What we intend and what shows up usually looks very different. Sometimes what shows up is more satisfactory than what we originally intended. However, most of the time there are too many road blocks and detours along the rocky road toward the goal, and we begin to justify that “close enough is good enough.”
Important because the final outcome of our efforts is a direct result of the smart choices and decisions we make, and the focused work we put into it. That said, it’s important not to focus on the end result or future outcome. Instead, put all your focus on the work that you need to do in order to keep the project moving in the general direction you want to go. But don’t set your gaze on the goal posts, set your gaze on the work that is directly in front of you today. By doing so, you will ultimately find your way to whatever dreams may come.
I always thought that was a great idea for a company. In 1989 a college student, Brian Scudamore, saw what was wanted and needed, and provided a solution. Since that time, his company has grown to approximately 200 locations across three countries. The company slogan is: “We make junk disappear!”
Wouldn’t it be great if Brian sent a truck to every artist and trep’s home, studio, office or penthouse and made some of our junk disappear? Here’s a short list of what we could dump:
— Our resistance to change.
— Our chronic indecision.
— Our fear of failure or success.
— Our story about why we haven’t achieved our biggest dreams yet.
— Those pointless daily activities that disrupt our priorities, steal our focus and slow our progress to a crawl.
— All the folks in our lives that bring us down, lead us on, deflate our confidence and waste our precious time…bye bye!
— Everything that doesn’t align with our inherent desire for peace of mind.
Important because what’s left is that awesome feeling of breathing room, flexibility, liberation and inspiration that only comes when we declutter not only our exterior space, but more importantly or interior space.
Hopefully you are fully aware and consciousness of the fact that the way we work and interact within our industry, our business, and our careers, is in the midst of a massive paradigm shift. And just a reminder, that a “paradigm shift” calls into question the rock-solid assumptions on which the previous paradigm existed.
That said, shrugging our shoulders or flipping the bird at the many new jaw-dropping opportunities and possibilities that are currently swirling around dinner tables, breakfast nooks and coffee houses, will continue to make it harder to thrive during this time of transformation. And it’s not like this too shall pass, it’s more like this is the new normal.
Important because nothing is more damaging to a career, destructive to a business, or catastrophic to a creative spirit than an inability to pivot, a resistance to change, or an unwillingness to look at the big picture from a different POV. Especially when our comfort zone, and the circumstances we are accustom to are suddenly threatened.
Raise your awareness to a level where you can clearly see the “deep-truth” of how the world is changing today, especially with regards to AI’s exponential invasion into every nook & cranny of the entire entertainment industry!
Then educate yourself, do the deep research, and begin using the tools and technology to your advantage, in every area of your life, not just your career. Then find that place inside yourself where nothing is impossible and steer the ship from that POV. Not like positive thinking, more like intelligent foresight.
Important because a conversation about AI being your enemy cannot be complete without including AI as your partner.
At the heart of every success story lies an artist or entrepreneur who grappled with a profound internal conflict during a critical moment of choice: accept the risks and potentially attain legendary status, or falter in the face of the ‘flinch’ and be consigned to an unremarkable footnote.
The ‘flinch’ is a cunning delivery system, usually sourced in fear and adept at delivering doubt, uncertainty, and hesitation precisely when we are poised to make risky choices or take bold actions. Simply because the nature of the ‘flinch’ is not to inspire change or provoke greatness. Instead, it’s like shiny bait, luring us to play it safe and embrace mediocrity.
Important because pro artists & treps serve as living examples that the path to greatness requires acknowledging the ‘flinch’ but never succumbing to its limitations. And by defying the allure of mediocrity and pushing beyond the confines of repeating the ‘same old, same old,’ we have the opportunity to make a dent or a difference by stepping into the unknown with a clear vision, a fearless spirit, and a hungry heart.
Your career as a creative artist/trep is not a dilemma to resolve or a problem to fix. It’s actually the amazing odyssey of a smart, talented, independent, free-thinking, risk-taking, human being, who has chosen to venture out, onto the bumpy road less traveled, while being continuously blindsided with a gauntlet of impossible challenges, and only armed with a ruthless commitment to making a dent or a difference!
Important because there’s never any defeat, failure, or love-loss on this heartfelt dance with uncertainty. There’s only a missed chance at destiny if you don’t drum up the courage to step out onto the dance floor.
— Inspired by Andrea Balt
Forrest Gump’s “Stupid is as stupid does” is a variant of an old adage: “Pretty is as pretty does” or, “Handsome is as handsome does.” It basically means that true prettiness has to do with a person’s behavior, not just a pretty face.
Important because it all comes down to judging people by what they do, not by how they appear, or what you assume. A smart, talented person who does stupid things is still stupid.
I’ve said this before: Now is the time to huddle up! Now is the time to have dinner parties and bbq’s with like minded showbiz friends, artists & treps! Now is the time to have conversations at the deep end of the pool regarding our careers, goals, and dreams going forward! As globally massive as the entertainment industry is, we are still a small community of (mostly) awesome, creative, caring people who just happen to have something very profound in common: we love what we do, and we have chosen the bumpy road less traveled. Never forget, “there’s no people like show people!”
That said, there could be some financial relief for many of the cast, crew, and support folks currently out of work and struggling in all areas of our industry. I recently received a press release from Jennifer Jorge, the director of community services for MPTF(Motion Picture & television Fund) and here’s what she had to say:
Most of those who have contacted MPTF for assistance are our below-the line workforce, including IATSE and Teamsters.” Our broad range of social services have already been provided to thousands of industry members and their families this year; in addition, we have received around 1,000 requests from industry members in need of financial support and other social services due to the work stoppage. This is more than 3X the rate of inquiries we receive in a typical year for this timeframe. A very high percentage (89%) of these calls are from industry members who are assessed with high at-risk or crisis levels of need. The bottom line is people are struggling greatly, and they need our support. We are administering financial assistance funds for IATSE, Teamsters Local 399, the DGA Foundation, and TUSC (The Union Solidarity Coalition), and with that we are able not only to provide financial support and coverage for health care premiums, but also case management on other issues. If you are in need of assistance due to the work stoppage, please call us at 323-634-3888. Or visit us at MPTF.com.
Important because as a community, united in our efforts, we will persevere.
Scholars, politicians and educators have long maintained that each era has a unique spirit that sets it apart from all other epochs. Such a spirit is known as “Zeitgeist.” And capturing the zeitgeist is an essential pursuit for both artists and entrepreneurs, as they both strive to tap into the pulse of the present moment and create something that resonates deeply with the collective consciousness. For artists, it requires an acute observation of the world around them, as they produce and create art and entertainment that reflects the cultural, social, and intellectual trends of the time. Entrepreneurs are the visionaries who recognize the shifting tides and anticipate what is wanted and needed even before the masses do. Then they risk resources and reputation to produce it, and ship it.
That said, it’s important to remember that capturing the zeitgeist does not mean watching the news and writing a song about it. While staying informed through local and national newspapers is important, the online and television news media is mostly made up of an opinionated panel of selected influencers, charged with a specific political agenda.
On the contrary, capturing the zeitgeist involves going beyond headline news and understanding the underlying trends and shifts in society. It requires exploring various cultural, social and artistic expressions, such as literature, art, music, fashion, etc. These sources provide a more comprehensive picture of the collective values and mindset of a specific, cultural timeframe.
Important because by immersing ourselves in the zeitgeist, artists and treps can become the architects of change, shaping the narrative of our time and leaving an indelible mark on the collective consciousness. In doing so, we become not just observers, but active participants in the evolution of society, leaving a lasting legacy for future generations to ponder and appreciate. Never forget, throughout history, creative artists and risk-taking entrepreneurs are the only ones who have always pointed the way out of the darkness and into the light!
Worry management is an essential skill for artists and treps because the nature of our independent lifestyle involves high levels of uncertainty and risk.
However, we don’t have to worry about every single troublesome scenario bouncing around between our ears. We have the option of only worrying about what’s on our plate today, and putting off a few of those worries until tomorrow, or next week.
Important because Give yourself a break. Worries are manageable.
While the Skeptical remain stifled by the economy, stressed by technology, and hypnotized by the headlines of the day, the Confident are consumed with manifesting their ideas, honing their skills, and assessing their strategies with trusted cohorts.
Important because while the Skeptical remain anxious about the future, and indecisive about how to proceed, the Confident remain optimistic about the big picture and focused on the very next step they need to take in order to inch closer to the ultimate outcome they want to achieve.
Find your confidence! Not like it’s lost, more like it’s waiting.
While others like to grab the spotlight and announce, “Let’s think out of the box!”, pro artists & treps know there is no box. There’s only doing what comes naturally: creating solutions, designing alternatives, manifesting ideas, and achieving the impossible.
Important because The only box worth visiting is the one that shelters us from mediocrity.
When pro artists and entrepreneurs are lit up and on fire with sudden creative inspiration, their energy explodes, propelling them forward down the playing field with remarkable momentum. A circus of ideas come flying in, and they are able to channel their thoughts and visions into tangible creations or innovative business ventures. During this period, their mind is constantly brimming with new possibilities, and they find themselves in a state of heightened productivity and enthusiasm!
When those moments come, and you are fortunate enough to recognize and experience this spontaneous gift of inspiration, grab your notepads, devices and tools and go for the ride as far as it will take you, all day and night if needed! This is pure creative energy that spontaneously shows up, then eventually begins to dissipate. When it appears, and how long it lasts is out of our control. What is in our control is how we react to it.
Important because the exciting divine experience of a sudden strike of inspiration, is like receiving an unexpected beautiful bouquet of flowers, left at your front door from a secret admirer! And our job is to receive the gift with wholehearted gratitude and pass it forward!
While the top dogs at the WGA & AMPTP gather to battle it out, it’s a great excuse for artists in all areas of the industry to gather at dinner parties, cocktail hours, restaurants and coffeeshops, to network with each other, swap stories, share ideas, and forge friendships. And not just because of the writers strike. It’s more because we’re a unique tribe of independent, creative thinkers. And it’s empowering and motivating to have regular, deep conversations with other like-minded independent artists and entrepreneurs who are confronted with similar concerns, share similar goals, and experience similar angst.
Important because the people we hang with the most are the ones who either encourage us to become the best versions of ourselves, or validate our deepest feelings of unworthiness. Our degree of success is partially dependent on who we know, who we listen to and who we hang out with. Not like we’re snobs, more like we’re picky.
For artists and entrepreneurs, deciding what to do next can be a brain-fog of indecision. Why? Because our constant streaming download of bright ideas, dreams, visions, projects, prospects, possibilities, and way too many irons in the fire, often leave us sitting at the crossroads scratching our heads, wondering which way to go. So the next time that happens, take a look at your choices, then ask yourself this simple question: “What’s the very next right thing I should do?” Don’t get hung up on the semantics of the question, just do the very next right thing. Then after that, do it again, ad infinatium.
Important because I know it sounds simplistic, however if you make this a habit, what to do next reveals itself instantly, every time. Not like a lucky guess, more like an obvious choice.
Limbo is an isolated space in time. It’s like being stuck in the middle of nowhere—not moving forward and not moving backward. It’s a constant state of anticipation, waiting for a certain something to happen, but unsure of what the result or final tally will be. It’s a time warp between where you are now and where you will be once the call comes in, the deal goes down, a decision is made, or a conclusion is announced.
Unfortunately, limbo is also the mind’s favorite “gotcha game.” It starts the minute you’re locked in the waiting room, patiently waiting for something that could be a big leap in your career or life. And while you’re waiting, the monkey between your ears starts reciting all the logical reasons why the final result may not go your way! Therefore, limbo is a gap-trap, with The Monkees blasting in your EarPods 24/7!
Important because you’re a creative artist/trep, and it’s embedded in your bones how to navigate your way through gnarly situations. And living in limbo is an all-too-familiar gnarly experience. And it’s not easy, and it requires a willingness to sit with discomfort and uncertainty. However, the good news is, limbo does not last forever, it’s just a make-shift waiting room. And while you’re waiting, you have a unique opportunity to confront your limitations, your weaknesses, and your blind spots, and you begin to see things in a new light. And once that light goes on, your entire POV of the “waiting game” is illuminated, and you begin to see new creative paths, new business strategies, and new ways of reaching your career and life goals! Not like bending the rules of the game, more like breaking them!
What are you really hungry for? Money, acknowledgment, recognition, pizza?
– When we’re hungry for pizza we simply order one and the pang goes away.
– When we’re hungry for money we offer something so valued that people give us money for it.
– When we’re hungry for acknowledgment we tell our Facebook friends it’s our birthday.
– When we’re hungry for recognition we do something applaudable and praiseworthy.
Important because while it’s likely we will eventually satisfy most of our persistent hunger pangs, the only pang that continues to dodge and sidestep artists & treps is our insatiable desire to just “get it right.”
At this time in my life, with every vow I make and every stand I take, I listen to my gut feelings, my intuition and my inner intelligence much more than I do common knowledge, popular opinion, or advice from people who have never experienced what ever it is I’m confronting. Sometimes I hit the jackpot, sometimes I don’t. However, here’s when I really pay close attention to the simple warnings of my “inner acumen”:
— When it says: “This is wrong!”
— When it says: “You’re in danger!”
— When it says: “Walk Away!”
— When it says: “Don’t eat that!”
— When it says: “Don’t sign that!”
— When it says: “You should help this person!”
— When it says: “Avoid this person!”
— When it says: “Call 911!”
— When it says: “Don’t Think!”
I also consult my inner intelligence after I have completely digested all the facts, OR when I have absolutely no facts to go on.
Important because “What a lover’s heart knows let no man’s brain dispute.” ―Aberjhani, poet.
If one of your great ideas or worthy projects has finally started to take root and build some momentum, now is not the time to take your foot off the pedal, now is the time to floor it! Why? Because it’s at this time, when the pique excitement for a new idea or project begins to slowly give way to the reality of manifesting it. The money, time, responsibility and viability of the project begins to look daunting, and it’s at that point the monkey between our ears steps in and want’s to play. Even the most professional artists & treps sabotage their own credible projects, meaningful ventures, and personal goals and dreams, because of doubt, fear or a lack of confidence.
Watch out for it. The sabotage monkey will do you in every time. If you’re the leader of a group, owner of a small biz, or the president of a big corp. you have to watch out for others doing the monkey business. However, if you’re the CEO of your own world you have to watch out for yourself!
Important because always be vigilant of your own dark side creeping in to wreak havoc.
Create yourself or you will lose yourself in other people’s versions & stories of you.
If you still have a pulse it’s not too late.
If you can read these lines you’re not too old.
If you can take another step, you’re not too tired.
Rebuild your life every day, thought by thought, step by step, line by line.
Persist until the story you love is the story you’re living.
In their bestselling books, Blink by Malcolm Gladwell, and Meta Human by Deepak Chopra, both authors scientifically and philosophically demonstrate the fact that we already (unconsciously) know the answers to the most challenging questions the instant they show up. It doesn’t matter if it’s which agent to sign with, which drum set to buy, or wether or not we should reach out or hook up with a certain individual (or group). The instant the challenge, concern or question is presented, in a blink, the answer is already standing at attention right next to it.
Like that time when you were young someone said: “If you get stuck on an exam question go with the very first answer that popped in your head.”
Problem is, at that instant, when the first answer pops in our head we flinch! Then the fog rolls in, and doubt quickly clouds over the blink of truth. Often followed by either vacillation or procrastination. The challenge is to remain awake, aware and vigilant enough to recognize the blink and catch it before the fog rolls in!
Important because since the blink of truth is coming from your heart it’s always there, 24/7 waiting to be discovered and put to use. And once you see it the first time, you’ll always know where to look for it the next time.
Bonus Track: Legendary producer Rick Rubin gives this notion a different spin: He says flip a coin! If you’re at an impasse between two choices and you’ve honestly looked at every possible, conceivable outcome, and you still can’t decide which way to go, flip a coin! When the coin is spinning in the air, you’ll likely notice a quiet preference or wish for one of the two to come up. In these few seconds which are you rooting for? This is the option to go with. It’s the one the heart desires. The choice is over before the coin ever lands!
Dear crazy, creative reader,
What stands in the way of you playing a much bigger game? What’s your excuse, concern or fear? What’s stopping you?
How can you not see that we need your unique skills and remarkable talent more than ever before?
How can you not use the power of your words, and seize the opportunity to write encouraging stories, inspiring scripts and motivating movies and videos, especially when there is such a loud, desperate cry for inspiration and truth?
How can you not take a break from writing the same’ol predictable, ordinary tunes, and instead use your unique, creative style to compose powerful music & lyrics that reach in, grab us by the bones and lift us up? Heck, even poetry parlors are on the rise in this country! And the Grammys announced a new, special merit award for “Best Song For Social Change.” Why not go for that award?
How can you not transcend or excel your business or corp., when it’s so obvious that we need forward thinking, risk-taking entrepreneurs, publishers and producers who are aware enough to realize that our current reality is screaming for creative solutions to impossible challenges! And if you’ve tried and failed before, try again!
Important because the world is still in awe of dreamers, artists, and creative people like you. And artists, athletes, and socially conscious entrepreneurs are by far the most trusted and effective influencers on the planet! And you are part of that group! How can you not see that we are counting on you, dear creative reader, to enlighten us, inspire us, and lead us into a safer, smarter, more fulfilling future? (Actually, on second thought, I think you already see it. In fact, I think you feel it, gnawing at you deep inside your bones!)
Those who do not engage in the traditional arts might be wary of calling themselves artists. They might perceive creativity as something extraordinary or beyond their capabilities, or a calling for the special few who are born with these gifts. Fortunately, this is not the case. Creativity is not a rare ability. It is not difficult to access. Creativity is a fundamental aspect of being human. It’s our birthright. And it’s for all of us. Creativity doesn’t exclusively relate to making art. We all engage in this act on a daily basis. To create is to bring something into existence that wasn’t there before. It could be a conversation, the solution to a problem, a note to a friend, the rearrangement of furniture in a room, or a new route home to avoid a traffic jam. What you make doesn’t have to be witnessed, recorded, sold, or encased in glass for it to be a work of art. Through the ordinary state of being, we’re already creators in the most profound way, creating our experience of reality and composing the world we perceive.
However, to live as an artist is different. To live as an artist is a way of being in the world. A way of perceiving. The practice of paying attention. And you are either engaging in the practice or you’re not. It makes no sense to say you’re not good at it. It’s like saying, “I’m not good at being a monk.” You are either living as a monk or you’re not. We tend to think of the artist’s work as the output. The real work of the artist is a way of being in the world.
Important because that’s an (edited) excerpt from the NYT #1 best seller: “The Creative Act: A Way Of Being” by Rick Rubin.Rick is one of the most successful American record producers of all time, and was voted one of Time magazines 100 most influential people in the world! And it just so happens that back in the day, the entire staff at Music Connection had a front row seat as we followed Rick’s career from punk rocker, to the founder of Def Jam records, to a 9x Grammy winning producer, to the president of Columbia records, to a music industry legend! And whether you’re a professional artist, risk-taking entrepreneur, or just plotting your next move, you should check out this quick, easy reading book. Remember how Steven Pressfield’s “War Of Art” reached in and shifted our POV? This book will do the same thing. Here’s the link, let me know what you think!
For many pro artist and treps the first hurdle that often hangs us up is “What to do next?” And how we think about what we should do next makes a big difference! Just thinking about it can provoke procrastination, or tempt us to take easy street, leaving our most important goals waiting on side lines. This is when we need to “triage!”
The word “triage” is a medical term, mostly used in an emergency room: “The preliminary assessment of patients or casualties in order to determine the urgency of their need for treatment and the nature of treatment required.” And as a 33-year career nurse, my awesome wife taught me to use that term (or POV) in every area of our life, from to-do lists, to big projects, to vacation planning, even Christmas shopping for the family!
That said, here’s a rewrite of that definition to help us get past that first hurdle: “The preliminary assessment of our goals, projects and dreams, in order to determine the urgency of their need and the nature of the work required to achieve the intended result.”
Important because the most important choice we can make today is what to do next. The second most important choice is doing it. Not like a blanket rule, more like a continuous assessment.
Somewhere between the urgent disruptions, the thought-robbing distractions, our screaming to-do list, and the continuous lure of breaking news, there are openings where we can slow down, slip through the gaps, and actually find enough white space to get some creative work done. Some days, the openings are so wide we can spend long hours catching up on our most important projects and goals. Other times the days are jammed with a boatload of responsibilities or unexpected catastrophes, and there is no white space to be found anywhere.
However, what I’ve come to learn is that navigating our busy schedule is not difficult because most of us artists & treps have our own favorite software, or time-management systems that help us triage the work load of the day. But finding that time to contemplate, create and manifest our ideas and projects can be challenging. That’s because the gaps we really need to slip through are the ones between our busy thoughts, where pure creativity lives, not the ones between our busy schedules, where time-management lives.
And the only way I know to slow down my restless thoughts, just long enough to slip through the gaps and experience that creative still zone, is to sit in a private space, every day, for 10, 20, 30 minutes, close my eyes, and allow the gaps between my thoughts to open up effortlessly, so that I can slowly slide into the deep end of the pool.
Important because That simple daily routine (that I’ve been doing for nearly 40-years) has become the solid foundation under my feet, that allows me to walk through life a little slower, a little lighter and a little clearer. Not in search of enlightenment, more in search of that illusive white space.
— If struggling worked, you’d be winning the fight.
— If lots of irons in the fire worked, you’d be experiencing multiple successes.
— If setting a frantic pace worked, you’d be ahead of the pack.
— If procrastinating worked, then life itself would eventually give in to your goals & dreams.
Important because what works is slow, smart, steady progress. Not like at a snails pace, more like at a persistent one.
“I was waiting for something extraordinary to happen…but as the years wasted on nothing ever did…unless I caused it.” —Charles Bukowski
Go ahead and plan, meet, huddle, Zoom, brainstorm, scheme and strategize all you want. In the daily (more like hourly) lives of pro artists & treps (and their families and lifestyle), uncertainty still rules the roost! It causes smart business owners to have sleepless nights, talented artists to lose confidence, and seasoned professionals who stand in front of cameras, and behind mics to have upset stomachs!
Others wake up in the morning into certainty; a start time, an end time, and a paycheck. However, when an artist or entrepreneur wakes up in the morning, uncertainty is sitting impatiently at the foot of the bed with a confronting list of unfinished works and unsolved mysteries…that only patience and creativity can solve.
And while it’s certainly true that uncertainty will keep your fans, clients and customers, curious and coming back for more, it is also nevertheless true that the predictability of certainty will often bore fans, clients and customers into moving on…in search of something more curious and uncertain.
Important because so much we can learn from uncertainty, and so much we already know about certainty.
Too often we assume that our POV of a project or situation must be true. Therefore, we take what we assume is the appropriate action based on that assumption. Huh?
Assumptions, especially in our creative career and entrepreneurial lifestyle, are a very dangerous thing to hang your hat on. Why? Because we should never forget that we are a “people” industry, and every project is a unique conversation between buyer and seller, drummer and bandleader, actor and director, writer and producer, producer and corporate, etc.. Plus, as independent entrepreneurs, we live and work in a unique creative culture where no deal goes down like any other, no original project is planned with a templet, and every agreement can be negotiated and written in an unlimited number of ways. No other industry on the planet operates this way! So to say that “this time” is the same as “last time” is a false assumption. That’s why I get frustrated when people say things like: “oh well, that’s just the way the music business works.” Or, “that’s just the way it is in television.” Or, “He must be thinking or feeling this way, because that happened to him.”
Important because here’s a reminder: Assumption is the ball ‘n chain that slows the progress of our goals ‘n dreams to a crawl.
The challenging times we live in are inextricably coupled with a profound opportunity that awaits us in the coming year, to use our multiple creative talents to not only entertain, but to inspire, motivate and reach out and make a difference. And now, more than ever, we need to hear your truth, roused from the depths of your soul and passionately expressed in your music, writing, performing, publishing, directing, producing, teaching and business.
Important because now more than ever, on the brink of a new year, opportunity is starring at us right in the face, waiting for us to drum up the courage to make a move. And if we flinch, it could all be a bit of a waste.
My Muse is on a mission and nothing will stop it! It doesn’t care if I need a break, doesn’t mind if I’m in dire straights, could give a hoot if I’m having a bad day, and laughs when I attempt to ignore it. Like the terminator with only one, ruthless, unstoppable objective, the mission of my Muse is to feed me a non-stop, 24/7, continuous, streaming download of fresh ideas, projects, bits & pieces of abstract visions, original music, spontaneous bursts of inspiration, and bright light bulbs over my head! It even invades my dreams, where I wake up in the middle of the night and I must record a foggy idea before I lose it! It has no feelings, no emotions, no empathy or compassion, and actually could care less if I take one of its great ideas and run with it. It’s only job is to deliver the goods!
Important because on the one hand, I often wish there was a switch to turn off the download. On the other hand, I realize that my Muse (or my creative spirit) has been the one constant in my life since I was a kid, and that it has always pointed me in the direction to the exact spot I’m standing in right now! Not like a mythical guide, more like an intuitive one.
I’m writing to you from inside the belly of a whale. It’s dark in here and very cold. However, there is an occasional bright ray of light that shine’s through the blow hole every time the giant mammal takes a breath. Fortunately, that light shines in just when I need it most.
I can hear friends and family on the outside shouting: “How are you?” “Do you need anything?” “What can we do for you?” and they mean it! However, that puts the responsibility on me to come up with an appropriate answer which I simply do not have. Meanwhile, there are a few enlightened ones who are willing to take on that responsibility, and simply observe and notice what’s wanted and needed, and just provide it. And while I acknowledge the first group for their genuine, heartfelt, loving generosity, I admire the second group for their insightful wisdom to bypass protocol, follow their intuition, and simply act.
I started looking through my past blogs searching for clues to escape this darkness. Turns out there is no escape, there is only turning up the light, which as we all know will immediately eradicate the darkness. The one blog I found helpful is from 2019 When You Forget Who You Are, I hope it reminds you too!
Although this is the darkest time I have ever experienced in my life, intellectually and confidently I know that George was right when he said “All Things Must Pass,” and I have no doubt that I will eventually follow the light and find my way out of this whale-size darkness. However, I’m in no hurry.
Important because my awesome, angel, soulmate wife of 30 blissful years, gently, softly, and peacefully passed away recently, from complications due to a lifetime of type 1 diabetes. And after eleven years of intimately interacting with YOU via this blog, it just feels right to share that with you. Nancy was a 35-year career nurse at UCLA, and she was also an abstract expressionist artist in both painting and collage. If you’re interested, here’s her website. Thanks for listening my dear reader, YOU are a bright shinning light in my life.
When you’ve been blindsided, even if you saw it coming…or when push comes to shove and you need to make an impossible decision…or when you’re up against the ropes and getting pummeled…you’re either John Wayne or Don Knotts. You’re either Meryl Streep or Ethel Merman. There is no middle ground!
Important because when someone suddenly tosses you a hot potato and expects you to react, you’re either Superman or just plain o’l clumsy Clark Kent, because Mr. In-between is nowhere to be found. You either take the high road, or end up in a sinkhole.