Yesterday, the sighting of yet another decorated vehicle was my great thing. An older van was covered with gargoyle and dragon-type heads that were about the size of a mastiff or maybe as big as a Sasquatch head. Everything was covered with a rather sinister brown-copper paint. It would have been rather frightening if it wasn’t so weird. It was weird enough to be funny. I like funny. I often like weird but scary. . . not so much. Secretly, I’m an incredible chicken.
Today I felt like a chicken when it was necessary to step up to the unpleasant. Great things were very elusive. The unpleasant was blocking my view. This wasn’t how this was supposed to work. Great things were supposed to keep happening because I was looking for them. My attention was to participate in the manifestation. Apparently, I’m not that powerful.
After doing a bit of what I call “creative whining” to my husband, I realized that some days the unpleasant is determined to try and take center stage. Whether or not I continue to focus on it is my choice. This is not an easy one.
Yesterday while reading a book about adaptability, I saw one of my pet theories. Apparently some psychologists have studied human tendency to focus on the negative and via research have come up with the same conclusion I did by my act of creative guessing. Seeing the negative comes naturally because it is link to a very primitive survival mechanism in which we as humans need to be on the look out for the negative in our world because our lives depended on it. Since we are no longer in danger of being eaten by lions, tigers and bears in the numbers we once were this survival mechanism sometimes runs amok. We focus on the negative at great detriment to our own psychological well being. We get stuck being aware of all the things that could go wrong, have gone wrong or might go wrong.
I get stuck very easily. I’m a master, a regular Yoda of the Morass. I wax poetic while not doing anything other than waxing poetic. Poor, unappreciated, locked in an undiscovered life. . .yada, yada, yada. Appreciation and discovery seem nice but they really aren’t necessary. Meaning and satisfaction have to come from within in order to really be experienced. Adulation, recognition don’t mean a thing if in our solitary moments we have not discovered our intrinsic value and worth.
So today, in between the unpleasant, I took a quiet moment or two and rested in that intrinsic worth. When I first came up with the idea, I intended it to be an escape from the unpleasant. “All right negative thinking. I’ll show you.”
When you stop and rest in intrinsic value, competition and one-up-man-ship disappear. At the center of my true worth and value, it was blessedly quiet. The inner noise of my thoughts became a distant hum in the background.
“Hmm.” I thought. I bet this is where God lives. This is where I would live if I were God.”
Silence answered me but that was enough.
Quickly, the chaos of my Wednesday came rushing back. As much as I would like to have had a mystical conversion, to be knocked off a horse and blinded by the light, what I received was a few moments of stillness. This stillness was very small. It didn’t magically convert my day into something wonderful. Parts of my day still stunk.
It’s possible that the moment of stillness was entirely of my own creation. Wishful thinking and a desire to escape may have made it what it was. I choose to think of it as my one great thing for today because it really was.