Monday, March 21, 2016

Monday Mantra: Get Out of Your Own Way

mantra is a sound, syllable, word, or group of words that is considered capable of "creating transformation".

Every Monday I will post a new thought, idea, or focus for the week. When you need a breather from life, when you need a little inspiration, or when you're about to jump over the conference table and strangle your co-worker, remember the mantra.

Monday Mantra: Get out of your own way
Creative Angel
When I was little, there was a debate going around with parents as to whether or not violent video games were mentally, and somewhat emotionally, damaging to kids. I used to think that was preposterous, but I've recently realized that for me, as an adult, technology as a whole is sometimes too much for me to handle. Too much noise, too much happening, too much drama, too much "reality." I get too easily sucked in or too easily distracted. I would say that it's even significantly impacted my creativity. But, being an adult, I have the power to put my phone down, turn off the TV, and walk away from the computer. I just don't. Instead, I keep Getting in My Own Way.

Getting in Your Own Way is nothing new. We all do it, we just don't all see it. For instance, how many times have you looked at a friend/family member's relationship situation and thought "Why are they still dating that horrible person?" For you, it's obvious. That "horrible person" has X, Y, and Z wrong with them, but your friend/family member is blind to it. That's because it's often far easier to see how other people are holding themselves back vs. how we're doing it to ourselves. Looking inward is far scarier, far more difficult, but also far more important than you might realize.

In my particular case, technology is the thing I keep tripping over. Now, I realize each and every one of us has brains that work in different ways. The Fiance, for instance, gets powered up by being plugged in. I, on the other hand, start shutting down. I've found that the thinking time I used to have has diminished because I am almost always involved in some kind of technology. I work on a computer all the live-long day. I have my cell phone with me at all times because, well, who knows when that zombie outbreak could occur, right? And don't even get me started on all of the ridiculously entertaining TV shows these days. Really, I almost have no chance whatsoever, you creative writing geniuses, you!

What my brain needs is quiet. It needs a bunch of nothing to recharge. It quite literally needs a break from looking at things, listening to things, focusing on things. Even going for a walk is almost too much because I'm thinking, I'm working in a sense; I'm reaching a goal, a destination. My brain really, truly needs nothing. So, recently I've been giving it that free-of-anything-and-everything time, and it has been amazing.

The other night I took the furry babies outside, plopped myself on a chair, and did not one doggone thing. I didn't read, I left the phone in the house, I didn't even listen to music. I just sat outside, musing at the world, listening to my internal thoughts, many of which I realized I'd been ignoring. Since then three things have happened:

1. Every single day I wait (im)patiently until I can have my Nothing Time. I crave it. It's the thing I look forward to the most. It's the thing I can't wait for. It's the thing I need to make me feel like me.
2. My creativity has been restoring itself. I have so many thoughts and poems and words flowing out of me, it's as if I've released a dam of ideas that were blocked by TVs, cell phones, and computers.
3. I started thinking about my gramma and how much I miss her all the ever-loving-time. How I push her out my mind, purposely avoiding thoughts about her because of the pain. I realized there are heartaches from my past that I thought I'd resolved, but clearly hadn't.

I'm getting out of my way.

It's wonderful.

If you happen to be chasing something, but repeatedly failing to catch it - a book you want to write, a degree you wish you had, a significant other of quality and worth - I suggest you examine your life and really look at what might be holding you back. Maybe, it has nothing to do with you at all. But maybe, just maybe, it does. 

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