Warriors Take Personal Inventory...
"We all like to think we're right about what we believe about ourselves and what we often believe are only the best, most moral things. We like to pretend that our generous impulses come naturally. But the reality is we often become our kindest, most ethical selves only by seeing what it feels like to be selfish assholes first."-- Cheryl Strayed
This quote makes me laugh and cry all at once. I'm Warrior enough to see myself in it. I'm relieved to be past the era of selfish A-hole I allowed in my late teens, early twenties. I genuinely like the me I am today. I am consistently Dana A. Warrior. If I died tomorrow the family, friends, and colleagues who'd gather would describe me the same. They would have independent, singular stories but their experience would be similar. There would breathe a consensus reality of who I was that would be alive, even in my death. There would be chuckles alongside the phrase,"...that is so Dana...". I'm proud to say that! I proudly walk through life with a solid core.
I am no chameleon.
As Warriors we must set within ourselves an unshakable set of values. Who we are at our deepest seat should be immovable. Our sacred soul should be master and we must realize it lives, not in our intention, but rather our actual execution of consistent action. I shake my head when I discover people constantly experiencing the world as receivers. There are those so entitled and spoiled they rarely go out of their way, through gesture, to give another unexpected delight. Gestures by nature are small, not a production. I've left many a note on sticky pads with a snack or run with a thoughtful token when life got tough to say--"I AM HERE! Keep trucking". Warrior and I were notorious for our note writings for one another.
I'm the recipient of such warmth still. My best friend, Denise, never lets me leave for a business trip without an offer to watch my pups, a handwritten note to carry, and this time even the most gorgeous pink poinsettia to welcome me home. I'm very lucky, for all I might give it is so delightful to sometimes receive. The other day one of Warrior's dear friends, Randy, hand wrote me a note, entitled "old school text" and stuck it to my treadmill. The few lines scrawled told me what a great job I've done in the things I've faced.
Do you do those things for other people? Do you receive those things from people you do for, too?
Personal inventory is an important assessment, Warriors!
Do not fluff yourself up as doing more than you actually do in any area personally or professionally. "Working hard" is not the same as working effectively. I bust my ass. I do not bitch or complain. I mentally calculate an energy equation of what I have to give, my desired outcome, then plug in the variables to best solve the calculus of my life. I do not have more hours in the day than others. I do not require any less sleep. I just do the work without whining. I tackle life with more force than I "feel" sometimes. I take this business of life seriously...with fierce focus...including my exercise. I do and I do and I do but still leave time to play and room for people who compliment and uplift me.
I love that Cheryl Strayed gives purpose to the era or times we have all been selfish A-holes. I was the baby girl in my family growing up and in some ways enfeebled. When a family let's the baby in a family stay the "baby" because it is comfortable to the family sensibilities and dynamic it mars that "baby's" destiny. I've actually had experience with what others would label abuse but have come to believe this culture of enfeebling adults is abusive too. Let's stop that sh*%! Let's require our children and OURSELVES to stand on our own two feet.
It's a double edged sword to be so tough and be a Warrior but is there really any other way to be truly alive?? I have written and spoken of how when you are strong and capable nobody brings you tea and toast when it would truly serve. In my recent personal inventory I gave thanks for my solitary fortitude. I adjusted my thinking of "wouldn't that have been nice" to smile and query, "Could I? Would I? Would I let my girls crumble if they faced hardship?"....
The core of me screams--"NO!"
The deepest reaches of my self says I could not allow my warrior girls disabling weakness. I take seriously my job in equipping my husband's legacies to be warriors in life. With that task in mind I help steel my daughters' spines as I smooth their hair. I will remind them often, "You were born to be a Warrior Woman...it is your birthright, it is your crown...fight like mad to be incredible.".
I will teach them by word and show them by example to have a core and follow what they know to be right.
It is one thing to know and want to do right. It is another to actually do it. It is not an excuse to avoid doing right out of fear. That is cowardice. I've watched my girls be treated wrongly by adults and those adults be allowed to get away with it because nobody would put their neck on the line. If I were to die tomorrow every single friend I have would tell you I put my neck on the line without fail.
When it comes to doing what is right do YOU put your neck on the line?
It isn't enough to do the minimum of right...that by definition makes it wrong.
Are you a warrior for RIGHT?!?
I believe in being a warrior for right. I believe in true self reflection. I believe we are all jackasses and jerks from time to time. I believe we must weigh our integrity as the greatest sum of our worth in our accounting of life. I believe a stripped down, naked, personal inventory leads to true LIFE. I believe the core must remain unimpeachable so in our death we will be correctly remembered...
for our truest selves...ALWAYS!
Denise, thank you for the time you take to do for me, small, beautiful things. 💖✨Thank you, Randy, for my note.😊