The Journey| Living in the Gray

Breaking / Carousel / Entrepreneurship / Life. / SS News / Woman / July 6, 2014

I’ve been in this awkward space in life.

It’s this weird intersection of feeling lost and found, weak and strong, assured and uncertain…all at once.

Press_FaceValueUp until this point, a lot of my decision making required black and white thinking. I got pregnant young; education was the tool that would enable me to access a better life.

Black and white.

I pursued an education despite some tough odds and got my degree. Next: get a job.

Black and white.

I got a job. And then it ended. I had a choice: continue on the known route…or venture the other way.

Cue the gray.

When I chose to become an entrepreneur—to pursue the dreams and visions placed inside of me along with the desire to bring them to fruition—I chose to live life in the gray area.

Since that decision, life has required something different of me. Something that is powerful enough to make a person question what exactly it is that they’re intent on accomplishing in this life. As quickly as I could tell you to live in the moment—to make the most of today—I could also tell you to not just live for the moment, but to live for the next stage of your life. The truth, as I’m learning it at this moment, is that life requires a balance of both, and it’s not always clear how or when to act on either option. I’ve been trying to figure out how to let go and hold on at the same time.

It hasn’t always been very clear, or felt very good, or made me very comfortable.

For example…

When I first started blogging, it was a great release from so much that I had going on in my life; I was simply there to vent aboutjustathought1 my ever-evolving understanding of life, through my love of writing, in hopes of inspiring another while also sharing some of my work in the process. Then the blogging produced a brand and not long after, a business. These new realms came with far more responsibilities, demands, threats—so much more was on the line thanks to this risky dream of mine. It wasn’t “just for fun” anymore…it was an essential key to my family’s livelihood—to the breakthrough for which I’d been praying for years.

While things in my life had changed as a result of the growth (mainly for the better although some were extremely painful) the overall reality of why I had embarked on my chosen journey was unchanged (although admittedly a lot less clear): I wanted to affect other’s lives in a positive manner through my life experiences. The reasoning behind my passion hadn’t altered…but my perspective did. I struggled time and again with maintaining my perspective of the transitions that were happening blatantly, and not so blatantly, in my life. In the process of that, my voice—my blogging voice, that is—grew more silent. I felt that I couldn’t really write because I was too busy trying to live—trying to keep up with all the directions that I was broadly being pushed and pulled in.

I grew increasingly, and silently, frustrated.

This particular area in the school of life, I stumbled repeatedly in…oh man, have I stumbled. But I’ve come to realize that with each stumble comes another shift in my perspective of life and my purpose. It’s not often that your perspective shifts all at once—that your mindset becomes completely renewed in how it processes life’s occurrences and how you will react to them. I for one can attest to the fact that the shifting of my perspective has come gradually, in the gray areas where various life situations have required me to shed my insecurities, fears and certain aspects of my self-image.

reflectionI think somewhere along the line, I got too caught up—one too many times—with who I was aiming to become and neglected to acknowledge the woman that I am today. Not tomorrow. Not yesterday. The woman who woke up and saw this day…the woman who got me to this day by the grace of faith.

I think somewhere along the line, I got too caught up—one too many times—with anticipating the challenges that come with new territories, and neglected to really stop and remind myself of those which I had already overcome. At the time that I faced those previous challenges, I wasn’t equipped with every tool that I needed at the moment, but whatever I lacked I made up for with my wits and instincts. I learned and created my way to the next level. This gray area is no different, though it may look and feel different.

I think somewhere along the line, we all get too damn caught up—too caught up on who we want to be, who we should be, where we should be, where we’re trying to get to, how we’re trying to get there, how we’ll actually get there…

You know, thinking and acting from such a perspective can be draining as all hell?

It can cause you to miss your purpose in TODAY’S moment because you’re too busy, worried, or stressed concerning yourself with the fulfillment of your life purpose—the painting of the bigger picture.

Your life purpose is best realized and fulfilled hour by hour, day by day, week by week, and so on so forth. It’s fulfilled by living it day in and day out, no matter what conditions or limits it must operate in. You could have your life purpose completely revealed to you at age 22. And yet if you were to spend every day looking for it to be manifested exactly as it was revealed to you, you’d become disappointed rather quickly; you know what you saw—what you want—and so you’d likely develop a level of anxiousness to see it, live it and be it. As you should! Is it not a great thing when you can recognize the potential that lies within you? It’s definitely something to be excited about.



The thing is, just because you’ve been shown a glimpse of the big picture doesn’t mean you’ve been excused from still having to paint it stroke by stroke.

These flurries of strokes within the last six months of my life—some rushed and bold with the force of my hope, frustration and excitement behind them, others timid and light handed painting my fears and second guessing for the world to see—they’re all creating my bigger picture.

I’m not so much concerned with what the masterpiece will look like anymore. I’ve become more concerned with simply ensuring that my purpose and passions are captured in every combination (the gray area) of strokes applied via divine brilliance and human error on my life’s canvas.

Remember: Live your purpose day to day, stroke by stroke. Don’t worry about the gray areas, so much; you’ll see the necessity of them later. Those strokes are what will enable you to see the oridnary of your humanity in the extraordinary of your purpose: the masterpiece that is life and life in motion through you. Those strokes are going to humble you just as they will assuredly empower you.

At least…that’s what I’m learning to let them do for me.

*Applies a new stroke*

– Sincerely Syreeta

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