David Talley3 Comments

How to Be the Person You TRULY Want to Be

David Talley3 Comments
How to Be the Person You TRULY Want to Be

I’m remembering who I am.

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Recently, 

I had a dream, that for some, might appear to be nothing more than the funky discourse of an high-dosage of melatonin to shut out the sounds of late-night hostelers barraging in to the room after a night out. But for me, this dream had a very significant meaning, and when I woke up, I knew exactly what it meant. More on that in a bit…

Many of you have seen tattoo that is placed on my left forearm, palm-side. It’s been a main feature in many of my photos since I got it. It’s a tattoo I took nearly 2 years to commit to, and I was only able to commit to it after experiencing one of the most trying seasons of my life. That season looked like:

  • losing all of my camera gear (worth $10,000, uninsured),
  • dealing with a relationship that, while full of love, was very difficult, as both parties had differing beliefs,
  • being completely uninspired or capable of creating any art, and learning how to do away with my old self, the habits that were horrible and held me back from the fullness of friendships, family, and God. (If you didn’t know, I’m a Christian.)
     





It was like fire during that season, which lasted nearly all of 2014. I thought I wouldn’t be a photographer anymore. I thought I would never have my gear, career, or most importantly, my art back. And I had to learn to trust. To trust God. To trust myself. To trust my friends. To trust my family. And more importantly, I had to learn how to turn bad situations in to good. Or rather, to perceive the bad situations from a different angle. That’s where the cube tattoo came from. When you look at it one way, you see it fading away. Look at it another way, you see it popping out. A chance for any viewer to shift their perspective. For me, a constant reminder.

So, what happened in the dream?

In the dream, I was looking down at my arm, and the tattoo was fading away, right off of my arm. I clawed and clawed to get it back, but it was deep under layers of skin. Gone. I couldn’t reach it. And when I woke up, I knew what it meant. Amidst all of the struggle and tension and difficulty I’ve been experiencing in Italy, I haven’t remembered my very own guiding sentence. I haven’t been turning the dark in to light. I haven’t been looking at negative situations from another angle, like I was so attuned to doing just one short year ago. This is who I want to be and who I am, but for a moment, I had forgotten. 

 

"Amidst all of the struggle and tension and difficulty I’ve been experiencing in Italy, I haven’t remembered my very own guiding sentence. I haven’t been turning the dark in to light. I haven’t been looking at negative situations from another angle, like I was so attuned to doing just one short year ago..."

"Now, I’m not saying positivity is about skirting the negative feelings, dancing around them like they don’t exist. On the contrary, without them, we wouldn’t know how to feel ANY happiness..."

Now, I’m not saying positivity is about skirting the negative feelings, dancing around them like they don’t exist. On the contrary, without them, we wouldn’t know how to feel ANY happiness. But with a correct perspective, I believe that “even the darkest of moments are followed by an explosion of light.” It’s what I call my “guiding sentence” - something I teach about at my worldwide workshops, and this week, I was shaken in to remembering my sentence by way of my own actions.

How did I get out of this and be who I truly want to be? 

While the past two weeks of my life haven’t looked anything like 2014, I’ve been a bit of a wreck the last week or so. I’m abroad right now on a worldwide workshop tour, and just finished up some time in Italy (I'm in Japan now, where all is well), and in Italy I  had two missed planes, broken-down trains, location changes and scheduling difficulties, language barriers, strep throat, among a plethora of other issues. That’s not to say the time in Italy wasn't good - I had so many great moments in that country, but I wasn't myself. I was short with people, I was angry, stressed out to the max, sad, and unmotivated for more than 7 days. So much that I actually got sick… and now, I am realizing that it’s all because I forgot, just for a moment, why I do anything that I do. I forgot how to BE who I truly WANT TO BE.

"With a correct perspective, I believe that “even the darkest of moments are followed by an explosion of light.” It’s what I call my “guiding sentence” - something I teach about at my worldwide workshops, and this week, I was shaken in to remembering my sentence by way of my own actions."

I live for the moments where the light sparkles in a student’s eye. I live for the moments of sun rays blasting through the cloudy sky. I live for the warm handshake of a stranger from another country in an airport. I live for the message about my photograph that touched someone deeply, more than anything they’ve ever seen. I live to change the dark in to the light, and I’m remembering now who I am. That this is who I am meant to be. My hope is that you always remember this, too.

All it takes is a bit of clarity, and a small reminder, every day, to be who you are truly meant to be. Write down a sentence that guides who you are, or take pride in something that reminds you of why you exist and who you see yourself as - your BEST self - it can be a tattoo, a sentence, a necklace, a gift from a loved one, a journal, a picture, anything at all! This constant, small reminder will help you be who you are truly meant to be. It's your core, it's who you truly are, and all you need to remember is a small reminder. All you need to live it and be it is to remember it throughout your day, even when things get tough. :-) 

What do you do to remind yourself of what you believe in? A tattoo? A “single sentence”? Let me know in the comments below!

I'm on a mission to show that the light will always pierce through the darkness.