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A conversation is recounted in the book # Shantaram  in which the character, Khaderbhai, says: “There is no such thing as believing in #G...

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Saturday, 30 April 2016

MY GREATEST FEAR

It's 4am and I'm writing this post in response to a minor existential melt-down I'm having. After listening yesterday to a wonderful and inspiring interview of my friend and teacher, Dr Roy Whitten (@WhittenDR), I was indirectly reminded of my greatest fear, which is that I  might never reach my fullest potential because I'm not sure what my fullest potential is.

I'm not even sure that I know why it's a fear. I'm not sure if it's the part of me that thinks I owe it to the world to deliver the best of me that there is, or whether it's just that I owe that to myself. I hope it's the latter. If I have to be beholden to anybody, I would rather it were just to me than to the world. The burden is similar, but at least the accountability is only to one person and not to 7 billion.

My early morning musings have left me wondering if there's still a piece of the puzzle of my life missing.  The only thing I do feel sure about is that, if I'm still here, there's more to come and more to do. In the sure knowledge that I haven't yet peaked, but have more to offer the world, or perhaps the Universe, or maybe just myself, there is a part of me which keeps on plumbing the depths of my creative space in search of the bigger piece.

And that's where the excitement is, not just for me but for each and every one of us: If you can accept that you have more to offer and to do by virtue of the simple fact that you are still here, or if you don't like that, then if you accept that there is more you could do with your life given that you still have time on earth, the opportunity awaits to discover what that bigger or missing piece really is. 

I don't necessarily think I'm going to invent the next big successor to the iPhone (or that I even want to do that), but what I am unwilling to accept is that my life is as good and complete as it's ever going to be. 

What I know for sure is that there is always going to be a part of me that looks for better ways of doing things, better ways of being in the world, bigger pieces to apply in my daily life, opportunities to share the lessons I have learned and more to offer to myself and others. 

I am also painfully aware of when I go off track and lapse into what I call stagnation mode, which is that place where we stop creating and even tend towards self-sabotage. Every one of us has the ability to slump into stagnation mode, and perhaps that's the pressure valve which has to pop every now and again so that we don't burn ourselves out with effort. However, stagnation mode also has the potential to become too comfortable, in which case we stay right in it, stagnating and eventually becoming fetid. The challenge is to recognize when we are in stagnation mode, decide how long we are willing to lurk in that muck and be purposeful about hauling ourselves out and getting back on the road.

So the learning piece here is that we all have more to offer, but not necessarily in terms of physical effort, additional time or money. In my case I am pretty much at full stretch with all of those. What we do have to offer, however, is the very essence of who we are in our most loving, humane and authentic states and the creative thought with which we have all been blessed. If we cannot give those to their absolute fullness (however they may look), then we will not have reached our fullest potential.

Thanks for listening. And thank you, Roy Whitten, as ever for your wonderful insights.

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