Over the last eight months I decided to take a closer inspection of my personal creative process. A logical and systematic study of the methodology and symptoms of each of the passages I work through, in correlation with creative patterns I had already ascertained. Each time I decide what I want to achieve next, I go through this process. We all live an emotional line which waves and dips, yet I feel compelled to share my recognition of some of the more difficult side to being able to make ideas become tangible, because this part is very rarely discussed and I believe, it’s actually the most important and valuable part.
Each time incrementally the stakes get higher; as in I propel myself though a more challenging state of change with more audacious projects because the evaluation of my limits, the risk involved and skill base has changed and grown. These ‘states’ are not all pretty, and although there is a lot of understanding out there about making and creating; the therapeutic outlet or physical result and beauty of creativity, very few people talk about the complications and challenging passages within the same context. 'Creative Process' is just art wank snobbery- we all live this pattern in varying degrees; where I draw another does sums, where I fly another gardens... 'creativity', in my opinion, essentially is listening to yourself and what makes you fizz.
Growing up in Wellington, an uber artistic town, has given me a unique insight into how we think, make and behave, and how this works and shapes a community. What I have noticed through my own life, and by being gifted with the ability to critique and reflect on my own process is that the ‘down’ side is right where the intervention of medicine, detrimental clinical and social evaluation and the labelling of psychological ‘disorders’ or symptoms (either self diagnosed or external) can come in. Raise the hands for a stress jammer, a blank out, pain relief and a comfort giver; Western culture point ya fingers at eccentric, out-there, weird, crazy or sick. I think this is also why a lot of people hide away and deal with these patches in private- it’s not easy not having it together all the time, and who wants to open themselves up to others for judgement on top of it?!
In the past I have tried all sorts of different strategies for self-help in these times and it is in these periods that if the sensitive creative brain is allowed to go a little too loose in it’s own attempt to remedy itself, that the shit can start to go pretty pear shaped. The most powerful help is talking. Why I am talking and writing is because as we evolve and become better at doing things, humans also become less tolerant to fixing bumps with hard work and time and want easy answers to bad stuff which is the better-at-doing-things brother from another mother. Re: previous post, ignorant appraisal is undone by open communication.
In my teens after battling with depression I tried medication. I lasted about two weeks. It made me feel ‘just below’ the living line and it killed any type of colour or creative spark I had in me. I felt in a fog, I feel beige and my vision and recognition of colours and concepts slid off and was muted. But I also knew that my behaviour was not helping. I was drinking heavily, I wasn't sleeping, I was in a very complex living situation, having just turned 16 I was at university and working to support myself; diet was completely up the whack and I was partying like a ninja- wild extravagant awesomeness but with complicated repercussions. I knew by being honest with myself, that that spark was actually my ticket to life and that my conduct and the situations I was into needed to be adjusted, NOT the spark.
I knew what I felt and I knew I had to work through organising myself by doing the hard yards or the alternative was mighty unappealing, also I could see a pattern and was intrigued about it- I knew then that the dark was as valid a part of my gift as the light. Plus I came up with some pretty cool stuff in those patches. I also had recognition from within my family that this was something I could learn how to manage and use to my advantage- very important opportunity there. I was encouraged to understand and to sense what happened or changed within myself and to notice patterns. My family heritage is very scientific/medical/mathematical and very creative/artistic (Oh and racing drivers, an art historian, explorers, a prime minister and persons of political standing, gold miners, a land information strategist, a missionary to China, agriculturalists, a bareback hose riding milliner- and that's only a selection of recent generations...umm rather strong willed souls…) but on track, what I want to illustrate is that patterns of thought and emotion were already recognised within my family- coupled with a ‘get on with it and sort it out’ attitude. I could talk my way in and around a psychoanalyst like a corkscrew; it was up to me to get through this, tbh- no-one else had the skills because no-one else had the whole back history of what happened and was happening, and it was so goddamn unusual and complex by that time I couldn't be bothered trying to explain it all.
3rd stage of creative process is the ‘this is shit/ I am shit’ area, Otherwise known as ‘going to ground’, ‘working through the nobblies’ or ‘dropping out of the system’; its not really physical, this very hardest part of the process is psychological, but it does have physical fallout. It. Is. Really. Difficult. It is where questioning, doubt, anixety, freakouts towards self abilities, self loathing and the unnerving state of living with a different brain activity resides. It is dark, can feel unending and hopeless, and very confusing. To me it feels like being shattered and rebuilt; not only in the project, but in my spirit. It is an integral part of the process, yah, pain and payoff, but as I have got older I have recognised I can also do something productive and target a mental attribute in here alongside working on an idea. I go for something that’s hindering me, festering and is a part of my soul that needs to be unpackaged, remedied and resolved. Not fixed- it’s not broken, it just needs some attention. It is a roadblock to the other side; undertaking has an open-ended timeframe, there is no schedule within this sector; its a progressive process, and it is extraordinary mentally and physically draining, but there is a wonderful feeling of success by getting over the Bog of Eternal Stench. Actually- it really is just like getting held up with Sir Didymus chewing the fat.
Let’s call this ‘going to ground’ as GTG for the sake of my digits and getting this out eh!
The symptoms can be pretty terrifying towards the climax of it- it seems to have an upward bell curve. Exhaustion, excema, hypna and hypnogogic (a type of pre and post-sleep sensory hallucination/ audio/ dream state that happens on the edge of consciousness), muscular tension, cravings (for all sorts of things, other ideas; relief really, it’s the point where we hit being creatively over it), very little quality sleep once ya finally get in there aaand the ‘racing-head-state’. This is when it is in hyperdrive. It really is nuts over this period and it can be very scary; continually bouncing around contemplating and searching for things. Once the key emotional concept or idea abstraction has been resolved and illuminated however, quite literally overnight, everything clears up. Actually, that’s kind of scary also because you could really be forgiven for thinking this is all completely nuts- because it is conceptual. There is no physical ball clinking down a slide saying ‘HEY! Ureka! You got it!!’ I just know within myself I’ve had a ‘Ureka!’ and that the circle has past GO again.
Lets roll with this ball image. Because I actually visualise my ideas like that. When I am thinking about what I want to do next, what I'm aspiring towards, what helps others and what is challenging; + if it has become time for a very big overhaul then who and what I want to be, look & behave like, in come the balls and the basket.
I am not only thinking about what I want to achieve, but I am very detailed about aesthetics, logistics, practise and what I need to know within this too. Into the basket over the weeks, months and much longer, ‘big’ heavy ideas come down, quite distinct from general brain chatter ideas and fill it up, sometimes some get taken out and replaced with others, and other times a particular ball grows in complexity. Every day I take them out and play with them, thinking about the attributes and making physical actions towards the things I can do that add towards each. The basket slowly becomes filled with usually about 7 orbiting biggies which break down into more elaborate subcategories- ha, that took a while to figure the gauge. Yer, actually visualised in a whicker basket (my Nana and I used to collect flowers in it), each a different colour and moving, changing and dynamic like nebula. I can slide into each and see how they are progressing. They are things I am working on, things I want to do, make and achieve and all manner of other things, but there is also always one ball about my personal identity- which contains a quality I would like to better, learn, refine or remove and facets within this of my relationships with others, the environment and myself. The diversity of these keeps in balance my obsessive tendency by giving me the freedom to swap between things, especially if one has stalled... or perhaps just spread out that obsession lol
After each ‘project’ or transition, in a type of summary I file and shelve the baskets which pack down origami style from 3D to 2D and are organised into a big khaki metal filing cabinet ‘long term memory’… funnily from my dad’s office that I used to go to when I was a child... I wonder if the next generation thinks of an app logo?? I often go back in this space when I need to dig around for something and re-inflate baskets and withdraw balls. Sometimes searching for a tool or experience which can help in the present, sometimes looking for inspiration or a piece of the jigsaw for an idea. These are decades old- my memory is gargantuan and I can recall events, imagery, sensory incidents, ideas and thoughts back to being a very new infant- wooow I hear you say, yet this has very much been a double edged sword of a gift; it comes with recollection of every bad thing in just as vivid detail.
In my working headspace there are different baskets in circulation too, projects floating in foreground and background and they are not static, they elevate or diminish depending on requirements and validity. Most people try obsessing about an idea with total surrender or desire when they imagine their future partner; holding onto the concept and furnishing it over time. I have trained myself to do just this but over many diverse ideas & investments, and to sustain the development over months and often years. The cool thing about doing this is that these 'dreams', these ideas significantly impact what we do and who we are, because we collect and input activities and behaviours which match our vision. This is why I love encouraging people to find what they love, because by building towards something amazing, fun and great, it in turn helps the individual become just the same thing. Gawd, I could start getting really in depth, but I think it's best I keep to simple in this blog right or things are going to get sqiggly… and well, I prefer organically sharing things with people when the right time arrises within conversations that have relevance to the parties involved.
Dealing with festers, parts I don't like about myself and just general total questioning and tip-the-whole-fucking-thing-upside-down-and-shake-it-it-all-needs-to-be-rearranged mentality is what comes up in the already complex GTG area- yerp, when it rains it pours. Validating it is the mucho grande super key component, it becomes as important as the other balls. Over time, this allows me to come to a level of understanding about whatever it is that time and let it slide away. It’s like a pay-off. This process is only my process because of how I am built and what I can and cannot live with based on my morals and thought patterns, but I know others feel and go through a very similar pattern. My focus (interchange with obsessive nature- these qualities aren't to be scared of; they are mighty useful when channeled into the right zone and honestly, success comes snuggled up with addiction and obsession; it's a matter of dealing with it not being scared of it) knows that my brain needs a type of clarification or monkey chews in loop. I don't like loops, I like resolutions so I can grow into the next thing. Writing about this makes it sound if everything is judged and rigid but it’s not like that, less anal retentive and more playful organic perhaps. Planned and unplanned, flow & structure, control and fluidity; little curling mind waves. Sometimes resolution is quick, other times not so as it bubbles along at life flow.
Over the proceeding project and in the new idea phase, pointers and markers within me and my experiences direct me to what this next dark baby is. There is no question in my heart what it is by the time the balls are clear- there is actually no denying it within myself, and if I try to do so, things happen to very clearly remind me that I cannot wiggle away. In lieu of having bairns of my own I have behaved as if mother to my existence through my actions and my ideas- I think that's a rather wonderful way to exist and fascinatingly there are similarities in timeframe also.
Structured art making is the precursor to GTG. This is a happy and light stage; usually production of the resolution of ideas from the previous project experience, recently London and The Hague. In one light it is not the ‘real’ hard work. I would say that the sailing through the darker waters is actually the greatest art in itself, actually, lets go bigger than that, I really think the best art we make IS life, yes- we are all artists. 'Dark' is not necessarily sad either, it's a different type of energy or situation than that; it's like an emotionally dense and invested area- it can be happy but there is a lot going on.
In the past I have caused myself serious physical damage by not gauging what level of physical activity I can couple with my headspace at this particular time. I have realised I require habitual activities which are not high impact because I hurt myself if I do that- not in accidents but in quantity. I don't realise I’m pushing too hard because I’m trying balance out the level of stress and processing that’s going on in the noggin. Yoga, squash, cardio, swimming, and many others have been in that slot and although they work for the mental side, I have a tendency to take the amount into the extreme because brain is going gogogo- and so body gets pushed to gogogo also. I am a very tenacious animal. Incoming: collateral damage: I put my physical health secondary. Those activities I am passionate about can come back in at a different stage, but I have to be very aware within GTG what I choose and in what proportion. This time my new activities were teaching myself to ride my bicycle with no hands (that's around corners too) and standing tree pose for extended periods with my eyes closed. As I mature, I am better at being able to cut myself some cord and validate taking care of myself- but I think this is what is very challenging maybe more so for some of us than others. Yeah, yeah ‘take care of yourself’ we hear, um- yeah, I am trying to, but I don't have an off switch and I'm focused on bigger things.
Overall the whole system is quite balanced- hence my assimilation with yin and yang, juxtapositions and spectrums because this is a direct reflection of living for me- OOOooo idea! Love it.. hmm hate it… Ok, not so bad.. Ok yeah, really fucking love it! Yet, it takes exertion to get it circulating and keep it so; making choices to change and focus attitudes. Perhaps a more accurate image which correlates to yin and yang, is this system as like ascending a spiral staircase where the light bulbs have blown in spots; the stairs are still there it just takes care, use of different senses and a change of pace to continue escalating. Aim of the game is to advance and make the next progressive move in order to not be stuck on a landing on the same level, or dip backwards; all about timing and sometimes requiring hanging out for a while rather than moving. Duality is the nature of life; where in one place it is day, another has dipped into night. When one is happy, another is sad; when it is summer in one location, another shivers in winter; where a new life is born, another passes away. Without this darkness the very essence of creativity wouldn't exist as it is itself; the left to it's right, the hot to it's cold, the back to it's front.
Cognisant thought and vivid memory has at points made me scared in my life. I am super aware of my conscious; of decisions and why I am doing something. I can give you a very direct reason for every single decision dating way, way back and the ramifications and relationships that has to other components. That has been challenging in my life to learn how to deal with. Awake, and asleep- but what do you do when there is much more ‘awake’ going on and very, very little 'sleep'?! Well, you naturally want to knock yourself out a notch right. All of us do to a certain extent with anything that brings ease; everything has a time and place. We share a very basic primal need for hugs of brain and body.
Unfortunately because of the level of energy zipping in at times, sometimes the more gentle avenues of comfort don't work so well, and some things that others can use have disastrous consequences due to my mental and chemical make up or because I abused them in the past; i.e. sugar. I make my own choices on my own needs and feelings, but over the years not all of these were fantastic, but ya gotta do what ya gotta do and learn through the process. Looking at static sitting meditation for example, my tolerance is comparatively low. It took me a while to realise through all this guru competition and advice out there that my activities were meditation but at a different levels. The experiences I felt as I ‘popped to the left’ or found another space in my cognisant awareness where the motor was powering away in one room, but I had slipped off to another, was a powerful thing to realise. I have been immensely fortunate in my life to be able to fight for what I love, what makes me fizz and happy and hardline into these spaces. It is why I am passionate about helping others find what they adore also, because pinpointing a fizz = happy = learning & retaining = inspiration = healthy = constructive existence.
All the activities and passions I adore and have excelled at were initially introduced or imparted to me through people I have loved, admired and respected (or I was told I 'couldn't do it')- I think there is nothing cooler than being able to pass this type of connection and inspiration on to others. The only control one can have over these life changing meetings is by following what we love to become better and happier people- kinda simple equation aint it- yet the simplest things can often be the most challenging. Affluence affords the ability for a person to make more choices based on feelings rather than solving restrictions, but when you don't have this resource, nor emotional support to have the courage to fight for these pleasures, life becomes immensely more challenging and complex. A little encouragement, a little investment of one-on-one time, goes an incredibly long way in helping another find surety within themselves, their esteem and ideas, and ultimately their success. Interestingly however, life has a way of working with us and helping out with this equation the more that’s powered into it both in action and belief.
My church has two wheels, snow underfoot, clouds as the congregation and a pounding base line like a heartbeat as hymns. The infinite combination of inconsistencies and conditions are my playground and often the adversity of these combinations where I find delight. High winds, night-time, low visibility and howling storms bring me a sense of contentment and connection to being alive; immersed within the energy surrounding me and I perform better within this. The theatricality of my homelands' weather playing a huge part within my comfort and conditioning. I don’t care about where the 'creative process' leads, I just enjoy the moment it currently positions me within. What's the meaning to it all? I'm not interested in figuring that out, or, well there isn't one really to me- I just get on with it is as best possible; I love experiencing all the kaleidoscopic variations. Experiencing not recording- you won't find me with a Go-Pro or camera attached to me or posting heaps of action things- I'm playing not faffing and fucking around, and I'm not interested in participating with others who recording-shaking-their-tail-feathers comes primary to getting out there. Privacy and discretion are important qualities to me and who I am with at the time are the most important people who deserve my undivided and full attention.
I get bored by things I have followed through to fulfilment, or worked through previously, so crave the next step up. Actually I cannot keep humming harmoniously unless I continue to find the next step up because what worked in the past was a for a different me at a different stage, with a different set of variables. ‘Step up’ isn't necessarily an evaluated risk either, it can be, but it also can be just something different. I am far more interested in experiences rather than things and testing out knowledge or phycological tools- hence me shoving my gluttonous spectrum back into a nicer area, or maybe just internalising where it’s not so obvious lol. Actually I think I’m happy to admit that- I’m a mind pig. Sharing time is my #1 most valuable and luxurious commodity.
Determining a safe living environment is immensely important and challenging; predominantly because I do so many different things with a high proportion of change. This time it was much less about supplying and more about reduction or removing. The more you travel, the more you know you need less, and I get a great sense of satisfaction from resolving things using limited resources. I need a little stress to learn, but I am particular about why and where and how much, especially as I can veer quite easily into whoop-nelly-put-the-brakes-on-how-the-hell-did-that-all-get-there territory. Sometimes heart decisions propel me to do something that only later is revealed how important it was for me to jump at that time. Selling Maria on the way back from the Netherlands is a prime recent example. It felt right (in a sad way), the right people had come to light and the process was smooth, it was the ‘right’ thing to do on a emotional, logistical and financial basis, but it wasn’t until later I saw how not having access to being able to jump in my car was a useful tool; some of the best are the missing ones. My car had also become an identity hairy handbrake- I had grown through that woman and wanted to become my next incarnation.
The equation of boredom + self absorption + loneliness (not of people, it's a deeper current) + propensity for greed/ lust/ gluttony (ideas, information, and knowledge; consumption | production & receptor | creator out of balance) = Miss Murcott on the brink of a not good coping strategy and needing self intervention. Self intervention foremost- not action, information, or any other thing but to stop, un-package, breathe and give recognition to not feeling great- validation is tremendously important for me. Location: DEFCON 5; if I shoved anxiety or negative sensations under the blanket at this point I used to resort to a pervious not so good fill. That used to be hard when I was tired, stressed, confused/ feeling isolated; a little lost within an activity, been travelling for many hours or was in GTG. However, understanding this pattern was essential learning in order to become the woman I am, undertake the complex things I do, and develop further within the lifestyle I adore. Most of the time I succeed, and on occasion I epic-ly flop but Ill let ya in on something, as soon as we can define and talk about something, very quickly that thing starts to diminish and become manageable. Without these qualities, I would never have become so good or tenaciously invested into things in the first place; often the compulsion to do something amazing comes from the fire/ anger/ pain of something quite opposite.
Oh, but wait, if you're thinking this is elaborate enough there is another pattern that is added to this as a woman. The monthly cycle of hormonal, physical and emotional complexities associated to just being born in these amazing bodies. What is depression, what is pre-menstrual tension, what is related to the idea, what's just grumpy tummy?! We are built to be the greatest creators of our species, but this comes with intricate attributes. It is like a giant tapestry of different lines of coloured emotional flux and wane; incredibly complex and unique to each of us. Unless I wanted a catalogue of definitions, I was quite happy to discard the labels; rise to the challenge and navigate each day, each combination with it's own countermeasure. The recognition of these patterns are as important as the former- because yes, at some point both GTG and this will align, and whoah nelly that’s one to sail.
As a woman creative in particular there are interesting additional challenges related to this existence, but where I found strength because early on it was like ‘so, we are trying to medicate the essence of what I’m born as/ with?!’. If you know a young creative, perhaps now with a different perspective, the challenges of not only all this, but the pressures of identity, body image, bullying through social media, a recording device every turn just ready to catch you as you discover, explore and play; societal pressure to behave and look a certain way, oh plus figure out what you do and are of corse; you can seriously be forgiven for transgressions no? Actually I think we have a bigger problem with the next generations in that they are too scared to actually let loose. Because what you learn in this necessary process is that you are not the centre of the Universe, no-one really gives a shit and that ya need to get over yourself. Doing something a little too much and going a bit far teaches us a very valuable lesson involving ego and entitlement- a young person can't get this 'oh!' if they can't push the envelope.
There is absolutely no question that there is a particular demographic and profile which is more susceptible to having some complicated challenges, but they are only that. Attributes come with problems, and problems come with attributes. 'Naughty' more often than not, is 'bored' and 'mighty smart' in a misunderstood and frustrated package. I used control over my weight and body image as a young person as a tool for me to retreat back into working with and untangling the first puzzle I had be born with; I wasn't ready for round two at age 10. Nor for the revelations of quite unusual gifts and the awareness that came with so young. My revenge upon the world for complicating my existence by giving me all these cool qualities but quandaries that went with, was to take that fire and turn it internal. It’s hard to talk as an adult- but yet we expect a child and teen to be able to articulate intense feelings from complex circumstances?! It's not an unusual tactic for smart cookies to resort to behaviours which alter sensory perception in the attempt to reprogram themselves and find contentment- strategies that with the influx in accessible information/ knowledge/ introspection and loneliness, will become more and more prevalent within society as we progress. If a person is making stuff or participating in forms of expression; i.e. changing and playing; they're feeling things- these creations say a huge amount about how they are processing life- less focus on the stuff, more on the feel.
All of this sequence recognition takes a significant amount of time, modern world you just don't like this. It also takes a huge amount of faith and belief in personal processes and composition. Some physical; anatomical, biological and hereditary, some cerebral and sensory, and some esoteric. I believe that no way is 'the' way, we are all made up differently- no metaphysical, therapeutic or psychological way by itself has all the answers because that is hooning in one direction with blinkers on. Many terms and classifications are interchangeable too; they are the same thing from different angles. Plus, science has no grasp on feeling- we are utterly unique in how we individually perceive this, there are many variations in intensity and subtle differences between qualities. It takes recognition and use of the whole system together to get this human safe and healthy.
Life can be pretty hypocritical; many 'bad' things are 'good' in different packages, it's just society has attached stigmas associated to one and not the other. My reality sees it that if something is enjoyable and productive then it is valuable, I make my own opinion about whether a tag is relevant. I wanted to learn about myself and who I am by doing the hard yards because I knew I could make myself well, and that the well went with the unwell hand-in-hand. I think this is where the modern world is getting to a bit o’ a problem. We are well and unwell, but people would rather not admit that. There is a lot of fear and competition about pain. A traumatic life experience for me may be just as significant and as painful to you as burning the cookies with all sorts of expectations and pressures tied in. In my experience, the proportion of trauma is always balanced out by periods of healing; what goes up, must come down and vica versa. When a child is screaming after falling over and grazing their knees, we instinctively give love, compassion, recognition to the experience and validate that they are hurting- why is it that as adults this pattern is forgotten? It is only the ego that has an age- the soul is still the child wanting a hug and to be told it's ok.
A huge reason why I went to Japan was because my soul was missing a jigsaw piece of a spiritual element, and I knew it was there. I don't know how, sometimes I just know things; I completely trust my intuition for my requirements. We all have special gifts for our stories but there is a vast amount of work involved in order to hone them. 'Follow the dream', hmm, that always sounds like there is a trail to follow, where I see it as a seek-&-discover and a build in progress through choices. I have resolved many dreams and mastered different vocations (or portions of bigger visions depending on which perspective is taken); one of my special knacks is that I relish, enjoy and seek growth through change. My life has taught me that you can do anything you set your mind to, but it works like a ripple; each layer building upon the former. My mind may be set on something, but my spirit is the one to guide me through the paths to achieve it. Going gang busters independently from very young has meant my boundaries and seeming limitations have been tested differently to the average and I have learnt and honed a sense of sureness in accordance to this. There is validity in a great variation of purposes, but the individual has to sharpen a sense of intuition in order to learn how to trust themselves through making friends with their mind. Couple that with passion, timing, attitude, tenacity, optimism and woooork, and you've got special sauce in the mix. What cannot be overlooked however, is what price are ya prepared to pay for that vision? There is always consequence.
Please lets be clear, I am not denying the benefits of medical or clinical intervention, actually quite the opposite- make up your own mind, but we can mend ourselves much better than most people realise. A closer inspection of a need may highlight that a resolution lies in an alternative avenue; just as constructive but without profiteering and fear attached alongside. And without blanketing the emotion or transferring it, rather un-packaging and recognising it; although sometimes we need to procrastinate or chip off a portion in order to get somewhere, and to have fun! Unorthodox often gets slagged as radical or reactionary- but remember, what is now considered 'normal' at one point itself was unconventional. What works for me, won’t be for another because this thing called life is totally unique with a personal collection of skills, viewpoints and things that have happened along a lifetime. I’m shining light on something complex, misunderstood and rarely discussed because when we hear something that resonates with our stories, it has a profound effect on not feeling so much like a satellite. That can be one sentence in a 1000, it doesn’t need to be the whole heaving set. Or another persons experience can ignite an ‘ahuh!’ set of dot connects inside which is coooool as.
Who I meet along my journey is far more interesting to me than what I accumulate, and those things I do adore I share, use as tools, get the best that I can at the time, play with without abandon and really, really enjoy. Do it once, do it right (and maybe repeat if it's really really great hehe). I have been radiantly flush and I have been stone cold broke for long periods, but often in those latter patches they were the times of the greatest happiness; regardless of either situation I am far more 'rich' than any sum could denominate. I totally fucking feel that- no. bullshit. You can strip me of everything (been there on more than one occasion) and it would now have absolutely no effect upon my mental health or ability to live, survive or rebuild my life. My existence is one of ultimate luxury because experience and connection is my gold and I let nothing define me. Don't get me wrong- I love cash, it's totally necessary and an awesome thing- you're not going to find me in a free-love commune (yeah, tots not my thang); I like commerce. But if I hadn't taught myself to let go of the worry associated with it, I would not be able to focus on elaborate long-term projects because they'd always be undermined by lack of funds.
I wasn't always this way- actually quite the opposite as is the case with taking on most big curves, life can be confusing and contradictory at times. I choose to do this, to challenge myself, to see what happens and how I feel if things drastically change because it makes me confront myself and my priorities. I have been selfish, belligerent, ungrateful, vicious, egotistical, confused, greedy and gluttonous, materialistic, unbalanced, with almost non existent self esteem, broken, lonely, unhealthy and very miserable at times within my life. Some of the most valuable qualities to me now have come from being their opposite and converting them with a desire and dedication to be better. Without 'bad' qualities recognised and in their working uniform, nothing amazing can happen at all; without 'want'; desire or a certain variety of greed, we cannot be better, or be compelled and driven to ambition. Without covering my lack of self esteem at some points in my life with ego, I wouldn't have had the courage to jump when I had to; without at times being self centred, well, I wouldn't have survived- it's just becoming more aware of ourselves though experience, trial and error and testing those boundaries that we can recognise what things really are, where they sit on those shoe lace spectrums and how to navigate, develop or reduce particular attributes. Everything has it's reason for being useful.
Living fluidly doesn't control what emotion gets thrown in on the journey either, it's a case of just sorting it out as it comes; unconventional lifestyles have unusual complications and pressures. Yet, humanity is forgetting that well behaved and ordinary does not make history. With a predilection for critical attitudes and an obsession with flawlessness and rivalry we have a bloody tough environment for kids (adults) to learn who they are and find a unique voice. Time to get uncomfortably comfortable. What happens in my brain by collecting these black ants in white rectangles and sharing them is as magic as what then infiltrates and bounces around in yours after reading. Sharing is caring, but what level of censorship or authenticity this has can make a fundamental difference to whether anything sticks, is beneficial or ignites a spark of inspriation.
‘Going to ground’ resolves itself; it is finite, and it’s followed by ‘This is fucking cool…again’. It is inevitable as the wheel turns, a lot of getting though is just holding on and having the tenacity to not give up or have a wobbly and discard the basket. If the basket is filled with true heartfelt idea loves then they will pull though. It is a just a matter of time, a matter of process and a matter of continuing to make small steps of work towards them through what is presented in the forefront of life within this. What we learn in any undertaking is far more valuable than the thing or result; realisations and epiphanies which shape and refine us. There is method to the madness within this also, if something isn't gelling, leave it lie for a bit, pick up another ball and have a play and see what grows furry in the meantime and pops out of brain chatter.
Humanity enables history to repeat itself because it is all most expect. There has to be faith in what is extraordinary before any pattern or proof in this configuration revels itself. It is there, and it is as fundamental as the molecules that connect us, the world and the Universe, but it requires dedicated energy towards deflecting sabotage, and defence from external and internal attack. We get thrown new and repetitive challenges and tricks to entice us off path, or see whether we'll throw a wobbly; another round on the landing or 'ohh, no, did that last time, new solution required' situations. Every few months over the lat nine I have been tempted by job offers at Peter Jackson's Weta Digital- little fork-in-the-road-carrot-dangles, often appearing right after having gone through a challenge with what I have been focusing on, and initiating me to evaluate my investments and aspirations. Pressure of modern society can easily spark jitters and financial matters can sway many people, but man made paper (eesh, its not even that anymore; numbers and electrical currents) i.e.; cachinga, is not what makes the world go round. Money is not the dominant energy. An idea, a desire, helping someone ya do or don't know, breaking a habit, political change, fixing the leak, resolving an engineering problem, breaking a habit, a pinpointed strategic and productive response to a facet of the changes in climate we are experiencing- it all starts in this pattern with making the next right step for what we are doing at the time. And I'll tell ya a biggie- helping others and changing the world for a better place starts with learning how to change and better ourselves.
People say "well I'm not going to do that, because it won't work and I'll get hurt because I have been hurt every other time". Unless ya leap you don't get rewarded with a fucking awesome that sometimes comes with a little side dish of bad- but once you have had a fucking awesome, you just want more of it, so the bad becomes easier to tolerate. Constitution gets stronger, human gets more prepared and focus is driven on the benefit not the fallout. 'Tackling Life 101' through the metaphor of eating from a dodgy street vendor- delivered by Captain Moxie hot and steaming- eesh lol 'av a laugh, it's not like we get out of life alive!
Now is explained and organised by now- not yester-hour, day, or year. What history has recorded is to learn from, be that as it may, it is only the publicised view of the particular power of the period. Egypt: incredible superpower in it's time- but Tutankhamen may have been a replica of a USA presidential candidate member for all we know. We have no idea what records of amazing events and discoveries were destroyed or controlled by authorities that had more influence. Imagine living in the future and defining and directing events working from our current media situation. Salacious, all the 'its's and 'ism's, bigoted, twisted, distorted; and not what a great proportion of intelligent minds of our time agree with- incredibly dangerous stuff. It's the kid at school who couldn't play Chinese whispers nicely and was too craven to be sincere.
I recently watched Michelle Obama being driven around the Oval Office grounds in a car pool situation with a celebrity singing to pop hits like Beyonce and Missy Elliot, when Boom, Missy appears in the back seat. Three quarters of my friends were adamant she was in the car and it was real, until I pointed out the very faint differences of colour gradient in the back window, the green screen residue cut-out of the superimposing of images together, and the fact that Michelle and her movements were never seen in the same shot- i.e. it was an actresses hand that had been inserted. How easy it is for a person's truth to be constructed, and what's the collateral? If it has importance to them and their journey, does it matter if it is real or manufactured? Needing to think that Missy and Obama were in the same car together may have relevance to propelling a person to do something extraordinary further down the line.
In the same situation, Michelle had just talked about how she was off on a tour of the Middle East promoting education of women and unobstructed access to information. So, encouraging a different culture to conform to a another's without regard to the social construct of female/ male relations and roles?... And because educating everyone is all fantastic right? Because there aren't elements of doing that that make another a rebel and revolutionary (to their partners, their families, their community)... but hold on, so this informed and aware Libyan woman is now thinking and digesting incredible (uncensored?) information and doesn't agree with or take interest in the prepackaged stuff she comes across and seeks her own truth for her own culture... Oh, right, now she has become a terrorist.
When I travel I am no longer a New Zealander, I consciously attempt to leave my preconceived notions in one corner of myself while I absorb, assimilate and acquire things which are radically different and opposite to who and what I 'am'. I am changing, but I'm not requiring others to do so. New culture, new religion, new location, new rules, new role; scrub the pre-existing format. This behaviour is the action of what everyone demands, yet seem unaware of how to procure; why would someone give respect if it is not shown in kind? We talk of 'globalisation' and of 'free sharing', yet those who are in positions of authority proclaiming liberty are not the fair children from the sandpit who shared their time and talk, toys & sandwich with their dark skinned Muslim friend from Asia. Peoples' people are much easier to find, try your bartender, your shop assistant, your nurse and those at the frontline of service. Globalisation starts with interaction; it starts with sharing that peanut and jam, and I am proud to say NZ, you are well on the path with this as a truly multicultural, celebratory and inclusive society, but on a global scale, ooph I shudder. Globalisation? Ya want the resources but not the problems? The wheel of fortune has never liked veracity and propaganda comes in the most silky of packages.
As of this week I have pushed through a rather nuggety patch for a little while at least. I have come to understand a game plan much better and the equations of what propel me to undertake different behaviours and new actions which have beneficial outcomes. I have made space within myself for improved and alternative information and continued working forwards, helping others in the process. I am immensely grateful for where I am, what I have and that I am me. Now it’s time for the next passage, enough naval gazing, yer, completely inherent to this cycle but all within balance and in it’s own time.
Right, brain, who feels like a game of ball bingo?!
I knit the chasms as best
I can manage
Slip stitch over rivers of
sadness and self loathing
Rushing torrents with
Crashing and raging below by the evening
At torrential full current
relentless hours of navigating boulders, hidden branches and debris
I go under
and pop back up
Weak, limp and battered
I pull myself to the cliff top
Night a gamble of refuge or ambush
The New Day
Gratified with the sun beating on my face
Head bowed with relief, respect and regard
Experience does nothing to harden me
by breaking me
as I crouch damp and dripping;
I never completely dry
My heart seeping as I leap from the cliff arms extended with defiance
Cat and mouse that torrent plays with me
And one day I will not resurface
But what she does not realise
That every crack becoming me
the shatters and shards
Fragment into less human