welcome to the planner girl book club! what’s that, you say?
well, i recently started rereading martha beck’s steering by starlight: the science and magic of finding your destiny, and i invited all my fellow #plannerbabes to do the same and go on this journey of self-(re)discovery with me.
this is a “book club” in the loosest sense of the word. no strict reading schedules or discussion questions. while i do love those, i get plenty of that at my day job!
in fact, you can even participate without reading the book. as my darling friend sarah likes to say, “just live your journey, girl!”
so let’s dive in to the book’s introduction!
here’s what i like so far.
you don’t have to learn your destiny–you already know it; you just have to unlearn the thoughts that blind you to what you know.
there’s something reassuringly doable–reachable–about martha beck’s insistence in the introduction of steering by starlight that we already know our destinies. we don’t have to put our entire lives on hold and go on some epic odyssey through vast deserts and to the ends of civilization to find it.
heck, forget journeys and discoveries, there isn’t even any learning involved! we just have to sift (okay, more like painstakingly dig) through the crap that has it buried just beyond reach. and voila!
i mean, sure, that’s no picnic either but it still makes the whole endeavor less intimidating to me.
so that’s the part i like.
here’s the part i don’t like as much.
whatever we thought should happen to us, whatever we wished would happen, isn’t half so wonderful as what’s meant to happen.
i read this passage and thought back to what my over-achieving high school self, miss most likely to succeed, thought “should” happen to me:
i’ll be a millionaire obviously. probably famous. wear tweed chanel skirt suits (the next anna wintour, i suppose). and i’ll have help: a driver, a maid, a cook, and a personal assistant at the very least.
i cringe just thinking about it! but why? because i was such a materialistic little bastard? nah, i was an ambitious, fabulous little teenager. those dreams got me a 4.6 gpa and into all but one college i applied to (stanford, i see you).
so no, that’s not really it. do i cringe because i’ve failed so miserably? warmer.
who else is having a panic attack?
i mean, if considering driving for uber to supplement my income as an adjunct professor is any indication, i’m closer to being–not employing–help!
but my life is hardly a failure, so perhaps that’s being too hard on myself.
i guess i cringe because i know martha’s statement is true.
my cushy lawyer job got me the skirt suits (sure, they weren’t chanel) and the paychecks (albeit, not millions). and guess what? i wasn’t happy.
i did everything right. i got the grades, the degrees, the license, the job, the office, the assistant. i won the motions and settled the cases. and i was miserable.
when things are simply not meant to be.
if you are a #bossbabe with focus, organization, and drive, then you likely have a specific plan for your life, am i right!? heck, most of us have a detailed itinerary for every hour of every day!
so sorry, martha, i’m not over here trying to RELINQUISH CONTROL! nope, not me. no thank you.
and that’s why this passage stopped me in my tracks.
what i thought should happen, happened. what i wished would happen, happened.
but, it started to become apparent that despite all that planning and hard work, it was not meant to happen.
i had taken a wrong turn somewhere and was on a path that was not meant for me.
in fact, martha’s words remind me of a joseph campbell quote i recently came across on twitter:
“We must be willing to get rid of the life we’ve planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us. The old skin has to be shed before the new one can come.” ⠀
— Creative&Coffee (@CreativeNCoffee) March 12, 2018
shed. relinquish control. be open to new possibilities. who’s with me?
where do you stand?
so i don’t know about you, but i reluctantly, hesitantly, begrudgingly, agree.
where do you stand? how true do martha’s words ring for you?