“So much for going for a small role, huh Dad?”

Her face was fully aglow from the brightness of the iPhone as she read the email. And in an instant the size of her eyes doubled.

She got the part.

My daughter auditioned for a rather important part in her school’s drama club performance of “Willy Wonka”. This being her first year in this new school, she would be competing with seasoned students, more well-known to those who make the ultimate decision as to who gets selected for the roles. And since she has never been in a school play before, I had actually tried to convince her to try out for a smaller, less visible role.

Something safer.

She didn’t quite see it that way.

One of the countless joys of being around my daughter is her blissful enthusiasm. Everything still feels possible, and if it doesn’t work out she’s quickly on to something new. Disappointment never lingers. At her young age she isn’t yet jaded, hasn’t yet been broken by a world which seems more driven to keep people down than to lift them up. She has yet to define the limitations which will ultimately impact the rest of her life, limitations for what she will allow to be possible for herself. I say “yet” because it almost feels inevitable, that at some point she, like most of us, will have learned enough about life to draw certain conclusions about how life really works and let that influence what she feels is possible for her.

Isn’t that usually how it works? At some point, life wins and we simply surrender and live by a new set of rules?

Kinda like what most of us adults do, isn’t it?

Telling my daughter to play small has led me to ask if I’m telling myself to do the same. Where in my own life have I decided to play small in the name of safety at the expense of more fully evolving and playing the leading role in my life?

We were all created to offer this world the greatness only we can bring to it. That doesn’t leave a lot of room for playing small, does it?

It’s a great day to be you!


photo credit: Avel Chuklanov

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