The Pinterest Me and The Real Me

 

When I got my new office a few months ago, I was ecstatic. My own room. After 26 years of parenting six amazing, wonderful, messy, creative, loud, children, I finally had my very own room.

I began filling it with things that inspire me and taking pictures as I staged each area.

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A chair from the thrift store with only one little spring that pokes me if I don’t sit just right.  A small dresser from an estate sale.  The $3 chicken wire cabinet  from a thrift store.

Apparently, whoever built this room, made the closet opening about one inch too small for the bi-fold doors so it’s always been open or covered with a sheet.  Sitting in the chair one day, frustrated with the view of the messy closet,  I had a burst of inspiration.  My wedding quilt!  It was made by my Gramma Geneva just before she lost her marbles.

Mindy and Gramma Geneva 1993

Yes, prior to Alzheimer’s, my Gramma Geneva was the Quilting Queen.  She made quilts for friends, neighbors, relatives and missionaries for decades.  My wedding quilt was one of the last she made.

I had previously sewed fabric loops on it for hanging, but hadn’t had a wall big enough for it for many years.  It fit perfectly on a shower curtain rod and filled the room with a sense of family, love, and inspiration.

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I bought this inspiring wall art from Target when I was really supposed to be shopping for practical stuff like toilet paper and dish soap. People say you shouldn’t impulse shop, I find for someone who hates to shop, the impulse buy is usually the best buy.  I rarely see something I LOVE, so when I find it, I buy it.

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My little cupboard ready for tea with a vintage ceramic hot pot and two vintage cups. It was a good idea, but I’ve never made tea.

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I blogged about the cool To Do List I made out of a vintage window.  I use the vintage typewriter to make my graphics for my posts, then I  imageand imagethe graphics to draw traffic to my blog. I story candy in the enamelware pot.

Others might look at my pictures and be jealous or frustrated because:

  • I have my own office.
  • I have time to shop at the thrift store.
  • I found cheap vintage items.
  • I am so crafty.
  • I am perfectly happy in every way.
  • I have a wonderful family.
  • I have my life perfectly under control.

But, I’ve only shown you the part of my life I wanted to show you.

 

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I’ve shown you The Pinterest Me, the part we show to the world to say, “Hey, look at me! I did something cool!”

There’s nothing wrong with that.  We need to share our bursts of inspiration, whether it’s in the kitchen, the craft room, our faith or in relationships.  We need to rock what we do well and share it with others.  It’s part of our purpose, our passion, and even our ministry.

But, that’s not all we need to show others.

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We need to show them the other side of the room.  The messy side.  The “I haven’t finished this” and “I can’t get it all together side.”  The office is a work in progress, just like The Real Me.

When you only see people in church on Sunday, you get part of the picture. When you see them driving, eating, dealing with their kids and cheering at a softball game you see a more complete person. image

When we blog in a way that shows only the perfect parts of our lives, we may be alienating others who are struggling.

I  have had days where I was totally accepting of cancer, witnessing, drawing closer to the Lord and appreciating each day with my family.

I have had other days when I was frustrated,weary and weepy and wanted it to all just go away.

I have had days as an inspiring mother,  imparting wisdom and love into the hearts of my children.

I have had other days where I have yelled in frustration and wondered why I became a Mom, because I am such a failure.

I have had times when I made amazing meals.

I have had other times when I ordered pizza three times in one week.

I quit reading a blog because every post showed how perfect her life was. She whipped up a vintage dress from an old pattern while her teenage daughter made exotic baked items.  She showed  gardens that never had weeds, children that never misbehaved, and the dinners that were never burned.  I couldn’t relate.

Her blog only created envy and disappointment in my heart.  Her house was bigger and older, her talents greater and her spending seemed unlimited. Nothing ever seemed to go wrong in her life.

  • I wanted to know how she fit sewing into a life with many kids.
  • I wanted to know how she inspired her teenager to make so many meals and treats for the family and smile like a model the whole time she was in the kitchen.
  • I wanted to know if she ever dreaded waking up in a day because she had too many things on her To-Do List she could never accomplish.

She didn’t give me anything to help me attain the talents or peace she possessed. She was wonderful, she was amazing, but unapproachable.

I’m not for showing all the dirty laundry and spewing secrets about friends and family that aren’t yours to share.  I’m talking about showing both sides of your world, the successes and the failures.  Show the real journey.

  • It makes you more credible, because you show you’re human.
  • It makes others more willing to confide in you because nobody wants to admit to a perfect person they’re not perfect.
  • It gives your readers hope.  If you overcame, so can they.
  • It makes everyone more honest.  If you’re willing to admit failure, you give them permission to be honest with others.

How can we bear one another’s burdens if we don’t know what they are? 

How can we lift someone up if they’re too afraid to tell us they’ve fallen?

How can we comfort someone if we don’t know what’s breaking their heart?

Showcase your strengths.  Blog, Pin, Tweet and Facebook your talents and victories.  Share what you’ve been blessed with to others who might need that recipe, decorating idea,craft, writing tool,  spiritual encouragement or just a laugh. Do what you were created to do.

In the right timing, in the right way, showcase your weaknesses.  Admit failure, admit struggles, and tell how you overcame. 

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Show The Pinterest You and The Real You.  Your readers need both.

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17 Responses to The Pinterest Me and The Real Me

  1. hjhusby July 5, 2013 at 8:01 pm #

    Thanks! I needed that!

    • Mindy July 6, 2013 at 4:38 pm #

      Thanks for stopping by my “office.” I’ll clean up before you stop by next time. 🙂

  2. phantomdiver July 5, 2013 at 8:35 pm #

    I love this. Thank you so much!

    • Mindy July 6, 2013 at 4:39 pm #

      Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment. I appreciate your time.

  3. Kim Vandel July 5, 2013 at 11:12 pm #

    So true. I can’t relate to perfect people. It’s so encouraging when people share their struggles but also include a sense of hope.

    • Mindy July 6, 2013 at 4:40 pm #

      Kim, you are so right, the sense of HOPE is what we all need. There is hope that someday my office may be clean, and may be hope that some of my other struggles may be washed away. Thanks for commenting.

  4. Alyssa July 5, 2013 at 11:20 pm #

    This is true! I would hate to be misleading on my blog, but I could probably stand to be a bit more transparent. Thanks 🙂

    • Mindy July 6, 2013 at 4:42 pm #

      You are at the stage, Alyssa, where moms need so much affirmation. Yet young moms feel at times they can’t share their struggles. How dare you admit you got impatient with a two year old? But, even better, how do you stay patient? You have much value in what you are learning and I love that you have a heart to share it.

  5. WholeHearted Home July 6, 2013 at 2:13 am #

    Not only did I love this post, Mindy, but I found it inspiring. When I have time, I enjoy Pinterest, but everything is perfect there, not like my real world. Maybe we like to escape to that Pinteresting world of perfection sometimes because our life is most definitely imperfect. I blogged last week (this week?) about painting my laundry room with leftover paint just to lift my spirits since it is a very unfinished room with one wall cement, one wall the sheet rock is taped and finished, while the other two walls are studded out with exposed insulation. It looks great now and I don’t *see* the exposed insulation and cement wall because the room perked up with color and cheer.

    • Mindy July 6, 2013 at 4:43 pm #

      I loved that blog, Judy! Because we all can’t have perfect worlds, we can make do, or do one little thing that can make us more content in our circumstances. I’m gunna’ add that pic to my board! I also plan to take a pic of my messy linen closet some day….

  6. Kendra July 6, 2013 at 4:41 am #

    Either way…I like your office! My house looks like that room right now.

    • Mindy July 6, 2013 at 4:40 pm #

      Hey, Girl, take a pic! I’ll put it on my Pinterest Board I just started, “The Real Me.” Yep, my house is a disaster, constantly going through closets, rooms, bookshelves, trying to regain territory.

  7. Spy Garden July 7, 2013 at 2:25 am #

    Very well-written post. I am probably guilty of only showing the “pretty” side of life on my glog (garden blog;). I do discuss garden pests and problems but for the most part I use my blog like an art gallery; of the pretty pictures I want to save and enjoy. I try to interject humor and some funny anecdotes, but I typically only post pictures and very few words, so again, they are usually the “pretty things.” Your post did inspire me to be more specific with how I deal with garden issues and not be afraid to show the weeds in a photo or two 😉

    • Mindy July 7, 2013 at 3:54 am #

      Thank you for such an great comment. Yes, people need the eye candy you provide and the inspiration, but we need to know how your gardens got to be so awesome! 🙂 I appreciate you stopping by today.

  8. Bevy July 8, 2013 at 5:28 pm #

    Good stuff to chew on… fer sure.

  9. Dana Kolste July 8, 2013 at 6:18 pm #

    But I WANNA hide my junk – except I’ve run out of room =) Sometimes I look at the pictures I take and think “Dummy! Don’t you ever look at what is piled in the background?” Then I shrug and think, “who has time for staging photos?” Thanks for sharing your real life!

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