message over and over again from family, friends, coaches, and mentors. Even my Inner Voice has made it a mantra. So, why is it so hard to get through my thick skull?
A Multi-Passionate Creative
I definitely claim the multi-passionate creative label popularized by Marie Forleo. So many areas of life truly light me up! I find joy, purpose, and flow in writing. Science, health, and nutrition fascinate me even as much as it confounds me. Shaping my children into thoughtful, kind-hearted, and independent beings who are happy and healthy fills me with purpose and satisfaction. I love to be outdoors with my bare feet touching the ground, listening to the bird’s chorus, as a light breeze caresses my skin, and the sun shines down on me like it is now. Quality time talking and laughing with friends feeds my heart and mind. Reading and talking about spiritual mysteries nourishes my soul. My desire to serve by helping others pull through the struggle and darkness of crisis drives me forward. And yes, the list goes on.
Of course, passion is awesome. Passion fuels a positive vibration that energizes me and so many others. It inspires delicious ideas, hearty action, and exhilarating hope. And…
And, much of the time, my passions leave me feeling like a squirrel hunting for nuts before the first snowfall! I want to pursue all of them at once! I’ll begin by focusing on one inspired action and then listen to a podcast or read an email that redirects me to another area of passion. Or I set up my week to go an inch deep and a mile wide in several different pursuits. Unfortunately, I don’t make much progress on anything and end up disappointed.
Go Deep, Not Wide
When I air my frustrations, the feedback I get is invariably “Go deep, not wide!” Time and time again, I hear this. Intellectually, I get it. It makes perfect sense. And yet I persist. But why?
My seemingly ceaseless companion, fear, distorts my thinking. Harasses me. Fear tells me, if I don’t do it all now, it will never get done. That nasty voices insists that time is short; running out. It bullies me into believing I am not enough and that I need to prove myself NOW! And actually, new messages have surfaced over the last couple years of illness, “If you don’t do it now, you’ll forget and it will be lost forever.” And “You’ve wasted so much time, you haven’t fulfilled your life purpose yet; get on it!”
But you know what? Fear is a jerk! He may walk by my side, squawking his horrible noise, but I don’t have to listen. I have a choice. It’s my decision who and what I listen to. I have the divine privilege to choose what I believe. We all do. I’m so tired of fear! He’s bullied me for so long that often I forget his voice is not my own. My own Inner Voice is loving and compassionate, wise and patient.
Silencing the Fear
Choosing to silence Fear and tune into my Inner Voice requires dedicated attention. Until it becomes a habit, I need to focus on the choosing: Go deep, not wide. I must counter Fear’s insidious claims; that idea will be waiting for me when the time is right. There is plenty of time. I am enough inherently. Write it down. Life is a journey; I fulfill my purpose by allowing the unfolding.
I am teaching myself to make these choices; practicing them over and over. In doing so, I am creating space to dive into the depths of one passion. I feel its beauty and inspiration wrapped around me. And it still feels like an experiment to me. As I shift my scattershot approach to intentional laser focus, I get a little anxious. Fear ramps up its volume. I quiet it back down. With every reset and new deep dive, I find more continuity and greater flow. This propels me to keep at it; keep exploring, testing, and growing.