Beyond the upgrade, I think airing your mud is also the only way to stop buying your own bullshit. See, we need other people to help us spot our bullshit beliefs. And once they’re identified, we also need a reason to change. If your only motivation to update your internal OS is your own long-term benefit, I wish you luck. It sucks, but we’re just not wired to value our future selves anywhere near as highly as we value our present comfort.
“I think that in keeping your options open, in refusing to commit to things—career paths, relationships, anything— there is that feeling, isn’t there? that you retain the control because you haven’t allowed yourself to be pinned down to enter your life completely. You’re holding back, you could walk away from anything at any moment. And, it feels like your maintaining the control of the situation but because time just keeps on marching on, if you do that for very long you end up using up large chunks of your life you never get back just holding back from life. So, burning bridges, making irreversible commitments is a counter force to that because it acknowledges your limitations, it says I only have one life to live, it says At some point I have to go all in on something, it sacrifices that lovely feeling of being in control because you haven’t committed to anything. And what you get in return is to enter more fully into the real experience of being alive while you still are.”
~ Oliver Burkeman
“But then the second thing he said was, ‘You are interconnected to everyone, because the world doesn’t work without everyone.’ You may think that you’re alone, but you’re never actually alone. This was really important because at a very young age that made me understand the importance of collectivity, and that we can’t do anything alone that’s worth it. Everything worthwhile is done with other people. So that became the soundtrack in my head.”
I’ve been rereading your story. I think it’s about me in a way that might not be flattering, but that’s okay. We dream and dream of being seen as we really are and then finally someone looks at us and sees us truly and we fail to measure up. Anyway: story received, story included. You looked at me long enough to see something mysterious under all the gruff and bluster. Sometimes you get so close to someone you end up on the other side of them.
| Richard Siken
I learned that just beneath the surface there’s another world, and still different worlds as you dig deeper. I knew it as a kid, but I couldn’t find the proof. It was just a feeling. There is goodness in blue skies and flowers, but another force - a wild pain and decay - also accompanies everything.
∆ David Lynch
Spirituality is about honoring the human journey, loving it, and living it in all its wonder and tragedy. There is nothing really “supernatural” about love and suffering. It is completely natural, taking us through the deep interplay of death and life, surrender and forgiveness, in all their basic and foundational manifestations. “God comes to you disguised as your life,” as my friend Paula D’Arcy says so well. Who would have thought? I was told it was about going to church.
Rohr, Richard. The Universal Christ (p. 212). The Crown Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.
When stumped by a lifechoice, choose “enlargement” over happiness. I’m indebted to the Jungian therapist for the insight that major personal decisions should be made not by asking, “Will this make me happy?”, but “Will this choice enlarge me or diminish me?”
There will always be too much to do – and this realisation is liberating. The only viable solution is to make a shift: from a life spent trying not to neglect anything, to one spent proactively and consciously choosing what to neglect, in favour of what matters most.
It was a failure of my imagination that made me keep leaving people. All I could see in the world were beginnings and endings: moments to survive, record, and, once recorded, safely forget. I knew I was getting somewhere when I began losing interest in the beginnings and the ends of things. Short tragic love stories that had once interested me no longer did. What interested me was the kind of love to which the person dedicates herself for so long, she no longer remembers quite how it began.
| Sarah Manguso, Ongoingness