Confidence is 10% hard work 90% delusion.
- Tina Fey
Soooo... my mind has been stirring all-day thinking about something I did. (*Not to worry -- it wasn't illegal or inappropriate, smart*ss.) Side note: do you ever find yourself sitting there, thinking? I mean -- not just "thinking" we obviously "think" all of the time (...well some of us do at least). I mean really take a step back and relish in a moment / experience / achievement /defeat ?
For those who've recently stumbled upon my website and are still getting to know me... well, I used to blog. Yup. This sass-machine used blog about luck, relationships and perseverance... (as if I was a bonafide expert about those topics back then ... which I'm still NOT, but that's beside the point.) Then one day, I stopped. I can't remember exactly what caused this interruption -- heck, there are a few posts I didn't even remember writing. Until today.
A few weeks ago, my 7th grade teacher approached me and asked if I would be interested in sharing my experience as a "blogger" with her students. I would be lying if I said I saw it coming. I couldn't even figure out how she found the f*cking thing in the first place. In fact, at that point, I hadn't blogged (...let alone dig to the deep-dark depths of my "archives") in months.
Needless to say, I was flattered and excited -- but I also didn't know what the f*ck I would say to these kids. I mean obviously the content I pumped out then wasn't (and still isn't) very PG. My sense of humor is pretty ... unrefined. But alas, I accepted the offer and at the very least I figured I would get a kick out of seeing a few of my teachers and my 7th grade classroom in the background of my iPad.
Thankfully, she sent me the questions beforehand so I could prepare. The students compiled questions such as: what inspired my content, why had I chosen that specific title as my blog name, etc. And to be quite honest, I had to re-read some of my posts to refresh my memory.
Initially I was a bit upset and disturbed I couldn't remember writing half of the sh*t on there... but by the same token, I was soooo happy I did. After reading the first few lines of a post I had so appropriately titled: "Crooked Smile." I remembered exactly where I was and how I was feeling when I wrote it. Isn't that f*cking insane? A group of words I had so (glamorously) smashed together were able to bring me back 3 years, in a matter of seconds.
And that's when it all clicked. It didn't matter if my content was perhaps un-relatable for their age group or the fact they may not completely identify with what I was going through when I was writing ... I had to make them understand it was "ok" to feel happy / sad / upset / excited ... as long as they were being honest with themselves.
I know what you're thinking: "What a crock of sh*t, Max!" ... so hear me out. You all know how passionate I am about crafts and any creative pursuits for that matter. I talk about it all the f*cking time. Heck, I've always been a "crafty" person and that's ok! But I clearly remember feeling awkward and slightly embarrassed about my obsession for crafts in my last year of High School and at the beginning of my time in University.
Pom-poms, glitter and construction paper, or at least what some people immediately envision as "traditional crafts" aren't typically seen as being a "serious" or credible source of "achievement" or "success". So for a few years, I was afraid to share my passion with those around me in fear of their negative judgement and so on... Essentially, I didn't want people to perceive what I was doing as a "useless" or "meaningless hobby".
Nowadays, I would argue the exact opposite. In fact, most of my success has come from being "crafty" and "creative". Through my greeting card collections, my DIY projects and creative writing works, I found my "niche". I think being an "entrepreneur" is in and of itself being able to solve problems in a creative fashion. Hell, I brought my sassy greeting cards to my last interview and I got the job!
It was definitely a risk, but a calculated one. I figured my cards would clearly depict my creative abilities, but also showcase my resourcefulness and perseverance. Those were the qualities I wanted to share with those students this morning. I thought it was really important for them to understand that it's perfectly "ok" to be different.
Although you may feel insecure or embarrassed about a hobby, sport, you name it! -- if you are passionate about it, OWN IT because one day that same passion might just give you the opportunity to meet extraordinary people, visit amazing places and discover something completely inconceivable to small-town girl like me.
Trust me when I say I'm the furthest from being fearless, bold and brave -- HOWEVER I do sometimes wish someone would've shared a bit of insight on the importance of both vulnerability and resilience, when I was their age. In today's technologically-infused society, we are often prompted to "follow our dreams", but not many of us are comfortable with sharing and discussing the challenges and hardships one can (AND WILL) go through in a lifetime to achieve those "dreams".
At the end of the day -- I was presented with a surprising opportunity and hope to have inspired one of them and offer the slightest bit of comfort in knowing that it's important to stay true to yourself and what you believe in ... that's what matters. You will meet countless people, see a million different things AND there will no doubt be setbacks and challenges -- we do, however, owe it to ourselves to embrace our vulnerability and kick serious *ss.
Keep that sh*t up, babes!