I hear that voice echoing from the past, every second, fast, oh, how long will this last?
When a moment feels like an eternity, we hold tight, and try to let go of the fright we feel, yet at times, we hold too close to heart, and it can feel as if we’re falling apart.
Seams coming undone, once tethered together, now bursting with imagination and dread in this very cold weather.
Inside the drama’s milieux, perspective is hard to find, as we run after feelings that are a part of another place and time.
Remember, then, as thought precedes feeling, and you know that you are truly dreaming, watch, listen, and observe the scene, instead of entering into it with every piece of your being.
Perspective can be regained as we learn more about ourselves inside the dance, and begin to master the waves of our second chance.
One, two, three, just like that, is how they are feeling. Come and gone in an instant, when we slow down and let go of our resistance.
Be with all that comes your way, many a wise one will say. Nay, love all that comes your way, because it is part and parcel of the entire play. Choose wisely then, my friend, for on your life it doth depend.
Alright, another week closer to this year’s end, and entering deeper into winter, which, for where I currently live, means more, well, a ton more rain to be accurate. Whereas, I didn’t grow up in a very rainy area, Los Angeles is, of course, known for sun most of the time, I am more comfortable with the rainy weather these days.
And, yes, writing did occur this week, and here is what that looked like.
One of my goals this week was to get, The Leadership Series Part 2.5: Why Developing the Self is Always the First Step in Leadership completed, and that did not happen. Next week. Yes, so what about next week? Let’s take a look.
In the poetry realm, I have a few ideas. I am thinking about two poems right now, one on flow, and one on force, which will be fun. And, then the aforementioned leadership article will be a focus next week, as will another entry in the social construction series. I’m not sure about the latter just yet. Meaning, the topic. Not sure.
I’ve also got a couple of ideas about creating vision, and managing the gap between your current reality and your future projected reality, or the real and ideal in leadership terms. Alright, how about reading. Sure, let’s go.
It is a very Haruki Murakami type book, which means? That, so far, it is awesome. Of course, it starts with a prologue, and the main character is painting a portrait of a client that has no face, or rather has a face of mist. And then?
Then Murakami begins to create the world you’ll be entering into, all of the typical trials and tribulations and the emotional breakdowns and breakthroughs that follow for the main character. I’ve only read about 60 pages, and Murakami has already covered a lot of ground.
I am looking forward to discussing what I’ve read thus far with the remote book club tonight. How about listening? A new entry topic this week. Ready? Good. Here we go.
Though podcasts have been around for well over 25 years, I didn’t start listening to podcasts until about 5 years ago. I know, I know, I am now playing catch up. Fun!
Here are a couple of podcasts, which you may not have heard of, and are very good.
Alright, so I have a soft spot for the television show the office. Fun. And, an Oral History of the Office does a great job recounting just how hard it was to get that show on the air in the United States. A very interesting and entertaining podcast.
Louder Than A Riot was one that I stumbled onto, as I listen to most of my music on Spotify, and I caught an ad about the new podcast. Wow. The podcast traces systematic and structural racism in this county in regard to hip-hop. A caution. The episodes are raw and explicit. The topics they cover are so important, and the two hosts, Rodney Carmichael and Sidney Madden, are stellar.
Resistance is one I just found this past week, and it traces systematic and structural racism in the United States through the lens of protesters all across the country. I’ve listened to most of the episodes already, and they are well done. Again, the host, Saidu Tejan Thomas Jr., does a fantastic job. This podcast is also raw and explicit.
Alright, that was fun. I recommend all three. How about stimulation? Yep, here we go.
It has occurred to me off and on over the past several weeks, and I’m sure I’ve written about it, that stimulation is something that I monitor. Important. Why?
Because when we are constantly stimulated with work, computer screens, phones, television, even conversation, we are depleting our vital energies. And? That’s oaky, we just need to be aware that replenishment is needed and necessary.
What can we do? Well, there are many things. All of which we have discussed in previous posts. My favorites? Yep, there are two that I consider paramount.
So important. Both meditation and walking get me away from all stimulation, and, in a way, create a reset of sorts. Simply meaning, they restore my energy levels. Oh, and there is one more. Naps. I take several naps now each week. Super refreshing.
What we do to get our quiet and reenergizing time matters less than we get it. That I get it, and that you get it. So?
If you’re not getting enough replenishment time for yourself, make sure to create that time. It can start with simply leaving the computer station, or setting the phone down, and walking out the door for a walk. Really important.
Alright, that’s all for this week.
I hope you all have a wonderful holiday and a lovely remainder of 2020.
What is the difference between force and flow; and, what do they have to do with persistence? An important distinction, and question. What do you think? When you think of force, do you think of persistence? You might. Many people do.
However, in this article we will pull force and persistence apart, so we can see how being in the flow is actually more solidly connected to persistence. Ready? Excellent, let’s go.
Force and Resistance
People often confound force as being persistent. Yet, when you think about force, what comes to mind? Is it flexibility and adaptability? Probably not. Yet, we continue to think about persistence as the ability to withstand our environment. Not so.
When you look at those things that are persistent, they are working with the environment, not against it. Important. Imagine a tree sprout that makes its way through a crack in an asphalt blacktop.
That sprout is not resisting its environment, it is using the environment to its advantage. Flexibility and adaptability create persistence, not force.
When we use force, we are resisting that which we are confronted with. The lack of flexibility and adaptability is resistance. And, you may persist for a little while by using force, however, you will not stand the test of time. Persistence over time is not possible when we use force. Why?
Because when we apply force to situations and events, we are basically refusing to accept our current reality. And, when we are in denial about our current reality, we are living in resistance.
What to do?
Flow and Persistence
We can recognize and acknowledge that when we are resisting our environment and current reality, we are being resistant. That is first. Once we are aware, we can shift our focus and attention to accepting our environment and current reality for what it is. It just is. That’s all.
And, you don’t get a demerit for being resistant. We are all, at times, resistant. It is part of being a human being. It’s okay. Really feel that. It is okay. Please remember that. Why?
Because when we get frustrated and upset about being resistant, we will use more force. We will try to force a reality to appear that we want more than the current reality. Happens all the time. Why is this an issue?
Because, when we expound that much energy on resisting, and are forcing, we will typically find that we don’t feel all that well. Maybe we aren’t sleeping well. Or, we are feeling even more frustrated and upset. Not helpful. And, not sustainable. Not over time.
Yet, when we go with the flow, or are flexible and adaptable to our environment and current reality, we can continue to create the reality we want to manifest. And, we can do that with much less mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual effort.
We can actually get more out of the reality we are living in, and can be more creative than we can if we continue to resist and use force. Really.
Can you think of a practical example of how these conceptual ideas play out? I’m sure you can. For now, let me give you an example from my life.
I work in education. And, the work I do involves experiential learning. Think the arts, fitness, professional and personal development, and small business development.
Well, we typically offer about 300 in-person classes a term. Since COVID-19, however, we’ve reduced those offerings to 50 remote classes this past spring, and about 80 remote classes this summer. A big difference.
And, we increased the offerings for summer, because I tasked the team with creating more classes, and then even more classes for fall.
However, what I missed, and missed big, was that the community need wasn’t offering more and more classes.
That was the old business model. What was I doing? Inadvertently, I was resisting the current reality. Yep. Not intentionally, not at all.
Often we resist our current reality out of habit, or a deep desire to, as we’ve discussed, create the reality we deeply want – resistance. What happened?
Well, I had a huge insight as I was working through all of the summer classes we were going to have to cancel. What was that insight?
I was actively resisting and trying to force an old way of doing things onto a totally unrelated and new context. That context, the current reality, where the old model doesn’t fit.
Once I was aware, I began to create plans with the team of focusing on core classes, and using the freed up time to create new ways to engage the community. A big deal. Phew. Was a huge insight.
Alright, so we’ve covered the concepts of force and flow and also looked at a practical example. And now, you might be wondering what you can do to move from force and into the flow?
Notice when you are resistant – Don’t judge yourself, or be hard on yourself. It is normal to be resistant at times.
When you are aware, you can shift from resistance to acceptance – Inside of this shift, you will create more flexibility and adaptability, as you begin to accept your current reality.
And, once you are in acceptance, you can shift to persistence – A state that allows you to be open, flexible, and adaptable in a sustainable way. In the flow. Accepting what comes, and creating from inside of what is there. Right in front of you.
Alright. I’ve written several pieces on persistence this week. I am more present to the need for persistence as all of us, all of humanity, continue to wonder. Wonder about when life will return to some sense of “normalcy.”
I do believe that what we once knew as normal is gone forevermore. When will there be a new normal?
Don’t know. I do know that the need to be flexible, adaptable, and have the ability to create within high-levels of change has never been more needed than today.
Well, then, together we can wait and watch. Notice when we are forcing situations. And, when we notice force, we can shift our attention and focus to acceptance, which is where we will all find the flow.