I came across some signs last night while helping a friend celebrate her 30th birthday. Whether mine or not, birthdays ask of me to contemplate the journey thus far, whether that’s mine or the one I have had with a friend or family member. The complexity of life is such a challenge, but sometimes, you come in touch with things that remind you that everything will work out as long as you stay engaged.
Earlier that day, Anchorage held its annual TEDx Conference, where people are invited to do Ted Talks around a theme, typically Alaskan issues. This year’s event was available via webcast so I got to watch it from home. There were talks about localvorism for Alaska, sustainability, culture, food, etc. The idea behind this year’s TEDx was about how Alaska can build capacity as a community, but also about how we as individuals can thrive in our direction.
I wanted to give a big shout out to this one speaker in particular, Lorena Knapp; her message was about living in the yellow. Not only did she know how to be a dynamic public speaker, I thought her message resonated more than any other.
She spoke about how we should practice the uncomfortable until it becomes comfortable, and then embrace the next thing that makes us uncomfortable. While her stories gave us the how and why she lives in the yellow, she challenged us to consider the barometer of our bellies.
When you are nervous, and you get a bit nauseous, that is your barometer telling you that you’re uncomfortable, and when that feeling comes about, you should embrace the person or thing that is causing it to speak. Instead of giving half truths to the person in the room that you really want to be honest with, just be honest. Instead of not changing careers and being that person that says about life, “I work too hard”, do what it takes to get that other job. Instead of avoiding the race out of fear of being last, push yourself to set a reasonable goal that does get you out there.
You should go towards the uncomfortable rather than turn away. According to Knapp, this is how a good life can become a great life and she believes that a lot of people have good lives, but many of us live safely instead of challenging ourselves. We hide due to our misinterpretation of fear because the only fear we should be cautious of is the kind that we have when we are in real danger. Then, it’s o.k. to protect ourselves, but all other fear is really just us feeling uncomfortable. That kind of fear is what makes us grow and be better, but only if we go towards it. Pretty good advice if you ask me.
To sum it up, here is what I got out of yesterday:
Be Nice or Leave
Take the Road Less Traveled
Pay Attention to the Barometer in Your Belly and Live in the Yellow
I don’t know if the above four statements include everything for aiding us through life, but it’s pretty darn close.
Happy Spring everyone! Thanks for stopping by!