It’s late as I write this. It’s been a big day - a productive one, and I’m in that nice wind-down mode with a glass of wine and an epic album playing on Spotify as I sit here in the dark and type.
I just got back from a 10 day trip to a crazy little island called Mustique in the Caribbean. We were running a pilot for the Ambassadors for the Planet curriculum and shooting a bunch of content for the island about their amazing sustainability initiatives. 100% dream work.
And yet here I am feeling kinda flat.
I wondered whether it was just the standard post-trip flatness but actually I’m realising that it’s something different. You see the trip marked the completion of a massive goal. The culmination of 18 months work - of blood, sweat and tears. A project, that at times, felt like it would never be finished. But the next thing I know I’m sitting on a balcony overlooking a ridiculously beautiful bay holding the curriculum workbook in my hands. Suddenly this work was real. It belonged in the world. It was no longer this conceptual thing that I tried to explain. Or a bunch of digital files that I was sick to death of looking at.
It was done.
I’m not kidding myself - the project as a whole is nowhere near complete - but this milestone is a huge one, one worth celebrating. But instead of celebrating I found myself falling down a rabbit hole of doubt. Maybe it’s all wrong. Maybe I screwed up. Maybe I need to start again from scratch.
And so now I’m back home I’m curious about my response. The first thing I recognise is the voice of my good friend Lucy saying ‘tired thoughts are bad thoughts’ which is always a worthwhile reminder (because let’s be honest, we’re all pretty good at amplifying minor issues into major ones when we actually just need a nap).
But then I realise that sometimes, when you reach the top of the mountain you might just need to lie down for a while and stare at the sky.
And that when you lie down, you might find that all sorts of crazy emotions show up. Relief. Gratitude. Fear. Doubt. Excitement. And when they all blend together it can feel a little overwhelming. Everyone around you is telling you how rad it is and all you wanna do is stay on the floor and breathe.
I’m not writing this to share some incredible wisdom or some fascinating insight - I guess I’m writing to understand. And I’m giving myself permission to stay in this space for as long as I need to. I know the celebration will come. But I’ve been here before - with everyone getting over excited about something I had poured my heart and soul into - and it didn’t work out so well.
So I’m cautious. I’m not racing out and buying champagne anytime soon. I’m taking some time to feel all the feelings. To know which ones are useful and which ones are not (hint: I don’t need to start it all again from scratch). I’m enjoying the moments of excitement and I’m also acknowledging the fear.
I guess I wanted to write this tonight to share this : It’s ok for things to feel differently to how you imagined they would. It’s ok to slow things down till you feel like you’re ready to go again. And you know what ? It’s ok for life to throw some curveballs at you.
Sometimes they’re the very best thing that can happen.