“To know oneself is, above all, to know what one lacks. It is to measure oneself against Truth, and not the other way around. The first product of self-knowledge is humility”
– Flannery O’Connor
Have you ever had those moments, where you set out to achieve something in your life and what you actually ended up doing was something completely different? That the dream you had of who you would be and what you ended up being, was not what you had in mind?
How does one come to terms with what seems like failure? How does one find peace with one’s shortcomings, when we live in a culture that is all about achieving success?
The Humble Journey to Greatness
In this week’s musings I wanted to share Cheryl Strayed’s message which really spoke to me. In her talk ‘The Humble Journey to Greatness’, Strayed shares the feeling of failure she felt, when she wasn’t able to achieve this image of ‘greatness’ she had for herself.
This experience of disappointment, led her to look inside herself and to realise that her dreams were actually getting in the way of who she was supposed to be.
“I had to relinquish all those anthems of greatness and of aiming high . . . they weren’t serving me anymore.
I knew I was going to fall short of greatness and so I had to rewrite the story of what greatness was.”
― Cheryl Strayed
To Make Good on One’s Intentions
Instead, she learned to surrender to her own mediocrity. She goes on to say that when you surrender to your own mediocrity, you are humbly acknowledging that the very best thing that you have to give is also the thing that only you can offer. That rather than paying attention to anyone else’s script of success or goodness, we must sing with our own voice and in doing so, we will achieve true greatness.
To see her talk click here.