Nagging Little Things

Recently, I've been waking a lot in the middle of the night. Maybe it's the sound of my snoring husband and our giant farting dog at the bottom of the bed...who knows. Whatever it is, I'm awake and alone with my 57 problems.

57 problems? Get over yourself, Julie! 

Okay, so I don't mean big, scary problems, I'm talking about the nagging little things that are constantly bouncing around in my brain. If you look up 'problem' online this is how it is defined:
a matter or situation regarded as unwelcome or harmful and needing to be dealt with and overcome.

My description of 'problem' clearly gives the location of the nagging things - in my brain and the online definition speaks to a need to deal with or overcome.  That disconnect is clearly a struggle for me. My problems are typically the same nagging things that just churn inside my head. ALL. THE. GOD. DAMN. TIME. which definitely highlights the need for me to deal with them.  So what are the problems and what am I not dealing with? Here goes:

  1. Leadership - I think we need to change the way we engage as community leaders. I want to create a training that focuses on leading with courage. What is Brené's people can prioritize my vision for this? How will I do it? What would the end goal be? How would I know it's making a difference? Who the hell am I to bring this type of training into our region?
  2. Parenting A Teenager - I wonder if other parents would like to have a space where they could bounce ideas off of other parents trying to give their kids tools to be resourceful and articulate when faced with the challenges. How would we avoid the freak out if unconventional and uncomfortable topics were brought up? Could our small town handle something like this? Would we be up for the ongoing work of starting uncomfortable conversations and be willing to listen to our children's point of view without dismissing it? What the fuck do I even know about parenting a teenager? 
  3. Politics - Can I openly support a person and not support their party. Can you be an influential community leader and still commit to compassion as a core value? How much civic engagement is enough? How do I get others involved beyond just election day? How do I practice self-care when there is so much to do to change how we govern our communities. What do I have to contribute to our political system - or am I just completely out of touch with 'reality'?
  4. Education - Do I walk away from the school board and the dysfunctional culture related to education in my district and just relax? Do I jump right in to the conversations related to the complexity of the public education system, the absolute need for clarity of roles and accountability at all levels? Will I have the energy for this if no one else shows up motivated to help? Is my community even aware of the severity of the problem? Who do I think I am to challenge a system that is currently a lighthouse in our community? Maybe I'm the problem?
  5. Blogging -  How often should I pull my ass out of bed and write about this stuff in the moment? Will I ever sleep longer than 3 hours again if I do that? Does this blog really help or is it just another way I spew my shit all over other people? Are my blog posts just in the way of real stuff people want on their Facebook feed? What kind of self-indulgent narcissist must I be to constantly put my problems out for the world to see? 
  6. Limiting Beliefs - I want to talk to other women about the lies we tell ourselves that how they hold us back. How should I do that? Should I start a book club or a supportive group that meets for coffee. Maybe it should be open to both genders? How the hell do I know how to facilitate something like that?]
So there's the list of my seemingly different problems --- with that one glaring consistency. The I Am Not Enough track playing on repeat in the background.

Looks like it's not the dog farts or the husband snores - it's the tiny voice that's trying to keep me comfortably in that safe place of no risk or vulnerability. That voice that wants me to avoid pain, struggle and living big. So I look back over time and relive the experiences when I was at my bravest and feeling the most alive I've ever felt. In those key moments, I told the nagging little thing bouncing around my brain something like this: Although I appreciate your protective tendencies, I will not be afraid to be who I am. I Am Enough. I can do hard things and I know that even when I fail -- and I will fail -- I will have done so Daring Greatly.

And then the bouncing stops. good night.


  1. I adore your writing. Many of your problems are similar to all of us and that is why you should continue to blog. You put in print the funny, horrible, serious, silly thoughts that bounce around in our female heads. Thank you!

    1. Thank you for reading, Erin. I'm glad my stuff is helping other sort through their stuff.