"In the race toward measuring up, we often don't realize we're being fueled by something harmful." Lara Casey in Make It Happen
I'm slow, but I'm getting it. This season I'm in has been, in large part, about letting go of the harmful things that have been fueling my activities. I wrote about it recently and the difference between operating out of Duty and flowing from Delight.
I don't know that even a month ago I would have said that operating out of duty was "harmful" because it did, after all, get the job done. But now I'm letting this quote sink in…and yes, yes, duty as a constant fuel source is harmful.
It's harmful to my body because if it's my duty, then I can't rest until my duty is done.
It's harmful to my emotions because duty never ever gives back and is never satisfied.
It's harmful to relationships because it sends the message that I'm doing this because I have to. It's my duty. Or if I don't see it as "my duty" then I send the message that what you need isn't important to me.
It's harmful to my spirit because I was never designed to run on duty. I'm trying to come up with an apt metaphor for types of fuel and different engines, but honestly what is coming to me is that it's like putting dirt in my Ferrari and expecting it to win the race.
And then there's the other part to this duty thing and that is measuring up.
That's such an abstract concept. What have I been trying to measure up to?
When I look at the lines that I've drawn on the wall of my mind, saying "If I can just reach this, then…" But what's interesting about all of those lines is that, well, there are a lot of them. Or a lot of erasures because as soon as I start to get close and think that rest is about to be at hand, I move the line somewhere else because I've learned that the measuring up line that I thought was at the right place wasn't quite it. Or I allow someone else to move the line.
I now call these lines "false standards."
False standards are arbitrary. It's ok to set goals, but when goals become standards to adhere to they become harmful.
I don't have any answers in this post. Just musings and a lot of thinking out loud. I'm on a journey of letting go and learning what new things I need to lay hold of in this season of outrageous personal growth that's taking me out onto the open seas and into the Untethered Life.
What about you? Where are you on the journey from operating out of Duty and flowing from Delight? What measuring lines are you ready to ditch?
I'd love to hear from you!
I am passionate about helping people to become all they are created to be, leaving behind old patterns of thinking, of eating, of feeling, to embrace the life they are meant to live. If you’d like me to walk with you on this journey, contact me at email@example.com and let’s discuss a plan that works best for you.