After a summer of such exhaustion (yes I am aware that it is not yet over), I have had a wake up call. An internal call to action. For me these come regularly since I often find myself lost on the path, gazing at flowers, and lose interest in the moving on. I am lucky that I have within some kind of ebbing and flowing motivation that every so often will kick me in the ass and move me forward. I pray that you dear reader have such a self sustaining mechanism as well.
There is perhaps an origin point for my motivations though. In my early years in college, particularly in West Ga. where I learned a great deal about existential philosophy and post modern psychology there were many iterations of this idea of mortality. Life has a limit and it is these few years of wonder that we are given. At the time, such a statement was frightening as all the great teachers and philosophers suggested we live each day like it is our last. When I do that, I fall to pieces. There is no way I can live today as if it is my last. I would be hunting down every dream and fantasy that ever reared its head toward me. So I wrestled with what a measured response to such an idea would be. How do you moderately live as if this is the last day.
This moved me more towards a philosophy of hedonism. The grand pursuit becomes pleasure in the moment, seeking out joy in all its hidden corners. So there was a rallying cry towards self fulfillment. But this too fell flat since it incorporated no far reaching goals, no journey or quest to set the heading of my compass.
I slept! Not an inactive sleep, I gnashed my teeth over ontology and religion, spirituality and mythology, but even in so doing I slept. My wake up call came when Borders closed the door on my management trek. I immediately went forth and made many sweeping life changes; started jobs in counseling, and applied to Saybrook University. It is now 3-4 years later and the changes have been impressive (at least to me).
I now am doing community therapy with families and children. Not something I ever in my dreams expected to be working on. I am working (rather slowly) on my PhD. I am on a healing and growth path that forces me to daily consider the bumps and turns in my life. I find I am developing a reverence for myself. A forgiveness from all of my personal wrongs is going on. I compare myself to the outside parade of characters, but when it comes down to it, pleasing myself and making the world a better place for others is the most important thing I work on.
Now, I am being pulled along again by the mighty force of times winds. A ship on a glassy sea can be pretty but eventually the crew and captain grow weary. Infighting begins, and sailing forward becomes the only option. (A voice inside my head calls out- Ummm do you think you can mix anymore metaphors for us here. It was a sarcastic voice).
The summer was a respite from all things push. I worked my two jobs, usually hitting 50-60 hours of work and driving per week. Over the course of a year I put 40,000 miles on the Honda…holy sheep shit, 40,000 miles. Anyway, when I got home from a day of work, I wrote my clinical notes and the whole idea of self motivating to school or other personal goals felt overwhelming. I did what any overwhelmed child would do, I played video games, I watched Star Trek and Doctor Who, I read comics, I watched the tweets of favorite celebrities, I played games with friends, and saw a ton of blockbuster movies all in the name of trying to give myself mercy and respite from the onslaught of my personal goals. However, the other day I woke up with a plan.
I was motivated to make changes. Perhaps the stillness of the moment got too quiet for me to handle, perhaps it was the internal voice that asked me not to give up on the things I want. “Give me 20 years of hard work” it said. Immediately I joined the YMCA, and began studying therapy techniques daily. It is all well and good to get a degree in psychology but practice is quite another thing. That was 2 weeks ago. The motor has been revving, the engines are ready. So this week, I scheduled into my already busy schedule, study time and writing time because these are the things that will move the ship forward. I am writing all of this here to spread this word of my motivation to the people who care about me. I have great difficulty holding myself accountable to my own goals and wishes. I am asking each of you dear people who have made it this far in my blog, to help me celebrate my successes, motivate me when you see me at a loss, and remind me- “20 years of hard work”.
This week, I will write 3-5 pages of essay for my essay on improvisation. I will begin recruiting musicians for my research project, and I will write 3 blogs (to stretch my writing muscles). I will continue to study therapy daily for 30 minutes. I will go to the gym every other day. I will do everything in my power to stay awake and pace myself to reach my goals.