By acknowledging the limits we face, and tapping into our natural talents, we overcome deficit to find true strength.
When first learning to scribe, I was incredibly intimidated by colleagues who could quickly produce realistic pictures of people, animals, buildings, and objects from memory. Some people have this innate ability, where they pick up a pen, start working at a wall, and everything they make is recognizable. They listen. They draw. Go!
But that definitely was not me…
It took 1-2 years of very dedicated journaling, where I wrote words alongside sketches, to realize that my style – my true voice – was going to have to be something new, to me and to others. It would be some mix of what I knew my hand could shape, and a processing skill unique to my brain.
What resulted was an organic, nature-based approach* that more accurately represented how I saw and made sense in the world. I failed quite a lot in private and public while figuring this out. And my strength – surfacing coherence – only became clear after many, many years of this too often awkward and aching process of experimentation.
And this leads me to the point of authenticity. When learning to scribe, I emulated others. Our teams would literally “wall copy” to document the work, which really is an excellent introductory way of learning.
To uncover our unique gifts and give them shape, though, requires an additional kind of diligence.
We grow when we follow our curiosity – whether it be working with leading thinkers, visiting museums, or gaining exposure to other disciplines and art forms. Our view of things shifts as we take on new vantage points, like walking a route normally driven, or flying above a field of grain we are used to seeing as cereal in a bowl.
Additionally, we settle into our authenticity as we start to listen to our internal voice, the one that says: “This is true. Yes.” To the impulse in the gut: “Okay, go with it.” To the heat rising through the veins: “This matters.”
As we hear these messages and listen to them – like we would take advice from a mentor or a coach – we inhabit our truest self, the one that has been waiting all these years for us to grow up, to show up.
We learn through copy. We advance through integration. We master by tapping into our own source.
* Thank you Bryan Coffman, showing me there was a place for abstraction