“I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself.” ~Oriah Mountain Dreamer
This week I faced a tricky situation. It became clear to me this week that I don’t have time to nurture my own creative projects and collaborations and continue this project I’ve been working on for someone else. I had to choose, and I chose to follow what interests me most rather than what pays.
To be clear, there is nothing wrong with this other project. The people are kind, the work is interesting, and I was appreciated for my talents and skills (perhaps a little too much!) It just didn’t interest me as much as I had hoped it would at the outset, and at this point in my life, which may very well be roughly the midpoint of my life, I am turning my attention toward the projects that give me the greatest joy—my writing, my visual artwork, and my storytelling in many different forms. Yes, the extra contract money was nice to have, but I earned it at the expense of the creative work that really makes my heart sing. And so, I’ll have to adjust other plans in my life to accommodate the shift in income, at least temporarily.
The decision sounds so much easier than it actually is. I knew the person I was working for would be disappointed, and it’s hard for me to live with the idea of disappointing someone else to be true to myself. I’ll also have to adjust some of my personal financials. The quote from Oriah Mountain Dreamer helped, and know in my gut that it’s the right decision. I had to pay attention to what makes me happiest, and that rests in my own creative work.
We have so little time really, no matter how long life is, and it’s the one resource we just can’t get back. Once we spend time it’s gone forever. We have to spend it where it matters most to us.