On the continuing subject of my pending-but-not-really-cuz-it’s-way-more-complicated-and-a-lot-less-scary-than-that unemployment, I’ve come up with a few more “Aha!”s.
Remember me blogging recently about noticing that the answers show up when I stop thinking — that when I relax my thoughts and let go of distractions, I gain access to the clear mind that lets me see what’s next?
Well, I sat with that for awhile… chilled out and took a vacation from some of my distraction habits, hoping to gain access to that nice clear mind that would help me aim my income-hunting efforts in the Right Direction. And you know what happened?
I realized I was mixing up my “clear serene reflection pond mind” with my “crazy idea-generating waterfall mind.” I had lost touch with both and, though I didn’t know it, I was actually more interested in the latter. I love that waterfall. I missed it.
It’s back now.
A hard truth confronted me as soon as I went swimming, and I haven’t quite finished wrestling with it yet: This part of me that revels in constantly generating new, creative ideas is often in conflict with (what I would call) my more conservative side — the side of me that wants to make a stable living, that doesn’t want my friends and family to worry about me, and that wants to be reliable.
It’s a pretty serious conflict — the kind that takes no prisoners. And somehow, whenever this conflict goes to blows, the conservative side wins and the creative side shuts down.
This is because the conservative side has a secret weapon. All it has to do is call my creative side “crazy,” and the battle is over.
Those are labels we put on things we don’t take seriously — things we want to diminish and push out of the way. They’re words we use to describe people we don’t want to get to know, who are different from us in ways that make us uncomfortable. They’re some of the words I grew up applying to myself to account for my differences. Apparently I still use them. Affectionately, sometimes. But often.
Screw it. It’s time to feed the freak.
I think what I’m looking at is an internal power balance. My conservative side is necessary for survival. My creative side, technically, isn’t (although my quality of life standards would beg to differ with that). Somehow, now, my conservative side has gotten all up on a high horse about its Status of Necessity, and my creative side doesn’t stand a chance against that kind of arrogance.
I want to submit an alternate structure.
What if my powerful conservative side considered honoring my creative side as a source of wisdom and inspiration? What if my creative side took up a post of leadership and offered to gently (and probably slowly) guide the rest of me into more experimental directions?
This might seem like a counter-intuitive comparison to make, but what I’m describing feels a lot like trying to get powerful income-earning adults and high-energy invincible youth to honor retirees and seniors.
Am I making any sense?
Maybe I’m just crazy.
But I think there are answers here.