This week we went to watch some circus cabaret. It was fairly low key – no elephants juggling chainsaws or anything – but very enjoyable nonetheless.
It got me thinking though.
As I watched a beautifully graceful young girl dangling 30 feet in the air from a piece of silk, my first emotion was jealousy. ‘It’s not fair,’ I thought to myself, ‘why don’t I look like that? Why can’t I even do the monkey bars in the park and yet she can hang upside down from a piece of cloth by one foot?’
I had to stop myself then, and switch out of my ‘bitter, chubby, 30-something’ mode. She wasn’t born able to do it after all. She has practiced and practiced, determined to succeed. I could do it too if I wanted it badly enough and wasn’t so easily led astray by Jaffa Cakes. It’s true that most people probably wouldn’t want to see me in a leotard, but that’s not the point. Potentially, I could be an acrobat. Fact.
Potentially, we could be an awful lot of things couldn’t we?
The idea of all of this potential is something I find hugely uplifting, and it’s normally a good indicator for me of my underlying mood. Being able to see the potential in things, in an individual opportunity or in life generally, is what positivity and happiness is all about for me. When I'm finding it hard to be inspired and struggling to imagine the future, I know I need to take some time out to recharge my batteries. When I feel my mind wandering though, thinking up ideas, spotting new avenues to explore, it gives me a particular kind of energy and excitement that makes me feel really alive. It’s that sense of freedom, of ‘I can do anything I want!’
Of course most of the time I don’t actually know what it is that I do want, but that doesn’t matter, because that’s part of the fun isn't it?