I’ve been working my way through The Fire Starter Sessions by Danielle LaPorte slowly but surely. Heavy on the slowly, light on the surely.
It’s a work in progress.
In the meantime I try to at least keep up with her blog and this afternoon I found myself inspired by her most recent burning question asking “what do you suck at?”
When you cop to your shortcomings a number of wonderful things can happen. You become more accessible to the people around you, you invite other people to step up and shine, and you create space for support to come into your life — you actually don’t have to be awesome at everything. Go figure.
-Danielle LaPorte (via WhiteHotTruth)
So what do I suck at?
I suck at death and illness. I’ve been through my fair share of illnesses and funerals, but I’m not typically your go-to support person during these times. I have a disturbingly rational view on mortality and, as a result, I never know what to say. So it’s always – always – painfully awkward for everyone involved.
I have a hard time being interrupted. I hyperfocus on the task at hand and when it’s interrupted by anything – spontaneously or planned – it usually elicits a highly emotional response from me. It’s something my family gives a wide berth, bless their hearts, but it makes me a bear to live with during periods where I’m juggling a lot of projects alongside my responsibilities as a regular human being. Responsibilities like eating … and sleeping … and generally being pleasant company.
I not great at follow-through – and I’m positive that this little nugget is 90% of the reason for the one above. The list of unfinished books and projects, the unreturned phone calls, the unanswered emails – they all serve as a reminder that when I shift my focus I tend to lose interest in the previous project and my backburner becomes so full that it’s more like a backbonfire.
I suck at being silent together. I can forge my way through a lot of tasks every day, in solitude, without saying a single thing. But just as a for instance, if my husband happens to be in the vicinity while I’m watching The Real Housewives of Someplace Somewhere (and trust me, he’s NOT watching the show) I feel the need to pause it at regular intervals and interject commentary and analysis. As if he cares. For some reason the silence between two or more people makes me incredibly anxious.
I’m not good at sharing. I missed that day in preschool, I guess. Maybe it’s because I was the youngest child. Or maybe it’s because I’m not the greatest with the concept of abundance. The bottom line is – do NOT ask to borrow my favorite sweater or try to sneak a french fry off my plate. It’s a good way to wind up on my shit list.
I suck at sports. Pretty much every sport I have attempted. But to be fair – I haven’t played ALL the sports. I’m not exceptionally coordinated. Also I am not a fan of getting injured, which happens frequently if you’re not coordinated. Plus I’m not all that competitive when it comes to games and competitions. You really need to care about the outcome at least a little bit in order to be any good at sports.
I could go on – gardening, accepting compliments, handling surprises, mailing packages, making appointments – I’m readily aware of many of my shortcomings.
The point of the exercise was to acknowledge these areas of suckitude, accept that they’re a part of who I am, and then come around to a place where I’m grateful for all the things that I don’t suck at.
Like I have a crazy amount of respect for other people’s things, because I’m so cautious about sharing my own. And I’m a good person to call when you feel lonely, because I won’t allow any silence between us. And if it’s your task I’m working on – you can rest assured that I’ll need to be dragged away from it kicking and screaming.
So really, some of my greatest strengths are only possible because of the things I suck at.
Doesn’t that just put a lot of things into perspective?
What do you suck at?
If you decide to share your own, let me know!