I've watched other photographers go through it. I've watched myself go through it. Any profession, any walk of life - at one point, you stop and wonder... am I good enough? Am I where I should be? In our human tendencies.. we dissect, compare. Sometimes we feel ahead of the game. Sometimes we fall short. We stack up the odds against ourselves. We do it. We know our worst insecurities. And sometimes - that fact? That fact alone is what we allow to reside in our hearts. We pick our "frailties" apart one by one and sort them out, attributing each a tag of influence or cause. Only thing we are left with is sorted and tagged insecurities... and let us not forget... the lovely sullen emptiness that follows as the caboose to the precarious, pitiful parade. But... we do it. I am laughing and shaking my head as I myself am guilty of this - all of it.
Why do we? If this life is a journey and each person a different gifting to behold, a different contribution to make during our time here - why do we label ourselves by classifying the things we think determine us? They don't. False perspective makes us question our purpose. True perspective? Solidifies purpose.
Life will never be about the perspective of accolades declaring who we are. But guaranteed ... it will be about purpose. And what was ours. Was my purpose to be as good as so-and-so someday? That's a great goal - but one should never feel satisfied that they've arrived. There is always learning to be had and growth to achieve. The people that get this? Watch them soar. They aren't worried about what anyone else is doing. They aren't comparing. They just continue to move forward - journeying ahead.
The purpose is to stay on the journey you are called to, do your best and enjoy each moment of discovery that comes along the path. It is really about discovery of your talents, your strengths .. you. Avoid the shortcuts, the potholes, the detours - push through the construction! Accept where you are today and realize that you won't be there tomorrow. And that whether you move forward or backwards - you are still called to a journey that doesn't care about destination. There is no destination. There's only journey.
I truly believe in a plan for each life. That although we are given free will, we are each designed for something truly special and unique. Don't waste time wondering if you are good enough or where you should be. If you know that to which you are called to - do it with purpose.
I have always known that God gave me a huge love for art. Even as a girl I saw beauty in things others did not. I knew that I would study art/design early on. But never in a million years - even after taking classes in college did I figure that my heart would be stolen by photography. But you see, the journey I was on led me to it. There is purpose in the journey even when you don't know your destination - just ask hindsight. Had I not studied art, worked in Marketing and Graphic Design for so long - photography had not gone digital... all the what ifs.
I was called to this for a purpose. And when I look at it in that perspective - insecurities and measuring ups fade away, don't matter. Because really, each time I photograph people, it's a blessing. It's a gift. It's an honor. I don't ever want to lose sight of that or feel that I deserve to book sessions, or deserve to excel or deserve to make 'X' amount of dollars. No, truthfully? I don't deserve any of it. I don't. I am considerably blessed to be on the journey that I am.
There's a musician I really like that sings about a purposefully lived life. Sarah Groves. We hold all the keys to our undoing. (lyrics) I love that. We decide so much of who we become. Decide to enjoy this journey, every single step - even the hardest steps - follow through, they lead you to views you can't enjoy without the hard work of climbing forward. Decide to accept each day with grateful indebtedness and each dollar as absolute blessing. Decide to live a life with purpose, not comparison. Decide that on this day you have come very far on this journey - far from where you have been - but that you will push harder, learn more, stretch further ... tomorrow and every day thereafter.
And.. if your perspective matches your purpose - you will.