abundance · aspiration · community · fear · fun · synchronicity · truth · trying

In case you weren’t sure, I was the one dancing.

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Last night, I got an email reply to my inquiry about volunteering for a day-long community social action project in the Fall. The
call was for artists of all types, and if I’m anything, I am an artist of all
types!
The email came back: YES! We’d love to have you; here are
some painting projects: Create a mural; touch-up-paint a building; paint a wall; help kids decorate bags for food that will be donated.
If you read my blog, Men at Work, about circumstances that have come to
fruition since being put in my “G-d box,” you may remember (as I do, since it’s
now tacked to my fridge) that in that box was a list of things I wanted to do,
accomplish, or participate in. The second on the list, just after “being in a band,” is painting a mural.
At the time I was writing my blog about it, the mural didn’t
seem so important anymore. In fact, I reflected, “Sure that’d still be totally
rad!”
but that doing a mural doesn’t feel as
prioritized as some of the other items on the list, like finding a creative job
I enjoy, or being in a musical.
And yet. Here’s an opportunity I would never have thought
would come to be an opportunity!
The email said the mural would be in collaboration, and
there’s more info that I’d gather from the committee members, so I wouldn’t be
doing this in isolation at all.
However, I notice, too, that my typical/habitual reaction is to say, “I’m not an artist on that scale or level, so I’ll take the job of helping the
kids decorate lunch bags.”
I know that’s my automatic response. I know that’s my fear
response. But, I also know that there’s validity in saying, I’ve never done
this before, and I would love to help, but I’d also need help.
And, so, that’s likely what I’ll say. I’ll be honest with
where my talents are, but also where my aspiration is. I mean, if I never, ever
step out of what my comfort zone is, how will I ever know what I am capable of,
hm?
That doesn’t mean taking risks at the detriment of a
community project just to say, “Of course I can do it.” It’s detrimental to me (and to them) if I take steps that are developmentally inappropriate out of fear or pride. That doesn’t mean not to stretch out of my comfort zone (which, FYI participating a mural at all is!!), but it does mean that I start with a 5 mile hike, not 10.

This all feels very parallel to the job of the lead role in the play I was offered. I know it’s a stretch of my talents. I know I’ve never done it before, but unlike the play, the mural is something I’d really love to do. I appreciate the organization, their mission, and think it would be a lot of fun.

More will be revealed. I will let them know my truth, and be willing to say, “I
don’t know if I can take the lead on this project, but I would love to be ‘second in command’ or co-chair of it — truly involved in its creation and completion.”
Instead of playing it safe with the colored bags (something I know I can land easily, have fun with but not be learning much), I think the way to “dare greatly” here is
to offer to help out on the mural however I can, and learn a whole lot on the
way. Then maybe next time, I can confidently say Yes to taking the lead.
Here’s to being willing to cross more items off that list! (And here’s to my “daring greatly” in the first place by writing to them that I wanted to be involved at all.) 

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