Now I don’t know how spiritual you may be but please don’t think this is necessarily a spiritual post . . . it’s just what’s been going on in my mind which has translated into life. I hope it helps you overall if not at least help you realize some things concerning your own life. Let me start off by saying that the mind is a muscle . . . and like muscles it must be worked. And that’s whatEVER you set your mind to do. If you’re anything like me you have periods (usually like 2-5 days) where you’re extremely focused on something, success, love, accomplishing some abstract mini goal, or whatever. Then when you break these tasks into smaller goals you get lost in the details. It’s like of like when I’m drawing, I start off sketching the general shapes and I’m so pleased because I love the progress, it’s a beautiful and simple stage. But then as I start zeroing in on certain details of the drawing I take a broader view of if and realize the details in the section I was just working on doesn’t look quite right.
It frustrates me so either I erase and get back to the overall concept and rework or I get fed up with it and put it down for later chalking it up to “artist’s block” or some bullshit excuse. This is like sometimes I find life. I admit that. I map out the general concept on those really focused days then start working in the different sections and get lost in the minute details of that part of my life that the general goal gets lost somewhat. Then I get frustrated and take a few days off where my productivity isn’t as high as it should be and chalk it up to sulking. This type of condition has prevented me from reaching certain peace of mind in situations. I The fact that I admit this means I’m aware of it obviously so what do I do about it? What do you do when you have that general idea of what you want out of life then get lost in the tedious details? Details like dealing with ignorant folks that seem to be wandering through life like zombies and can’t relate to ANY form of intellectual thought from another human being. Details like paperwork, contracts, learning shit you may have to know but are bored while you’re learning it. Details like having to deal with tasks totally unrelated to the overall concept you have of your life.
I think this directly relates to your “inner child” or your sense of wonder about the world that MAKES you come up with the concept of your life or what it should be. The everyday tedious things especially in adult life seem to try to shrink your concept of life and lock you in a left brain prison almost. For a lot of people this works, especially people who aren’t necessarily artistically inclined and less sensitive to this . . . or at least that’s been my experience. Remember when you were a child before this process of left brain trapping started really affecting you? The living room could have been the whole world and you would have found enough to do there to last you a lifetime. There were less seemingly pointless tasks pulling you away from what you really wanted to do. Now we’ve become completely different people in adulthood. Everything’s serious now, people’s opinions count, life has more valley’s than mountaintops . . . or is it how we’re viewing the world. Stephen Covey said it’s all about paradigms, if you keep that general concept of what you want your life to look like in the NOW it’s a start to changing your whole state. Here’s what works for me when I go through these “slumps” for lack of a better word.
Now mind you I’ve really had to generate my own triggers and put forth mental effort which sometimes is harder than physical effort into something, let’s be honest, especially with keeping your life in perspective. The minor details in life sometimes suck the inspiration out of me, then comes artist block, then comes an emotionless state where life just is. I think that’s plain old BEING UNGRATEFUL. Your triggers for getting back in tune with your concept of your life may be different from mine but I can ASSURE you sequences of events in your life will correspond with you trying to get back in touch with yourself. First of all since the beginning issue is being ungrateful we have to start there. YOU’RE ALIVE! I mean holy SHIT that’s a miracle in itself. You live, you breathe, you experience, you love, you laugh . . . are those not tied to emotions that let you know how alive you are? People around you can tell when you’re just an emotionless, lifeless, uninspired blob rolling around reacting to one event then the next. You may call it being depressed or what have you but people sense it and either you attract like people at the time or the LIVE people who ARE in touch don’t want to bother with you until you get right. Just start APPRECIATING stuff . . . for the hell of it. What people call “prayer” or “meditation” is basically an exercise in thought. Being grateful starts there. Now as you begin to stretch your mental muscle to get out of this rut you feel resistance. “Wait, I’m PUSHING myself to be grateful for some of the same stuff I see everyday? Not going to work!” But keep pushing.
I run 2 miles every morning to reflect and I can tell you the mental exercise I get while I’m running almost outdoes the physical exercise in terms of benefits. Next is you want to acknowledge how little time you have on earth . . . that’s a HUGE one. EVERYday has to count in contributing to your overall concept of life . . . EVERY single day, pointless tasks or not. Not everybody wants to deal with their mortality because either A. the thought of it brings pain and fear or B. it’s just not nice to think about . . . but all in all you MUST think of this and accept it even if you feel angst towards it because it’ll instantly remind you of the pleasure you now feel you MUST experience in the here and now that’ll make you at peace with the fact one day your going to go. Show me a society that deals with death with fear and loathing and I’ll show you a society of ungrateful drones that have little to no respect for life. You can’t experience joy without pain. The great Yin and Yang. Balance of life and death. You must accept this if you’re to shake yourself of this day-to-day emotionless state where you’ve lost your concept of life. Another one of my triggers is recognizing that I MUST be remembered long after I’m gone . . . through my legacy and art. It has nothing to do with ego, it has to do with the contribution towards the enrichment of other people’s lives . . . even after I’m gone. This DEFINITELY helps realign you with your concept of your life.
If you DON’T want to set a legacy and be remembered for your work, helping others then something is just plain wrong with you and I’d ask you to leave my blog immediately. I’m building a legacy to leave behind with my art and my showing young artists how to fish. I’m wanting to do more social commentary through my art which I feel is going to be the biggest part of my legacy. Everyday details simply cannot stand in the way of this overall picture. Now there are MANY tedious tasks you face day in and day out that seem to drown you and knock you out of focus of where you’re trying to steer your life but take these triggers I’ve mentioned and use them . . . seriously. If it’s a certain song that puts you in touch with your soul . . . or a movie, or just taking the long way home from work just to fix your mind on these methods . . . you’ve GOT to keep in touch with the concept of your life. Call it taking a step back and looking at the broad picture. Not only must you do this . . . but you must do this NOW. Time won’t stop for you and these things called a life . . . well ya only get one as far as we know soooooo GET your mind into shape people!