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What do you want?

tara forthComment

pardon the language, but you guys...this is the best.

What do you want? What a tough question. This is a question I struggle with all the time...struggle in a sense that I don't ask it often enough. Instead, I ask myself questions like what should I do? Or what am I supposed to be doing? And even more, I ask others what I should do... Instead of just doing or saying or thinking what I want.  

Something happens when those words enter my mind...and by something, I mean nothing. Very often, nothing happens. No answers appear, no brilliant thoughts of wisdom fill my mind. Instead, just nothing.

I don't know what I want. I certainly know lots of things I want. But that mysterious being we call 'the what' eludes me. I know what kind of person I want to be. And I know what kind of life I want to have. But that rapid fire answer in any given moment sometimes just doesn't come. 

I was reading up on some articles about stress management on mindtools.com last week, and I discovered that I have some perfectionist tendencies. SAY WHAAAAAT?!?!?! I know you were probably as shocked as I was (not). But really, I was shocked. When I think of a perfectionist, I think of perfect grades, flawless appearance, super clean house, etc. etc. I mean, I like details but I don't have any of the afore mentioned traits.

But I do have very high emotional standards. I really value right and wrong. As someone once told me, I'm 'too black and white'. I don't allow myself much 'grey'.

I'm learning there's some value in letting the grey exist. It can be really exhausting to keep the black quarantined from the white. And Who am I kidding?! People love grey. I love grey! I remember one season I had to go on a grey shopping strike because I had too much of it in my wardrobe.

Really, it's such a versatile color... It can be cool or warm, edgy or neutral. It goes well with lots of other colors and usually makes them pop. Heck, I even use grey in my FWD branding.

So why am I so afraid to embrace it as a way of thought (embrace was not the word...incorporate, maybe? Just give it a chance...yeah, baby steps here)? It's probably our old friend fear.

I imagine fear as that real clingy guy that is nice but really all wrong for you and sort of has bad breath, but you can't ever say anything... He's the guy that you have to sort of 'break up' with over and over even though you're not a thing....

He never really gets the hint and every couple of months he texts you and is like, 'oh hey it's been a while. Man I miss your face. Let's catch up.' And who wouldn't melt at a compliment like that... So we go out with him and we have an awkward meal that leaves us feeling bad about ourselves or just weirded out in general, and toward the end of the meal, he thinks things are going well, and he pops the question, 'so what do you want?' 

Aaaaaah!!!! Nooooooo. The question!!! 

Well, sometimes maybe it's enough to know what you don't want. And one thing's for sure: I don't want to date fear. 

Yes, life is uncertain. Yes, it may be scary sometimes. Yes, it may feel terrible. Awful. Painful. The. Worst. Thing. Ever. But it's not. It's not the worst thing ever. It just is.

So, I'm going to embrace the grey, enjoy the ride, and break up with fear. Again. 

Oh, and maybe also every time I start to get ready for a date with fear, I'll imagine Ryan Gosling swooping in and punching him in the face and turning to me to say, 'Tara, WHAT DO YOU WANT?'

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swoon.