A few years ago I was at a James Taylor concert.  I’m a big fan. I’ve seen him in person many times, starting when I was twelve, forty years ago. So I’ve been up on who his background singers are and who has been in the band — Russ, Kootch, Kate, Andrea, David, Kate, and Arnold, to name a few.

Taylor is famous for supporting other musicians well and showcasing their talents. Yet when I last heard him, there was a funny moment where long-time backup singer Arnold McCuller had a solo riff, after which Taylor quipped, “You sound good, Arnold… too good maybe!”

I remember Olympian Kerri Walsh curtsying once during an interview. It was a jaunty little move, evidence — I thought — that she was feeling a bit expansive and playful, as well she should have, decorated athlete that she is.

You realize in those moments that we all know, instinctively, how much we should shine, when we can grab attention, when we shouldn’t. Arnold probably knows when he should grab the spotlight (in his solo career) and when he should make the headliner look even better than he does. Kerri knows when it’s her moment and when it’s not. Cause we all do.

Yet there are also times when we don’t shine when we could and should, when we hold back, when we think we shouldn’t get credit, be known, be celebrated for our awesomeness… and we’re wrong.

Sometimes it’s more difficult to be seen as amazing and glorious than it is to be seen as inadequate, bad or wrong. Think about that. It takes a lot to just sit with people appreciating you, doesn’t it? 

Give it a shot… let yourself be celebrated. Take your moment (or two) in the spotlight. Cause you are shine-worthy. We all are.

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