I had this fixation a long time ago that to be a published author would be a measure of my life worth in some way. And then I published a bunch of stuff, and that fixation went away. I now turn down publishing opportunities unless I really believe in the project. So it is not publish or perish, but publish what and where I believe – one of the reasons for this blog.
I have been thinking of this more too of as I move toward my “retirement” which is actually only a transition to another kind of career. I think of this idea in terms of Twelfth Step work. I am incredibly grateful that sobriety has given me the opportunity to live a life in recovery and meaning. Professionally, I value most and feel the best about my ability to empower others in their process toward finding meaning in their own lives. This comes back to the Wounded Healer I blogged about last week.
This thing is a three-sided coin. On one side I am able to be of service to others in sharing my experience, strength, and hope. On the second side, this sharing and being in community with others is also a learning and growing experience for me. On the third side, I know that I must give it away to keep it. Working with others provides me that opportunity.
That old line of publish or perish means little to me. Perhaps more fitting is “serve or starve” or “give it away or give it up” or . . .