Thursday Thought #66: Our Inner Critic

By | Thursday Thought, Uncategorized | No Comments

The inner critic is always there. A homunculus hanging out in the hardest to reach caverns of our mind constantly trumpeting the siren song of inadequacy. Reminding us that someone else can do it better, someone else can get there faster, someone else can be it easier. The homunculus is born from the indoctrination of the belief that the tallest blade of grass always gets cut down: that if we stand out, we risk the danger of envy or isolation. So if someone else does not cut us down, we serves the scythe ourselves. But is this true? If it is, why do we so often look longingly at the blades shining brightly in piercing sun — getting a view of the world we so desperately wish for ourselves? Why do we wish to silence the negative voice? Quieting the homunculus is not about going to battle with it. It’s about acknowledgement. It’s about a acknowledging the fact that it’s there for a reason: often doing its faithful job to protect us from pain or anguish. For it’s often not fear itself that arrests us, but rather the pain — or potential pain — of shame. Shame is the greatest saboteur of creativity. Unlike anger or sadness, it cannot be transposed. It is simply immobilizing. So overcoming shame means removing the conditions for its arrival. This requires trust. It requires a trust in ourselves in knowing that we only have to reveal as much of ourselves or our work as we are willing to. If we trust in ourselves to consciously expand that willingness incrementally — just one extra inch, or one extra micrometer — then those micro meters accumulate into miles and those miles converge into a bridge to a braver self. But this is some of the hardest,…

Read More

Thursday Thought #65: The Power of Micro Hurts

By | Self, Thursday Thought | No Comments

(note: Last week’s Thursday Though was on the micro. And this week, I look to continue to explore the shift and power of the imperceptible and seemingly insignificant). A psychologist walked around a room while teaching stress management to an audience. As she raised a glass of water, everyone expected they’d be asked the “half empty or half full” question. Instead, with a smile on her face, she inquired: “How heavy is this glass of water?” Answers called out ranged from 8 oz. to 20 oz. She replied, “The absolute weight doesn’t matter. It depends on how long I hold it. If I hold it for a minute, it’s not a problem. If I hold it for an hour, I’ll have an ache in my arm. If I hold it for a day, my arm will feel numb and paralyzed. In each case, the weight of the glass doesn’t change, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes.” She continued, “The stresses and worries in life are like that glass of water. Think about them for a while and nothing happens. Think about them a bit longer and they begin to hurt. And if you think about them all day long, you will feel paralyzed – incapable of doing anything.” It’s important to remember to let go of your stresses. As early in the evening as you can, put all your burdens down. Don’t carry them through the evening and into the night. Remember to put the glass down. I wish we would mind the micro hurts more often. We give great attention and restorative energy to the large, heavy traumatic experiences that many of us have had. But what of the small hurts? The side comments, or rejections, or moments of being made to feel small? It’s…

Read More

Thursday Thought #64: One Tiny Shift

By | Thursday Thought | No Comments

If you change the degree at which you launch an object by just one, you will shift its entire trajectory.  One change in code in DNA can disrupt the functioning of an entire organism. The one greatest threat to the domain of man is the virus. We’re so often focused on making waves or shaking the Earth. But big movements are created by seismic micro shifts. One of my favorite aspects of language is the prevalence of the misquotation of idiomatic expressions. In this case, one that is immensely applicable, and often uttered, is that “The devil is in the details.” But how the expression originally went was: “God is in the details.” The meaning got twisted in reversed somewhere in the continuous flows of  the river of time. But this feels a lot more true of the world. When we look at Fibonacci sequences or the beautifully intricate geometry of leaves, of the amazing mycological ecosystems of mushrooms that are made up of these tiny seemingly sporadic organisms, we see Mother Nature minding every tiny detail. When we think about an entire ecosystem, with tiny bees pollinating one flower at a time and steadily doing their noble work, and flowers drawing on the nutrients from above and below to in turn provide nutrients to the animals in their ecosystem, we see the mighty reduced to the minimal. And so it goes, so on and so forth. But if were to remove one simple component of that equation, the mighty bee, then the entire eco system falls apart. Something so seemingly small, so seemingly trivial on the surface, represents the lynchpin of this very powerful system. In this same way, every massive movement  machine or mammal is made up of its rather small and seemingly insignificant component parts. And so…

Read More