Painful Authenticity…

This was inspired by a Scott Dinsmore quote: “Be honestly and unapologetically you. Because you being uniquely you will allow the people you interact with to feel comfortable being uniquely them – perhaps for the first time in their lives. There is no more authentic way to connect and no greater gift to give.”

Beautiful. I’ve never heard it put in quite that way before.

I was feeling that the blog was a little heavy on the ‘fab Miguel’ stories and a little light on the other kind. Here’s my attempt at balancing that out.

  • I can be way too confident. The fact that this is balanced by moments when I have zero confidence makes little difference. A little humility goes a long way. Among other issues (imagine being married to someone like this!), this leads me into ‘winging it’ in situations that really call for a good bit of preparation.
  • I am often way too intense. And overbearing. Intensity can be good in small doses, but I need to be aware that I have something to give even when I’m not being intense. There does exist a ‘Miguel’ within me that is not ‘on’ all the time.
  • I can be completely self-centered. My best moments have come from me being other-centric, but boy howdy, my default mode will forever be “me, me, me”. For better or worse it’s how my brain is wired and I need to constantly manage this if I’m to have good relationships with anybody.
  • Stubborn. Omigawd, don’t even ask. I wish I could be out-stubborned, but I haven’t yet seen it. *sigh*
  • Bad at following up on friendships and other relationships. Sometimes I am Mr.’burn your bridges’. One of things I’m learning about myself doing an online course on ‘anti-networking’ (, is that I’m OK at making connections with people but absolutely terrible at about maintaining those relationships.
  • Despite being a music teacher and asking my students for ‘X’ amount of practice time each week, I have pretty spotty practice habits and always have. Especially when things get busy as they have for the past month or two. Thank God one of my mentors gave me permission to get in one, solid, 3 hour block per week…otherwise *eesch*
  • My main food weakness is bread–can get enough of the good stuff. This I blame on my grandmothers flour tortilla’s. Oh. My. God.
  • As much as I love to be creative, I am one tightly wound creature of habit. Ask me how much my diet and exercise regimen has changed since May of ’11 (answer: not one bit). Or how much what I eat for breakfast varies from day to day (amazingly little). It’s practically comical…;)
  • I fail all the time. Ev-e-ry day. (I’m the living proof of what the Zen Buddhists say–“Life is one continuous mistake”.) This past Saturday, I was teaching a group I work with, and I was completely losing it and being ineffective. Thank God my wonderful friend Peter Romo was there to help me pull out of the tailspin. Sadly, this is not an isolated incident. And, this is supposedly what I was put here on earth to do. *ahem*
  • Speaking of failing all the time, while I’ve been lucky enough to find what I was put here on earth to do (teaching and performing music), I’m having a rough go at making a living doing it. Right now it’s heavily under-written by my job working with developmentally disabled folks, and my wife. Not a nice, positive feeling. No.
  • I can get emotional watching movies. “Hugo”, “The Soloist”, “Sherlock Holmes”…even the odd Harry Potter film or a chick flick (“Sense & Sensibility”). Usually has to do with scenes about family, friendships and other relationships.
  • I love traveling. I didn’t used to, because I had to do it for my job and it took me away from the family too much. But…towards the end of that job, I loosened up a bit and my daughter got older, so it was easier to be away. Now, the international travel I did at that time contains a lot of great, wonderful memories (not all that work I had to do while traveling, the other stuff ;). In fact, one of the top three musical experiences of my life happened in the midst of a business trip to Sao Paulo.

Now, had I written this when I was younger…well, I would have never even started it. None chance. One of the things that allows me to write something like this now is that I realize that every weakness points to a strength and vice-versa (i.e. a weakness like stubborness on the flip side means I can be an incredibly faithful friend). This allows me to be a little more gentle with myself, but that doesn’t make any of this easy to write, or even worse, to read. *ugh* (Actually, this was much easier for me to write that to read.)

I’m sure there will be a follow up installment on this issue, but this is at least a fair start.

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10 comments on “Painful Authenticity…
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