No, I can’t do it all. I am not the best at everything I do. And I am cool with that. I do not feel like I am lacking in success. Sometimes as women, we feel the shame and disappointment in ourselves when we are facing a wall in our lives; at work, in our relationships,within our personal journey; that we can’t get over no matter how hard we try. Not being able to concur a challenge at any magnitude, may bring feelings of failure. But what is failure, really?
I grew up believing that success meant being the best in whatever you tried. mirroring that belief, was the thought that failure meant that you were less than whoever could accomplish what you couldn’t. If only I would have got the message a lot sooner that: true success can only be accomplished when you realize that no one person was meant to do everything and I won’t be the best at everything I do, I may have accomplished so much more.
1 Corinthians 12:27
Now you are the body of Christ, and each of you is a part of it.
In our society, it has been engrained in us that a woman should be (or aspire to be) the perfect wife, friend, mother, business woman… We should never need help; but accept it either as a polite gesture, or a gesture of bowing down in submissive gratitude to the helper. In either capacity we can’t win. on the outside we protest “no one is perfect”, but at the core of our beliefs, if you aren’t claiming yourself to be an SBW (strong black woman) keeping it all together, you appear weak or less than the women who look like they are “doin’ it” in all areas of her life. And of course, what “doin’ it,” looks like to you is unique because we all have different views of success.
The truth of the matter is that each of us are given a thorn in our side. We all have an affliction, a flaw, a weakness; that is meant to keep us humbled when we start feeling bigger than we really are. I don’t consider my ADHD an affliction. It is definitely a thorn in my side at times, but it keeps me grounded and focused on my purpose. My ADHD and the way in which it causes me to interact with the world, tailors my gifts and makes those gifts specific to me. In turn, my limitations (not just those tied to ADHD, trust me) help remind me every day that I need others; and that my gifts are no more or less useful than the next person. The compensation for my limits may come in the form of what my child, my husband, my co-worker, and even my doctor, has to offer through their talents.
It should be obvious that no one person can do it all. I need you and you need me in order to keep our world spinning. However, the cliché lines like no man is an island and songs that sing about everybody needing somebody, are lost on us when we meet those infamous walls we can’t conquer. Instead of accepting the failure as a chance to reach out to get help getting over; it’s easier to either continue trying that wall and letting it become a symbol of your self worth or walk away completely which could mean the world misses out on your specific gift.
“If only I could get this budget balanced my problems would be solved. I should be able to figure this out! ” That’s something I used to tell myself all the time. Denying my own limitations and beating my head against the wall put me further in the hole. The denial even dictated some of the decisions about my life and my purpose, that surpasses money and material things. Balancing a budget is never going to be my strong point. My ADHD as well as my financial education, limit me in that area. This does not make me less of a mom, a wife, a friend, educator or business woman! I know about 3 folks I can call and say,
I am behind on these bills and I can’t catch up. I can’t see the problem. I need some advise!
There are many things that I do well. The only talents and actions that should matter, are the ones that serve as a tool to achieve my overall purpose of offering my gifts to better the world. This belief and attitude props me up when those feelings of shame and embarrassment try to knock me down and pull me away from accomplishing what is intended. If we were meant to do it all, God would not have had a reason to create so many variations of His image.
I am not all you want me to be, but I am all that God intended for me to be right now in this moment.
I keep this at the core of each of my decisions and it gives me a feeling of freedom. As I travel my journey with baggage that God equip time with, it reminds me that your equipment doesn’t look like mine and it’s meant for a different job. We were intended to be limited; giving of our strengths and accepting of others’ shortcomings in reflection of our own. Success is, delivering your gift to the world without allowing your limitations to stand in your way. Sometimes you aren’t capable of overcoming your limits on your own. Sometimes your gift needs a hand to lift it over that wall and deliver it to the world as God intended.
when you find yourself at a wall that you can’t get over, how likely are you to seek help?
would love to hear from you 🙂