Tag Archives: Talent

Perfect is Boring

I have probably watched more television this last year than I have the rest of my life put together. Ironic seeing as I don’t actually own a TV, but thanks to Netflix and Hulu I’ve been able to catch up on entire TV series.

Watching one series at a time works well for me. I get disconnected waiting week to week to watch the next episode of a show and am rarely free when an episode airs on TV, so Netflix and Hulu are wonderful.

I’ve always been a multi-tasker. Usually when I watch TV I’m running on the treadmill, washing dishes, painting, or folding laundry. I set my laptop up in the corner and work and relax at the same time. Lately, I’ve been on a bit of a reality TV kick. I never got into American Idol but, for some reason, I love the X Factor. The most fascinating thing about competitive reality shows is watching gifted contestants interact with each other. So many start out strong and full of confidence. They know they have talent. They are used to being on top— then they meet the competition. Singing, modeling, dancing- it doesn’t seem to matter. Some of the strongest contestants start to crumble, not because they are any less talented, but because they start looking around at everyone else instead of looking ahead.

Dr. Michael Easley once said, “Comparison is the kiss of death of gratitude. When you start comparing your lot in life to somebody else’s you stop being thankful for what God has given you. Comparison will stop gratitude every time.” It seems so innocent to compare, but it can be so deadly. When contestants start to compare themselves, you can often see the confidence get sucked out of their eyes. They often start to lose their nerve and lose the special something that made them so good to begin with.

We are a society plagued not only with the desire to compete; but also the tendency to compare. Which kid is cuter? Whose bike is better? Who is the more talented singer, actor, writer, photographer the list is endless. Somewhere in the middle of it all, the idea that different people have different styles has gotten lost. One particular style isn’t necessarily better than another style; it’s just different. If everyone looked the same, sounded the same, or even had the same style of painting how boring would that be. Model Tyra Banks likes to say, “Perfect is boring, human is beautiful.”

Being human means being an individual and liking a unique combinations of colors, foods, clothing, and even hobbies. It also means that not everyone will agree with you all of the time, because you have different thoughts and feelings. It means you are an original and not to be compared to anyone else.

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Putting the World on Hold

Some weeks my mind goes blank when it comes to writing. It’s a rare occasion because I love to write so much that I usually blog about once a week, journal, then of course there is the newspaper which often comes out to two to three stories plus a weekly editorial, and I recently started writing a monthly article for Rejoice Always a magazine in Northern Ireland. I love to write so much that I think I would write even if no one ever read a single word. Although, it is much more rewarding when people do actually do read it.

Writing helps me process and connect with experiences and people, some of whom I’ve never even met. It makes me slow down and truly experience an event, such as a hike through the woods, or capture a moment like listening to the sound of rain hit the roof as I fall asleep.

When I write, it’s as if life is put on pause just for a second, and I get to wander through the enchanting world of words picking out that perfect phrase to describe a feeling. I stop and taste the wind, feel the touch of spring day slowly awakening, revisit a memory, a sound, or an elusive moment of pure contentment. I know I can’t stay in that safe place forever, but writing helps me hold on to it just a little bit longer. The world slowly starts to make sense to my confused little head.

It seems to be true that the more you know the more you know you don’t know. Sometimes that feeling can be depressing. When I graduated from college I felt like I had less answers and more questions then when I started not only about life and my area of study but about myself. Writing helps the world make a little more sense even if it is only for a moment. But, it is not only my little world. There are times when I’ve written about something and someone will say, “that’s it. That is exactly how I feel.” Two worlds connect, and that is a beautiful thing. A while back I stumbled upon the blog Everyday-isa and starting following it. I look forward to each new post because they are so deep and full of feeling. I always seem to walk away from her words feeling refreshed, challenged, and inspired.

In college, one of my communication teachers referred to certain experiences as an apocalypse which, in old English, refers to something being uncovered or revealed. I think this idea of apocalypse is why most passionate artists work seeking to uncover a truth or a feeling, something almost other worldly, a connection with the soul. It is a God-given piece of us that makes us human—the desire for something more than this world, the hope of something almost magical that causes someone to forget where they are and imagine so much more. But, in the end, this feeling allows us to fully enjoy this life living each day with wonder and feeling.

Some people paint others sing. Some people sculpt, run, dance, and create films that make other people cry. Whatever it is that makes you feel alive, do it. Find beauty and cultivate it. Find your talent and grow it even when that means failing at times and having days when you have no idea what to write about.

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