Saturday, December 27, 2008
Getting To Know YOU
Valentine's Day, 2006 - Exactly 10 days after the biggest breakup of my then 29-year-old life. This has become one of my fave pics of myself. (Overbite and all, lol.)
A few weeks ago, I blogged about my eventful evening with Diane von Furstenberg. In this post, I mentioned what I think is a profound piece of advice from Diane:
Have a really good relationship with yourself.
I've been thinking about that quote a lot since I posted it here. Like most of you, the end of the year is a time for reflection and planning/setting goals for the coming year. Also, the domino effect of our grim worldwide economy has truly started to kick in. Several people I know have been laid off from their jobs recently, most companies had minimal to no bonuses for their employees this year and corporate holiday fiestas were basically non-exsistent.
What does this have to do with Diane's quote you're wondering? A whole lot. We put so much focus on our jobs (Note the difference between a job and a career - you can never be fired/laid off from a career.), our relationships and yes even our families that we too often forget the one guaranteed constant in our lives is always us. We must stop giving all our power to others. Jobs come and go. Sure, most of us have to work to eat and provide for ourselves and our families. But we can redefine what "work" is and recognize that our skills and gifts can be applied to more than one thing or place. We say things like, Oooh, he lost his good job at the bank and he and his wife just bought that new house. I feel so sorry for them. Let's change this mindset. Think of all the people who started successful, groundbreaking businesses after they got fired.
Sadly, significant others, spouses and family members can come and go too. That sentence might seem surprising coming from me as I'm always raving about the importance of family. But guess what? Marriages don't always last. I witnessed my mother become a widow when she was still fairly young. But she didn't wither away and become some shrinking violet. She lived and continues to live out her dreams like purchasing a home, traveling the world (she just informed me of her latest big excursion this week) and creating the type of life she wants for herself. Many of the things I've witnessed my mother accomplish solo are things I know she discussed doing with my dad but she has continued to roll with the punches. Ladies, (I hear women say this much more than the fellas) be careful of professing things like I'm nothing without you to your husband or boyfriend because you might actually start to believe it.
Children shouldn't dictate happiness or a total sense of purpose either. No matter how many Oprah episodes you watch and Dr. Spock books you read, children do disappoint their parents. (And sometimes parents disappoint children.) I don't have any offspring of my own but I've witnessed teenagers of Cosby Show like families become pregnant or father babies barely out of middle school. (Having a child as a teenager is not a death sentence by the way.) And even children come and go. I know someone who has had to bury 5, yes FIVE of her own children. So statements like My children are my everything are dangerous words to utter as well. Yes children are a blessing and I imagine can offer a renewed sense of self but they should not be the only thing that makes life worth living. Seems to me that in order to "raise" someone else it helps to be as complete as possible first.
I hope I haven't made anyone sad or somber and as everything else here at PPT, what I write is all my mere opinion. The beauty of this realization, for me anyway, is knowing that every area of my life: my career, my relationship with Mr. TK, my family; they are all sweeter when I'm good with me. Even the sour stuff is easier to swallow when I'm working on being a better Bsquared.
Thanks again Diane. And folks have the nerve to say that fashion designers are empty.
P.S. - I scored two fabulous DVF wrap dresses this Christmas! Anyone in the Charlotte, North Carolina area should head to the sales racks on the second floor of Neiman Marcus in South Park Mall immediately. Amazing deals folks.