I used to think that objects weren't very important. I actually regarded them with disdain, like my life would just be better if I could live without them or at least with fewer of them. Even now I struggle with caring enough about them to do something when all the measuring cups are either broken or have the labels all rubbed off. (I know which one is 1/4 cup and 1/2 cup, but my husband bristles every time he has to use them.) But I am changing my tune about objects--it's just that it takes awhile to cull through one's entire life and true up to a new belief.
By anyone else's measure, it probably wasn't long ago that I had this revelation: Objects will always be a part of my life. Every day I wake up and must put something on my body, so I might as well have the things around me be soulful, beautiful, inspiring or comforting. Now I believe that objects not only matter, but that they matter greatly. They are the artifacts of my living. If I use them well, they call me forward into possibility--who I am becoming, who I was always meant to be. It was this turn in perspective that was necessary for me to begin making good things of my own and sharing them with you.
If you've got to wear a shirt, you might as well wear one that reminds you of who you are instead of forgetting the way you so often do.
I threatened to make this shirt design for months, as a "gift" for a couple friends of mine (who shall go unnamed). As I got to know them and their brilliance started leaking out all over the place, I was astonished--not at their genius but at the way they so diligently kept it under wraps. I started blowing the whistle on their calibrating as only a fellow calibrator can.
I've been calibrating for as long as I can remember. Trying not to be too much, too emotional, too serious, too intense. Trying not to overwhelm people with too many words, or words that are too conceptual and not chit-chatty enough. Trying for the love of God to learn the social scripts and play my part faithfully even while there's no room inside of them for who I really am. Worried at every twist and turn that the belonging I crave will fall away if I let the real girl out, with all of her turbulent goods exploding all over the table. I've described myself with phrases like: "Unfit for Public Consumption" and "Terminally Serious". I've done a lot of shrinking back, holding back, swallowing hard and cringing, all along the way.
A very wise woman told me around this time last year, It is exhausting to be two things at once. I thought, You have no idea. That's what all my calibrating has won me: exhaustion. This weariness that stretches all the way down into my soul's bones. And just like I changed my tune about objects, I'm ready to do an about-face here. I've been chewing on this idea for some time now: calibrating no more.
It's not easy to change our habits. It takes some time, and it often means starting in one place--one relationship, one kitchen drawer--and moving our way slowly through the house of our life, trying on our new way of being. In the meantime, our past version, that more comfortable part of us, works furiously to forget and go back to her old ways. And it's not easy to come out and admit that we've been hiding our parts and pieces. That we've been keeping our brilliance under wraps. First we need to admit it to ourselves.
That's where this new Clark Kent tank comes in. It's to wear at the end of the day when you come home and wash your face and tell the truth to yourself in the mirror even if you haven't done it all day. It's for under your sweater at the business meeting where you promise you will speak out instead of quietly nodding. It's for those flashes of ideas that you really need to pay attention to and value, whether they seem practical to your inner censor or not.
The world needs your brilliance. So join the club.
The "Closet Genius Society" Clark Kent tank is availble as part of The Iconic Self Home Retreat Kit, or for individual purchase.
$30 USD, ships free worldwide
"Closet Genius" Clark Kent Tanks are soft and stretchy with navy print. These run small, so size up if possible.
Photo by Bella CirovicCLICK BOTH BUTTONS: