Why is Your True Calling So Hard to Hear?
In the last few blogs, we’ve investigated how playing a limiting role can hold you back from shining as your authentic self. Your true calling is often hard to hear because it conflicts with who you think you are.
In “The Wizard of Oz,” Dorothy described herself as “small and meek.” Because of that belief, she didn’t realize she had the power to go home all along after landing in colorful Oz.
Similarly Luke was already a “Skywalker” in the original “Star Wars” movie, but he didn’t know he could use the force yet because he was too busy playing the role of “the dutiful nephew.” He couldn’t see beyond the chores he did as a handyman on his uncle’s farm every day.
My call to sing came when I was four years old, but I didn’t answer it for 24 years! It was muffled by others’ expectations of me. I was always “the smart girl.” Playing music made no sense given the life I was supposed to lead. Everyone pushed me to excel in academics so, of course, I became a professor. If I hadn’t been so frustrated, I would’ve never ditched academics for an uncertain future.
Odds are you’re also wearing a constricting label that keeps you from expanding into your true self. To hear the call, you need to bring this role out into the light and break the thought and behavior patterns that go with it. That means going into the unknown.
Dorothy had to be yanked out of black and white Kansas to drop the “small and meek” label and develop her true potential. Suddenly she found herself walking down a Yellow Brick Road where scarecrows talked, apple trees threw apples, and Tin Men rusted from crying. This dramatic change in scenery was necessary for her evolution from a little girl to the most powerful being in Oz.
The moment Luke left his planet he was plunged into a raging war full of Emperial troops, Wookies, a beautiful princess, and some creep called “Darth Vader.” He would’ve never learned to use the force and become a Jedi knight if it hadn’t been necessary for his survival in this new world.
It wasn’t until after I left academics that I discovered my true gifts as a singer-songwriter. I had no idea what I was doing at first; I just made it up as I went along. But that’s the whole point. To discover who you truly are, you need to leave what’s familiar behind and go into the unknown. Because the rules in this new “place” are different, your old habits and limited ways of thinking don’t work so well. You’re forced to develop new skills, rely on your gut, and find like-minded people and mentors to help you. You end up discovering your best self by navigating through this new territory.
So… how do you answer your true calling and go into the unknown? By trying something new that makes your heart sing, or picking up an old passion. Take a painting class, call an old friend, rewrite your resume to match the job you really want, or sing in the shower because you loved singing as a child. Watch the old labels melt away as you pursue what brings you joy.
For me, it was dusting off my bike, filling the tires with air, and riding around my neighborhood. It freed my mind up to write this blog. What about you? What simple thing can you do TODAY to make yourself happy? Not sure? Watch this fun music video to learn how to tear off false labels and love your life: You’re an Original