It is Sunday morning. I am making blueberry muffins for the family. Big mixing bowl, muffin mix, two eggs, ¾ cup of milk (not water), and ¼ cup of oil. Blueberries are drained and waiting. It is a familiar routine. It is a foundation of our family. A simple thing that helps keep the family and me from getting lost in the turmoil of life.
This morning I am still reeling from the feelings of doubt and uncertainty. I had a number of opportunities that I felt qualified for, but wasn’t even given a chance to prove myself. No interviews, sessions not accepted for conferences. I know that there are so many factors involved in the process of selecting candidates for a position, but, honestly, rejection hurts. You wonder why. You wonder what didn’t they see in you.
These questions fill my head as I get all the ingredients mixed and fill the muffin cups. The oven beeps that it is heated to 410 degrees. I place the pan in the oven and set the timer for 18 minutes. I grab my coffee cup (I make my coffee before the muffins) and sit at the table thinking.
Success is a tricky concept. It can be measured by money, titles, or objects if that is your definition. But what if you just want to do your best, to help people be better, to raise a strong family? What if your idea of success is happiness? How is that measured?
Part of the way we measure that type of success is from our jobs, from the impact we make in our field of expertise. Those are hard to measure and sometimes the most challenging aspect of success because of change. A new boss, chasing a goal, or a decision made by administration. Things change and sometimes we don’t know why. Life doesn’t always go our way and we don’t know why. That is why doubt can bring you down, you can’t argue against it when there is no easy measurement to counter its voice.
The timer goes off. The muffins have a golden hue mixed with dots of blue. They smell warm and tasty. The family gathers around the table. Glasses are filled with orange juice and milk. Butter is applied to the muffins for those who want it. There is chatter, request for more drink, and even laughter.
Sometimes success is measured not by money or a job, but by a dozen blueberry muffins every Sunday morning.