Meraki- To do something with soul, creativity, or love; to put something of yourself in your work
We have another Greek word that holds so much meaning to me and cannot be defined or translated into just one English word. It is a feeling, an act, an action….. The process of putting your soul into whatever you are doing. What is something you do that you love so incredibly much you put all of yourself into it? An artist would be a perfect example of someone who does this. A songwriter, a chef…. A painter. They all put something of themselves into their work or the creation they are making. They then feel accomplished and want to share with the world because this creation they made is a part of who they are. I find that doing this in even everyday life actions can reap such amazing positive benefits for you. Meraki is often considered a verb because it is an action of putting yourself into that work. So how can you use or channel meraki into what you do!?
Some of my favorite words that many of you have heard me repeat over and over would have to be. “Be real. Be raw. Be you.” These words in themselves if you can achieve them are a form of meraki. Don’t be afraid to share the real you in EVERYTHING you do. Be passionate about the real you and don’t shirk away from wanting to share what you have to offer, because what you have to offer is so beautiful. Being real in society these days is incredibly rare so when someone is real AND passionate about what they love, that is something people gravitate to. Being real can be scary because you think “what if people laugh at what I have to offer or think? What if they shun me for what I am passionate and open about?” You must do it anyways. There will always be naysayers and people who could care less about you, your passions, and your realness. Those people however, are just holding you back. Do not let what they say affect you. Instead let it help you push yourself to prove them wrong. Share that passion and realness and the other real people out there will find you. Positivity attracts positivity. Like-minded people attract like-minded people. You will find that when you open up and share your passions you are not alone; you are far from alone actually.
I have found in my own journey recently how satisfying it is to do things with meraki. I studied music in college and so was taught how to portray the emotion I was singing about and how to feel it as well. I had to become whoever my character was. I had to feel what they were feeling while I was singing. It really helped me transfer that to other aspects of my life except for opening up about myself personally. This blog though has been my key for that. I made the decision around mid November I wasn’t going to hide anymore; I was going to share all the positivity and light I wanted to share. I was going to share my journey, my struggles, my passions… and heck does that still scare the crap out of me thinking about that. Putting myself out there! I am so incredibly glad I have been doing that however, because no way was I expecting the love and support and new friends I have gotten from being real and true to myself. That has helped me open up even more and share my passions and myself. I feel like my writing and blog has been where I have been truly channeling my meraki. I still do channel it into my singing as well and my cooking. The feeling of being true and real to yourself is so incredibly satisfying and rewarding.
I want to ask the question I asked in the first paragraph again. What is something you are incredibly passionate about? What is something you put your soul into and is so precious to you? It could be your fitness, your art, your writing, your family, caring for others, etc. It could literally be anything that is precious to you. How can you channel that love and realness you find in that aspect of your life into other areas? How if you are struggling with being real with yourself, how can you use meraki to help in your every day life. What can you do that will make yourself be more passionate and loving to yourself as a person as well as all those that cross your path? I know that can kind of seem confusing and hard to wrap your brain around. Like what is she trying to say here? Words are sometimes hard for me to express in writing when it is all in a jumble going through my head. I just wonder if we can take the passion and soul of meraki that we put into the things we love to do, into our actions towards others and ourselves as well. Can we share ourselves and our love with others to help brighten their day as well as ours? Meraki doesn’t have to always be for things or items. It can be for people and interactions as well. That is really important to remember. I was talking with my mom about meraki the other day and she mentioned Florence Nightingale and Clara Barton. Both of these women took care of the people under their watch with meraki. They soothed and healed and did all with love and passion and soul. Perfect examples of using meraki in human interaction.
So my challenge for you is this…. I want you to channel meraki into EVERY aspect of your life. Just like you would do with kefi and philotimo…. I want you to put your soul into whatever you are doing and be real. Share the real you. I want you to treat your interactions with others with meraki as well. Don’t be afraid to share that realness and passion you have inside of you with others, because being real and passionate these days is so rare, but precious! AND you never know who will come into your life and enrich it with their realness because they are attracted to the real you.