I Am An Amateur

On my morning commute I was surprised to see a bit of snow dusting the far off hills - but thought it was too far off to get a close look. 
Then I was excited when I started to glimpse a dusting along the road. Hooray! I thought - my first snow of the season! 
Then the snow got heavier - the tree branches bent under the weight. I rounded a corner and found a herd of cattle in the road staring around.... they appeared quite confused and as if they were looking for the cowboys to come herd them down to lower lands and green fall grass.
 And then the snow got heavier still.  A snow plow passed going the other direction. I wished I was going the other direction. My speed reduced to 30mph I crept along in 4wd for mile after mile.

 I rounded a bend and the snow was gone... as if a line had been drawn that the snow dare not pass.
I read "Turning Pro" by Steven Pressfield yesterday. Ouch. That book hit home.  I pondered on it. Chewed on the concepts and thoughts. I rolled it around and around and around. Then I concluded - according to Pressfield's definition I am an amateur in many areas.

This definition has nothing to do with skill, accomplishment, goals, ability, or anything else other than a state of mind and the resulting natural flow from that state of mind.

An amateur faces challenges (real or imagined) in their quest to achieve X and they become derailed, unfocused, and diverted. A professional may experience the same exact challenges but, due to their state of mind, continue on diligently working away to achieve X regardless of outer or inner reasons to stop.

An amateur in any field procrastinates, finds excuses, creates alternative work... anything to keep from doing and achieving what they deep down feel drawn to do.

A pro just does the work. The ugly work, the dirty work, the unmarketable work... they keep honing and developing what they are drawn to do regardless of if anyone else in the world feels their work is valuable or important.

As someone who has 1001 interests I have to ask myself - where am I just doing busy work and where am I really drawn?

Do I have so many interests simply because I'm very successful at running away from becoming a pro at the areas I'm really passionate about?  I'm making myself too busy doing B-Z that I can only dabble with A - even though A is, if I'm honest, my most passionate area?

Do I really want to speak multiple languages (or run an adventure race, or compete in Mt. Trail, or write a book, or learn pottery, or create art, or or or)? I certainly do not have the habits a pro would utilize to do any of these things.

Am I hiding from the professional effort needed to accomplish these things OR am I wasting time playing with this and that on a surface level to avoid digging down into the area(s) I should be truly focused upon?

The onion layers are many.

Make The Most Of It

I'm in the city for training this weekend.

Outside the hotel cars rush by and people are busy doing city living things.  A bit discombobulating.

But if I lay on the hotel floor just so... and open the curtains just a bit. ... I look out on this lovely juniper.

So thankful for trees.

This and that

Isn't this lady just beautiful? I find them now and again - such an oddity and yet so perfectly formed as is all of creation. She was hanging out under our deck railing  and would turn her head just so whenever I brought the camera close.

Some folks in my town have been hit with life changing events in the last few weeks.

One man, who frequents my work, fell off his truck hitting his head on the pavement. He has a large family and a new baby. An avid outdoorsman and hard worker from what I've been told... he also now no longer has the frontal lobe of his brain. I'm not sure what that means for him... I've been told the frontal lobe controls movement of arms, legs, and such... but does not greatly affect mental function. I can only imagine that if I were his wife I would be so grateful my husband was still with me.

One lady, a single mom with a 3 year old little blond girl and a job as a waitress, was in a car accident. She is now paralyzed with no use of her arms or legs. I do not know what her future will hold but I can only imagine that if I were her daughter I would be so grateful that my mom was still with me.

Two families, including one husband/wife in their 60's/70's,  in one of the poorest neighborhoods of our town found their homes up in flames after somebodies illegal burn barrel fire sent sparks into the overgrown grasses. The homes and buildings are burned to the ground leaving charred remains and smoke damaged homes standing on either side. The people are poor... they were burning insulation off of copper wire so that it could be sold for a higher price. If I were them I would just be so grateful that nobody died.

I read a blog post a few days ago... about being kind to others as everyone has some kind of heartache. The post was touching... the comment section was moving - comment after comment of people sharing their heartache.

Hearing the things that my neighbors, friends, and strangers are going through makes the daily inconveniences... the minor annoyances.... the little challenges of life all so insignificant.

These events remind me to be grateful, truly grateful, for life.

And in the depths of the biggest challenges... the life changing challenges... I hope all are given grace and kindness and love from those around them. That they might find the pieces of positive in the midst of the difficulty - rays of hope to be grateful for.

Love Always

There's nothing quite like it....

Love Always

Love Deeply

Love Fully

Love Completely

Love Regardless

Love Forever

Love Yourself

Love Others

Love Now