I love talking; shocking, I know. I also love to listen. One of my favorite things in life is to find myself hours later deep in conversation. It could be about anything, really, but my top favorites are personal growth, relationships, and food. I LOVE food. Those conversations, especially when you’re hungry, where you just sit and talk about how delicious food is? It makes me hungry just thinking about it. One day I’ll write about the decadency of cake….
We’re not going to talk about food today, even though we’re talking about having a full plate. By “full plate” I mean the idiom “my plate is full, I can’t take anything else on.” We naturally use this term for declining invitations because we are too busy. I would like you to think about it in a mental/emotional sense while reading this. Put your life on a plate, and see how it fractions out. Is your plate full of your food or others’?
My friend’s husband and I were talking awhile back, and he made a great point that stuck with me. We were talking about this crazy life, and he referred to having his wife, two kids, and not much room for anything else. Obviously he has relationships with friends, co-workers, and roles aside from being a husband/father. But what he chooses to nurture ultimately rests in his family and self.
I think that growing up is more than just getting older; it’s making a life of your own. It’s putting things on your plate that fill you, and require attention. There’s a difference between worrying about others, showing concern, and just talking about their lives…gossip; we all do it! When we spend too much time talking, we might not be proactively helping them, and we might also be ignoring our own helping on our plate.
You’ve reached the (young) age where your plate takes precedence, and if there’s room, fill it with YOU-grow, learn, reflect, dream, and inspire. We tend to get bored and settle on the topic of other people’s lives, which isn’t a crime, but isn’t character building for ourselves either. Also, we might let it take up some mental-rental space for free, which leaves room for comparisons, judgements, and then overdue necessary eviction notices!
Oh ya, always make room on your plate for cake.