Personal Writing

Who do you think you are?

I was working in the sun room early one recent morning. Right after the sun broke over the horizon of houses and trees, I looked up. This was the view that greeted me: pure beauty. I didn’t set this glorious still life; I simply noticed it.

Struck by the perfection of the scene, I grabbed my phone and took one photo. Flowers from last night’s dinner guests, a mug from a dear friend filled with Barry’s Irish tea, my paper calendar, my all in one journal, scheduler and dream keeper, and the sun streaming in to bless it all.

I count myself tremendously fortunate that beauty overtakes me often, and I snap photos to “prove” my gratitude to the Universe for giving me a joyful spirit to be so often present to it.

I wrote on social media:

Some days all your *stuff* just clicks. Everything matches and is in a synchronous flow (it’s nice when it’s perfectly color coordinated, too!). Stop and appreciate the beauty and perfection of a thought, moment, day like that because most days are nothing like that.

Moments like this are so, so rare.

Some days feel hard, like an uphill climb. Too much on the to do list. Too much loss or change or disruption. Too much doubt or overcast skies. Too much.

Many days are just dull and forgettable.

But a moment like this, with the sun streaming, the tea brewed, the planning started and the flowers setting a gorgeous stage, is like reaching into a pocket and finding an unexpected $20 bill.

In the big picture of life, $20 might not change much, but it’s more than enough to feel surprise and delight, to wonder how it got there and to pack it away for a special little treat later on.

A moment like this is a chance to (re)Discover Your Spark. Don’t let it pass by unnoticed. Store it away for another day when you need to be reminded of this glimmer of perfection and your place in it.🔥

#extraordinary #rediscoveryourspark #prettymugsandflowers

Who even am I?

A recent blog post centered around a question *my mom asked me when I was 18-years old: Who do you think you are?

A friend wrote and said, “What your article made me wonder is who DO you think you are?? I will be asking myself this question tomorrow. Then I will go be that.”

Who do I think I am?

Hmmmmm…deep breath:

I’m Dayna Del Val, the girl whose parents christened her with a movie star name having no idea she’d have a personality and belief to match. I’m the blue eyed redhead in a family of brown and hazel eyed brunettes; the left-handed granddaughter of the witches they weren’t able to burn. I’m the perpetual dreamer zealously carrying her knapsack of hopes and plans up a slippery mountain one arduous and extraordinary step at a time. I’m the fighter with a tender heart; I’m the advocate who’s often felt alone. I’m the doubter who’s had angels sit on her bed and speak to her on a dirt road in the middle of nowhere. I’m the broken, failed and fizzled superstar who, like a Phoenix, is slowly rising from the ashes of her own making.

I am woman, hear me roar.

*Allow me to take this time to be crystal clear: for all the “damage” my mother inflicted on me, it pales in comparison to the force she built, supported and inspired. I don’t often enough recognize that there were tsunamis of “You’re going to be Miss America” compared to the single time she asked me who I thought I was. Thanks, Mother, for all of it. Truly. I am who I am in large part because of you.

Who do you think you are?

As is often the case, where you place your focus is where your energy follows. Consider each of these sentences, as they might come from an outside person or your internal voice:

WHO do you think you are?” implies you’re way off base about the belief in your own spark you’re carrying around.

“Who DO you think you are?” invites a dialogue, to dig deeper and uncover parts you’ve maybe never considered, to let go of others you’ve held on to past their expiration date.

“Who do YOU think you are?” says the questioner has an idea but is curious, either genuinely or condescendingly, to hear your thoughts.

“Who do you THINK you are?” compels you to really mine how you’ve defined and continue to define yourself. There is no wrong answer.

“Who do you think YOU are?” says that your worth has been measured and found not only lacking but highly inferior. Horrifically, I believe this is the multi-generational lived experience of far, far too many of our BIPOC, disabled and GLBTQIA+ fellow human beings.

“Who do you think you ARE?” Are is defined as “present tense second-person singular and present tense plural of be.”

To be.

I am.

You are.

What are you meant to be? Who are you?

You alone get to finally decide how to embrace the tone and answers to that sentence. Don’t put this work off, even if you’re afraid to confront it. It’s the central question of your life: Who do you think you are? Until you answer it, nothing will “click” and you’ll miss out on your glimmer of perfection and your place in it.

Be who you are meant to be.

If you need inspiration, download my free (re)Discover Your Spark guide to get started on this journey to being.

Dayna Del Val is on a mission to help others (re)discover the spark they were born with through her blog and newsletter, her professional talks and the (re)Discover Your Spark retreats she leads. Dayna works with people to help them not just identify and articulate their dreams but to develop a framework to get going on the pursuit of those dreams—today, in the next few months and for the years ahead. She's at the intersection of remarkable and so, so ordinary, but she knows that pretty much everyone else is, too. She's excited to be sharing this extraordinary journey with you.

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