By Neelam Joshi
I’ve been reading Identity and noticed the “Identity Five” questions. I wanted to use these questions to create an article. This article will be more of a question and answer format, but it expresses who I am and hopefully will resonate with another.
What have I accepted in life that took time?
Over the last couple of weeks, I mulled over these questions to ensure I really took time to answer from the heart. I believe what I have accepted is to be patient.
I’m a slow learner and probably have a borderline IQ. Seriously, I look at my contemporaries with envy and despair – Director of X at Z Company, Sales Manager at Embassy Suites, and Project Analyst at B Company. Many of us (women) have been there, especially those like me. I’m at home and desperate for acknowledgement and validity, but I’ve learned to live with my shortcomings.
I’m right-brain oriented, and think I could have a malfunctioning left side. So, I’ve made peace with my dysfunctional, often stubborn left that calls for STRUCTURE, a SYSTEM, CONFORMITY, and those things that send my right brain into a tail spin…..NUMBERS. Instead I’ve tried to work with patience and tolerance with the right side. This is what I have, and I have to love it and embrace it fully.
My left brain reminds me to make a list daily (my right often rebels and ‘forgets’). I have a dozen ongoing ‘creative projects’ that my left frowns upon because they are continually on the ‘To Do’ list. I know now when my right is at risk of taking over my world, and I have to bring in reinforcements from my left.
It’s taken time and effort to stop myself from continually being my own worst enemy, and instead I accept with patience when I slip up. Trying to be perfect is not the goal. Learning from mistakes is. I have to remind myself daily about that, and unless I accept with patience and tolerate my own mistakes, I don’t have a hope in hell of accepting those of others.
What do I appreciate the most in my life?
My first instinct is to say everything! This happens to be true, but there’s more to it than just one word. When I look back on my life, I’ve made so many mistakes. Some really BIG ones like deliberately hurting someone’s feelings, telling lies to save my own hide, thoughtless, ignorant, pig-headed things. The list is endless. I appreciate the fact that painful as it is, I am able to reflect, learn, and move on to try to become a better person. I appreciate the repeat chances life affords me to learn from my own mistakes.
What is one of my most rewarding achievements in life?
I’m hoping that my life is not over as I write this. I would love to say my kids, but my kids are a separate entity. I am merely a tool to their success and achievements. The reward is watching them realize their potential to achieving their goals.
I think my most rewarding achievement to date has been the slow, painful, and often frustrating learning involved in designing my own website. I cornered my left brain into this with great reluctance, much procrastination, and many second thoughts. The right brain knew how it should look, and garnered the left to help in the process.
I proved to myself that, low IQ aside, I AM able to do what I thought was impossible–take good pictures (ok…they could be better, but I’m learning), upload/download, search engine optimizing, search engine marketing, meta tags—all those words that had me initially thinking, “WHA….???!!”. I believe I have to just keep chipping away at the mountain and someday I WILL see the wood (from the trees). At the moment, it’s all thick forest. The reward is when I come to a clearing occasionally and get an epiphany.
What is a not-so-perfect way on mine?
My own impatience with that infuriating ‘looking back at the past.’ You know, the ‘could have, should have, she said/he said’ part of you that regrets and wishes things could have been different and won’t move beyond a certain point.
Decisions we made in the past lead us to today. Some of those decisions were not great. So,it is what it is and it isn’t perfect, but you learn and start making lemonade. Live in the present, and think before jumping.
How would I complete the phrase “I love my….”?
Can I say more than “my life…..”? No. Imperfect as it is, it’s a continual work in progress. Just when I think I have a great path carved out, the sun is shining, cows chewing cud in bright green fields, flowers…you get the picture…great big avalanches run rough shod over my path and stop me dead. So, I pick my way through and start all over again reminding myself to exercise patience and tolerance while my right brain thinks of imaginative (and clearly feather-brained schemes) with my left holding the reigns and patiently steering the way.
P.S. With all this said, I have achieved a major milestone! I can strike this task off my ‘To Do list’, my left brain smiling triumphantly for once.