You Are Meant to Shine

They Spark the Flame

You don’t have to be a big sports fan to get goose bumps when witnessing an Olympic victory. It’s electrifying to see an athlete give everything and then hit the mark. It must be what keeps us watching American Idol or any other of the plethora of talent-search shows on TV these days. All hype aside and despite the manufactured aspects, it is undeniable when pure talent shines through. It sparks something inside us that is much more than a fixation with celebrity. What is it that moves us so profoundly?

I think my client Shirley¹ touched on the answer to this question in a conversation I recall from over a year ago. Shirley was preparing for a job interview and also developing an idea for her own business. Though she was certain it was time for a change, both options raised some fears. As Shirley spoke, and after doing a brief physical exercise that I call “wings,” an insight dawned on her: I’m supposed to be big. I’m supposed to be magnificent. By “supposed to be,” Shirley was saying that we are designed to be great and to pursue excellence.

Whether on a world stage or in smaller venues, we are all meant to shine.

What, When, and Where?

photo of sun in blue skyTo shine is to reveal who you are at your core and to use your talents well. The opportunities to do this won’t necessarily be climactic or witnessed by large numbers of people. Certainly for most of us, they’re not televised. They might occur within the space of a conversation with just you and one other person. So how do you know what the best way is for you to cast your brightest light?

It can be overwhelming to think solely in terms of specific jobs or careers. Instead, consider the situations and environments in which you thrive:

  • What types of activities, tasks, or projects do you most enjoy?
  • When do you feel energized, fully absorbed, or eager to share your perspective?
  • When have you heard people say: “That’s so you. This is right up your alley.”?
  • Where are you when you’re doing your best work, e.g., with large groups or individuals, out front or behind the scenes, in personal or business settings?

It’s not about grabbing the limelight or having to be the center of attention. Shining comes from within, and while you carry this light with you wherever you go, there are conditions that will optimize your ability to fully shine.

Allow Yourself to Shine

Being yourself. Getting into the right environment. Doing your best work for the people you can impact the most. Giving it your all. Not holding back. Expressing yourself. Connecting with the joy of it. These are all elements of shining.

This Week’s Call to Action:

  • Right now, exactly where you are, how can you allow yourself to shine?
  • As you think about the future, what is the optimal environment to apply your talents?

“And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously
give other people permission to do the same.”
—Marianne Williamson²

Here's to you,
Ginny Kravitz's signature

¹Name changed for privacy.
²This quote is part of a frequently cited passage from a book by Marianne Williamson, which I’ll share here:

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone. As we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

by Marianne Williamson
A Return to Love: Reflections on the Principles of “A Course in Miracles,” Ch.7, Section 3 (1992)

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