There are words like “if” or “when.” I hear them spoken in ways like “When” or
If this is something that you can understand or if “when” has become the determining factor of what you do; or if the word “if” and “when” determine how you’ll succeed; or, if you believe that this is the best you can be (but you want more) or “if” there is something holding you back like a mindset or a belief – or “if” you’ve become limited by an opinion; or, if you think the world just doesn’t work out like it’s supposed to – and there you are, alone in your thoughts. Or, “if” you seem alone in your life and no one really gets it. Or, what about your moods?
Ah the mind.
When you’re on, you’re on and when you’re great, you’re great. The mind is a place where we live and we breathe. We think and we grow or we think and we fall.
It all depends . . .
We are a sea of choices. Which one? What do we choose and oh, what happens if we choose and wish that we chose otherwise?
For example, we find ourselves in a train station and for the moment, I will use this station as a symbol of life. There are two shuttles. Both will run parallel yet both rides are completely separate experiences. One shuttle could be mild. The other shuttle could be uplifting and promising.
Or, one shuttle can be packed with people since all of us are on the move and all of us are searching for something and all of us are on the way to the other side (or whatever that means).
There was this thing we used to call outdoors. Remember it? There were places too, like playgrounds for example. We used to go there when we were kids. Or an open field was a good place too. We used to fly kites. We used to talk. We used to play. And as I say this, I tell this to a white computer screen in an otherwise dark loft. As I say this to myself, my fingers push keys to formulate the words on a person-made creation, which we call technology. I say these words in my head that appear on a screen to formulate my sentences. Yet, nobody reads anymore. Books and the traditional publishing business is and has been forever altered with systems that read to us for us.
Are you ready for a little bit of honesty?
Here’s what people will tell you not to say. Here are the things people will tell you not to think, yet we think them. We feel them. We hear our thoughts as an internal voice and our thoughts are real.
Our thoughts may not be accurate but in the moment, our thoughts are as real as you or me.
Perhaps, this is why they say perception is not true. But instead, our perception is only true to us.
I read somewhere that there are currently more than 15,000 sales positions open in New York, New York. And who knows, maybe this is true. Or, maybe this is more of another stream of misinformation on the internet. I’ve seen the want ads before. They are interesting to me. The sales jobs read with a sort of, “The sky is the limit” idea, talking about a base salary, plus commission, plus benefits, plus training. Or, there are the “Be your own boss” type of sales ads that connect with a fantasy in the mind and feed the “Dare to be rich” fantasies.
There are things we are famous for saying in times when we have to explain something unfortunate. For example, the common response after someone is asked “Why’d you do that” is usually “I don’t know.” Or, another one of my favorites is, “You have to promise not to get mad.” As if this promise works because by saying this, in fairness, most people are already prepared to be mad — and, whether we promised or not, usually, we get mad.
I was remembering the lesson by a famous TED speaker Sean Stephenson who said, “Lesson number one: never believe a prediction that does not empower you.” I was thinking about the yellow line that divides the highway between us and oncoming traffic. I was thinking about how easy it is to lose focus for a second—and just like that, BAM! a head on collision.
I am thinking now about the pathways I have chosen. I am thinking about the dead ends in which I found myself in more times than once. I am remembering a morning when the sun was just about to take the sky. It was summertime in my young life. I was in the middle of too many changes and still handling the tail-end of a three year probation sentence. And there I was, about to handle an additional charge that was now pending after a fight in a law firm parking lot.
There was an old boss of mine. He was mean as a snake and twice as angry. He wasn’t always this way. Some say this was because the man decided to stop drinking. In fact, there were writings on the bathroom walls and in different places around the establishment which said, “Have a drink already!” This was a jab at the old boss and a sign that described the sentiment of his crew.
There were some who said that the boss was really a good person but something happened when his title changed. Something happened when he went from being a worker to a boss and then suddenly, he was on the lookout for anyone who was trying to cut corners. His famous saying was, “Whatever you’re thinking about doing or wherever you’re thinking about hiding, don’t do it because I’ve already been there and done that.”
People amaze me.
I have been watching the world go around for a long time. I’ve seen the ups and downs of life. I have had my share of failures and of course, I am human too. I have my share of faults. I have character defects, imperfections, shortcomings and all that go along with being a person.
I have been on either side of the mental health table for most of my life. As a child, I have been someone in front of a man with a white coat and a clipboard. However, as an adult, I have become somewhat of an advocate for those who cannot advocate for themselves.
There is more to us than simple plans or ideas. We are more than goals and hopes or dreams. However, same as the physical affects the mental; our personal life affects the professional life (and vice versa).
And what do we want? How do we want to live?
These are important questions. What are the goals and more importantly, what can we do to achieve them? All of these questions consist of a unique formula. However, the truth is there is a simple answer to all of the above. The key to achieving our goals is to create actionable steps. This has to be realistic, achievable and sustainable. As simple as this may be, life is not easy. Work is not easy. And balance is not always so simple.