Why such a big fuss?
Have you ever worked yourself into a tizzy over some project or event or trip… only to reflect back and wonder, “Why was that such a big deal?”
I remember arguments between my mom and stepfather when I was ten years old. They fought over problems so earth-shattering that none of the three of us would even remember. Yet the vitriolic words burned like a blow torch on gasoline (more likely a flame thrower fueled by hairspray – I can still smell mom’s Aqua Net).
The first time I actually cooked a meal by myself (for me it was boiling a pack of ramen noodles when I was 18) felt like sooo much work. I stared at the pot, waiting for the water to bubble so I could drop in the hunk of dried squiggles at precisely the right time. Then I gazed back and forth from my analog watch to the still hardened hunk, counting 3 minutes (not more, not less… because I was a rule follower), and trying to decide if it was okay to dump out some of the water before I mixed in the flavor packet so it would have a stronger taste and I wouldn’t have to drink so much “soup.”
Or maybe you remember panicking about a term paper that was due the next day. How much time was wasted dreading the assignment before you ever set down to start? How many times did you complain to others about this project? How much caffeine got consumed before it was ultimately finished? How little sleep did you get? And of what value was that term paper when you look back today?
The thing is, our life is only as big as we make it.
And the “big thing” can be really small yet still feel like a boulder of an obstacle.
As I get ready for my flute performances in Holland I have scheduled some “low pressure” trial gigs. When we were out in Vegas last week, I corralled my husband into listening to me play through my repertoire in one of the seminar classrooms. Clearly the world was not going to stop rotating, but I was nervous about even asking him. My husband (…who has heard me practicing at home for the last six months).
And then I was nervous about how to start. And whether it was okay to move around a little bit while I played a jazzy tune. And if how I moved would look stupid. And if I should close my eyes when it got to that “soft, sweet spot” at the end of the second movement of the classical piece. And what to do when something unexpected fell apart.
And then… then I was disappointed when it was over.
It seemed like there ought to have been more.
More of what?
So this weekend I’m demo-ing my tunes in front of three highly skilled musician friends. Don’t believe for one moment that doesn’t scare the crap out of me.
And then I’m providing background music at a local church service right about the time you’re reading this.
And you know what?
I’m guessing that at the end of each of those performances I’m going to look back and wonder, “Why all the big fuss?”
And I’m going to remind myself that all the hoopla is because I’m working toward a bigger goal.
You can do the same.
But I encourage you to work up to it… whatever the it is.
Revisit your list of New Year’s resolutions and pull out the Big Baddie. Then figure out one step you could take today to get yourself a little closer.
Maybe you want to cook the Thanksgiving feast for your family of 12 this fall. Then surf the web for a recipe. Or better yet, call or visit someone who makes divine stuffing. Shop for the ingredients and do a trial run of just that dish.
Work up to it.
And challenge yourself to relish every single moment of the experience… not just the Finish Line.
P.S. I’d love if you’d share your big goal with me! What are you dreaming that’s so big you almost can’t believe you’re thinking about it?