Updated: Mar 11, 2019
I live my life, professionally and personally, inspiring, encouraging, and leading others to be the very best they can be, to reach their fullest potential, and to help others along the way to do the same, whatever that “same” may uniquely look like. Not only do I live it, I BELIEVE deeply, quite passionately, in the importance of living a life “all in,” “wholeheartedly” that is always being in the present with those we love and care about, including ourselves.
It sounds so easy, but we all know it just isn’t. Things, all kinds of just stuff, get in the way to prevent us from accomplishing the goals we set for ourselves. What we honestly can’t control, we need to let go of. But there definitely are things within our control and standing in the way, right? I preach every day, live and be fearless! Do not let anyone else be in charge of your destiny! Make your own decisions as you are the one living your unique life, the one you have been created to live. It almost goes without saying, this advice comes from the lessons I have learned over a professional life spanning almost 4 decades. And, the personal life is never divided from the professional one as badly as we might want to sometimes.
Why this blog topic, why now, and why does it matter? I’m going to use myself as an example, and I hope you will give me your feedback on if I am able to pull it together to show relevance and meaning?
There is no doubt that I believe in lifelong learning having been in a classroom pursuing formal degrees over a time span of at least 20+ years. Now as a university administrator, and professor, I am immersed in continual learning. My first lengthy career was within the airline industry and an environment of learning that was priceless at every practical level; it was an education that could never be bought, it had to be fully lived. That profound experience is very much a part of who I have developed to be professionally and personally.
I ultimately realized about 10 years ago that I needed more creative fulfillment, though. As a faithful person, I found when I happened upon my hobby of photography, it wasn’t an accident. I was being led to find my inner, creative self (we all have one), but at a pace that was so slow, so much an evolution, that I had no real idea what was happening. I began to see that while I knew absolutely nothing about the art, it was like a mental sanctuary, peaceful albeit energizing in a deeply personal way that I had never experienced before. It was just me, competing with me, to improve. It was okay that I knew nothing, I thought, because it was only my hobby. It was a while before I figured out that living all in didn’t really have any boundaries. You either are, or you aren’t. Oh yes, we’re none of us perfect; I’m certainly not. I see how I fall short of this desired state to live and love, wholeheartedly I’m calling all in, every single day. But I couldn’t want to grow and develop in only one part of my life; it had to be all parts and that included the hobby space, too.
Keenly aware of my lack of confidence, and ability, I’m pretty sure I did what most do. I bought plenty of equipment, took lots of workshops, and practiced photography skills every chance I got. There was lots of reading and studying great artists, both from throughout many decades as well as current day artists as well. I sought out the experts, the ones who love their craft seeking to improve every day, competing with themselves to get close to their level of greatness, and those who loved their craft enough to share it with me the one who knew nothing, but one who sure wanted to learn! At some point, I was able to see the storytelling that would come from the images that would more or less compel me to capture them. Looking at my own work, seeking to understand it, to see what my own lens can say more powerfully than any words I might find to say, was one of those life changing “ah ha!” moments for me. What was being written on my heart was also written on the images.
Throughout this journey I’ve found the need to face lots of fears if I wanted to expand creative boundaries. For instance, I feared emotion that could be seen in the faces of those in my images, so for a very long time, there were no people in mine. Yep, I knew this giant had to be faced and so I took it on with the help of others who had been at the same place at some point. Editing, as strange as that may seem, was a huge fear, too, and now is no longer an issue for me. It doesn’t mean I’ve mastered it. No, it means I no longer have those fears.
I came to realize that as I faced each fear, I became stronger and more confident in facing the next one. Not only stronger in the hobby area, but also in the other aspects of my life. If I was going to preach to be fearless, I sure better be living by that same philosophy with my own action at the same time.
Now I am facing the fear of creating this blog! Living fearlessly requires Action with NO Fears and NO Regrets! And Goals:
Blog centered around topics of leadership, wholehearted living / relationships, lifelong learning, and personal development.
Meaningful content followers will love!
Narrative, images, topics that are genuine, real, practical and impactful.
Connection to better quality of life, self-awareness, and self-love.
I’m asking for your feedback along the way and hope you will share with me ideas of how I might continue to improve this blog with the overall purpose of engaging with others who will be genuine, and yes, Dare to Be You!
Welcome to the beginning of ReidWithSandra!