Loving the Limits

I subscribe to an inspirational blog that delivers a daily post into my email, first thing every morning. Every morning I read the title, perhaps the first paragraph or two, sometimes the entire post. After a year of following the blog, I know what to expect. It will want me to stretch. I’ll be encouraged to look ahead, to reach a little further, to push myself a little harder, to step out of my comfort zone.

I did that a lot last year, stepped out of my comfort zone. At times with resounding success, but often with spasms of discomfort followed by time wasted and self-recrimination. The biggest lesson I’ve learned in the last year of my life, trust your gut. What is my gut saying? Learn to love your limits.

Immediately that annoyingly energetic and mercilessly optimistic part of my brain weighs in with, What a load of shit! Don’t listen to her, she’dย  be happy if we stayed home every night, reading and writing and crap like that. That’s no kind of life! Tell me you aren’t taking this seriously!

That last bit echoes through me, and I smile. My gut tells me I’m on the right track.

In our world of constant connection, social media, picture feeds and instant messaging, it isn’t enough just to live. You must prove you live, and that you do so with the best of them. Instantly. Constantly. Exhaustively.

My gut knows, that isn’t me. I’m finally listening. Understanding my limits allows me more freedom to explore my curiosities. Nurturing my limits means less time spent chasing experiences that leave me unsatisfied and filled with that vague uneasiness that I am not enough. Loving my limits gives me the opportunity to lift my head at that whisper of movement that sends a frisson of excitement down my spine.person-851456_1920

Listening to my gut means coming to terms with a few things. It means recognizing myself and allowing the grief and relief that come with the realization that I am not all things to everyone. Shedding the machined parts of myself that make me clumsy and heavy. Admitting I’m better one on one than in a group, not taking offense when people step away for need of connection, allowing myself to be happy with what I am and not wasting time wishing to be what I cannot.

When I let go of all that and look up, I realize it’s not a freak flag I’m flying, it’s just my flag, my banner, my colors. They’re beautiful, warm and earthy with just enough vibrancy to attract the like-minded. I imagine the moment a step pauses just outside my wall. I’d look up from my book as they take in my ensign. Feeling relaxed and safe inside my limits, I’m able to meet their gaze.

Does that little quirk at the corner of your mouth feel familiar?

Closing my book, I smile as the secret door opens.




0 thoughts on “Loving the Limits”

  1. Knowing where you thrive the most always helps. It doesn’t do you or anyone else any good to spread yourself too thin even if it seems like it’s what everyone tells you you need to do. But you don’t. You just have to honor your truth and thrive where you’re most comfortable.

  2. I think now about some years in my 20s and wonder how I managed all that — dancing as fast as I could. I feel like my gradually growing need to conserve energy and not let myself be thrown into chaos all the time are generally positive developments — if I can only do one thing, well, then I’d better concentrate on that. The question is, which thing? LOL. There are some games / demands I’ve rejected for decades but I’m enjoying getting rid of more of them! But it’s harder when you have kids. People are soooo judgy.

    1. I’m no longer able to look in awe at people who run from sunup to sundown. I used to, even tried to emulate it for a long time. Now, more than ever, it seems frantic to me.
      I think there are many things we can do well, the trick is choosing that one thing that excites and expands you and that you use to, I don’t know, heal, fill, touch, entertain others.
      The difficult part for me is disappointing others. I don’t want to let people down, but lately, I’m even less interested in being who I’m not.

  3. yeah, my reputation in my last job was as someone who never left the building and I definitely don’t want to be remembered for the amount of work I did, that’s for sure.

  4. Carly, you are a beautiful woman and have a special soul. It is your true “colors” that shine through in your writing and how you connect with others. You have a special gift that is yours alone and it draws me here. Hope your year is off to a great start๐ŸŒˆ๐Ÿ˜˜

    1. Welllllll, it started, ready or not.

      We should hop back over to your blog to talk about the special gifts of bloggers. You have a wonderful, comforting way of pushing my boundaries, in thought and in writing.
      Thank you for unabashedly liking what you see, inside and out, it makes me smile.

          1. Satisfied is an interesting word. I’m always appreciative of what I experience and learn but do drive for more… I think you are the same way. Love your openness and curiosity and you keep wonderful hoursโ˜บ๏ธ๐Ÿ˜˜

          2. Yes, you seem to take everything in with some kind of innate ability to see far beyond what is only barely discernible to many of us. I’m curious, do you get there by knowing your limits or crushing them?

          3. Wow, what an awesome question. I can see you asking it and then walking out of the room for me to ponder. I like exploring and pushing limits in search of the true edge. Beyond that is the abyss. As Nietzsche cautioned, I try not to stare into the abyss…only peeking and realizing it is there.

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