Life is Like a Handful of Magic Beans

Magic Beans:

Everyone else thinks they’re crap and nothing happens until you plant them!

I am the queen, nay empress, of handfuls of magic beans:

  • hey, look at these beans, aren’t they cool? Not really. Oh. ~~~~Garbage
  • hey, look at these beans, what should I do with these beans? You should set those beans aside and concentrate on this solidly boring thing over here. Oh. ~~~~Garbage.
  • hey, look at these beans, should we move forward with these? Yes, and I shall take all the credit. Oh~~~~shit…those were my beans!
  • hey, look at these beans… They’re stupid. Oh. ~~~~Garbage.

Are you like me, always asking other people what they think about your magic beans, or asking them what you should do with your magic beans? Or maybe you’re just holding onto your magic beans–no one gets to see them! Including you!

Well. Stop it. Now. I mean it.

And when I tell you to stop it, I’m actually telling myself to stop it. It’s just easier to tell you to stop. And you probably need to hear it too.

To be fair, magic beans make other people nervous–people around you who don’t know what the heck to do with their own magic beans, let alone want to hear about yours.

Become comfortable with your MBs. If you’re not sure about ’em, who will be? Not until you’re comfortable with them yourself, and you’ve found a spot to grow them, and you’ve tended them for a while and not, you know, let them whither and die because you were too busy…

Clearly, magic beans are ideas–not just any ideas, not those ideas you freely scatter all over and if someone thinks it stinks, so be it. Maybe it does. Maybe it doesn’t. Magic Beans are not those, they are the ideas that wake you up at night, those ideas you can’t shake. The big ideas. The ideas that if someone says stinks, you’ll be crushed. Yeah, those ideas.

Again, what to do, what to do. Get an idea buddy, not a “yes” woman, but someone who is there to help you flesh out the idea, not to squash, but maybe to question and hold space for your accountability–its a reciprocal relationship, you’d be there for them in the same capacity. Put it on your calendar, bi-weekly, or monthly meetings specific to ideas (magic beans ;)), hold space for incubation and idea formation, and have faith in yourself.

Here’s to MBBs: may you find one and may you be one.

If you’re willing to share, I’d love to be an honorary MBB, tell us your big idea! Amy

 

 

Guilty Pleasures

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Why do we associate guilt with pleasure? And why do we feel guilty for something that is fun and easy and non-intellectual? Why can’t we just enjoy something?
I was at a meeting and we were talking about our favorite authors and someone said, well, my guilty pleasure is so and so, she’s fun and easy to read and the books make me laugh.She rationalized for everyone else why her favorite author wasn’t Proust or Dostoyevsky. To be fair I work for a large library system so, we know books. And apparently snobbery, because heaven forbid you like someone who’s a page turner!

But I felt for her for some reason (and frankly the person she considered a guilty pleasure most people would just consider a good read) and since many of the authors I enjoy might be considered…not classics, I too went with a “guilty pleasure” and spoke of my love of romance, queue the gasping, although no one did because we’re all so good at “no judgment” judgment.That sounded judgmental!

I saw her guilty pleasure and upped the stakes to some pretty sexy romance! Ha! Take that! But I still called it my “guilty pleasure.” Which got me thinking about how often we deny our pleasures, wants, and needs. Or we call them Guilty Pleasures, owning up to our sin(s): see, I know it’s not “good” for me and I’m owning up to it. Mea Culpa.
Why can’t it simply be a pleasure? Why the guilt?

Just we’re clear: If you’re pleasure is hurtful to others or harmful to yourself, that’s a different story. I’m speaking about the littler things–the things that don’t interfere with our day to day or anyone’s lives.
I enjoy this. Fun books are FUN. Fun TV is FUN. Fun food is FUN. And, as we know, fun is good. Pleasure is good. It’s okay to want to read a fun book, watch a fun show, or eat fun food, if you enjoy it, then enjoy it–don’t apologize for your pleasure.
What do you enjoy that you’ve always thought of as a guilty pleasure?

What Do You Want? Or, How Not to Have Ungreat Expectations

expectations, getting what you want, declaring your goals

You are never going to get what you don’t really know you want. Declare your Expectations

I’m thinking about expectations. Other people’s for me, mine for other people and mine for myself.

Sometimes I think I’ve made my expectations clear, only to be disappointed–is my disappointment someone else’s fault or my failure of clarity around my expectations? Yeah. The latter. Dang.

No one can meet meet our expectations if we’re not clear about what they are.
We think we’re telling people what we want when in reality we’re only hinting, or worse yet, expecting them to just know.

What do you mean, you don’t have ESP?

Get clear–state what you need/want. And make sure you’re clear on others’ expectations.

All of these have been challenging for me, but the biggest was figuring out my own expectations for myself. Maybe we have a nebulous idea floating around and maybe there’s a touch of guilt and/or shame attached to it because somehow we aren’t doing/being what we VAGUELY think we should!

We do the same darn thing to ourselves that we do to other people, hint at what we want or think the Universe will tell us what to do and or be.

doobee, doobee, do…

You are never going to get what you don’t really know you want. Ever.

I started the “earning dollars” phase of my life with no direction. None. Oh, I had a thought that it didn’t matter what I did, because I was going to be discovered!!!!!

I am not even kidding.

Just me tra-la-la-ing waitressing or bartending and SOMEONE would see me and offer me SOMETHING. Was I working toward this nebulous dream of vague outcomes? HOW COULD I? Okay, I spent a good chunk of my school life on stage, so I came by the nebulous dream honestly and after I was out of school I did audition exactly once for something–didn’t get it and that was it.

Really? Really.

But I still held fast to my “dream.” And I still thought something would happen–like some sad fairytale princess waiting for someone else to save her.

I wrote a little bit, had no set genre, or time frame, didn’t take any classes (read a few writing books)–and even submitted a couple things (years and years apart) got two lovely rejection letters, (they really were lovely with good advice) and both times I stopped writing. Instead of listening to the advice and persevering, I stopped… There was always being DISCOVERED…

I don’t know why I expected success when I’d barely worked at it. But then again, how do you work at something when you’re not sure of the outcome you want? Sheesh.

It wasn’t until much later that I realized another aspect of this: if I had no hard core attachment to a specific outcome, I couldn’t really try for it–and if I couldn’t really try, well, I couldn’t really fail.

No investment equals no (horrible) return.

So, no specific expectations for myself meant never letting myself down. Except, I always felt as if I weren’t living up to something, soooo, I was, in fact, letting myself down. Icky, icky circle.

Am I set with this now, golden with the whole expectations? Nope! Still working on it–but now I’m not kidding myself. I’m super happy I worked through The Desire Map and know that it’s the feeling we want, which doesn’t mean I don’t need/want goals, I do.

Now, I’ll start with how I want to feel, from there I can build my expectations for myself and then commit to them. And then build my goals accordingly.

Unless I get discovered first.

I kid.

Have you set your own “great” expectations? How about for folks around you? Let me know!