Some things we try, despite their apparent futility, because we're compassionate and we're human. That's what we do. We try. We try to connect, we try to move, we try (if we're doing things right) to communicate. But here's the thing--communication involves a great deal of listening.
And, much to our constant surprise, very little talking.
If we're doing it right, the moving becomes a mutual exchange of listening. Not just hearing, but comprehending what is said, what is heard, what is on offer.
The problem with this is that listening is a skill in decline (our political system is, ahem, just one example of such a breakdown).
You want your herbalist's recommendation? Go to the woods. Or the prairie. Or the ocean, the mountains, the roof of your building, the city park. Plant yourself (yes, a deliberate choice of words), and just let space remind you what you'd forgotten about listening.
Let yourself take what you need.
Practice as often as possible.
So often, I think, we don't feel comfortable risking anything unless what we're putting out there is as finished a product as possible. No wonder we end up procrastinating, excusing, and subconsciously sabotaging ourselves.
See, here's the thing, I think, that trips us up (especially in the West): we don't like to be beginners, and we don't like to admit we don't know how to do something. But I've got to say, as uncomfortable as it is to walk in, wide-eyed and brimming with intentions and ideas, but admit you have no idea how to get to the point you've envisioned, it's such a relief to put all of that down in front of someone who's been there, who was once where you were. It's such a relief to then sit down and say, "Here's what I've got; any chance you can help me sort it? Because I have no idea how this particular life-filing system works."
And then stop talking. Start listening. Don't go on and on about the successes in your life prior to this, because this thing? This...
Fear feels safe, in a way. It's all-encompassing, pervasive, persuasive, and contagious.
Really, it'slike the perfect weapon.
But make no mistake--it is a weapon and all weapons--even fists and sticks, stones and snowballs--are dangerous and deadly. So while your fear may make you feel sheltered andprotected, it will turn on you. It will grab you by the arms, this friend, this protector, and shove you in front of it as soon as there's the slightest hint of danger, the slightest threat of damage to its own being.
Sure, it will fight your battles for you. Until it won't. Until it uses you like the body shield you are, leavingyou withnothing--no skills, no wits, no survival instinct, and no cavalry to save youbecause, honeychild,fear will alienate you.
Fear will pull you away from your tribe and insert you into a traveling band of fear-mongers who will, I promise you, scatter like roaches in the light of any threat. They will leave you high and dry--a moving target.
"I'm not interested in competing with anyone. I hope we all make it." ~Erica Cook
I mean, I'll play scrabble with you, hell yes I will. But I won't keep score. Feel free, though, if that's your thing. I'll even clap for you if you win, but if you want a rise from me, a little extra to fuel your competitive fire, then you probably want a different partner.
Instinct and prowess, a little ego? All good. It's how we got here, after all. It's how we picked up our first tool, hid from our first saber-toothed tiger, cooked our first foods, planted our first crops. That's survival. But I'll bet you it wasn't 'discovered' or 'accomplished' by one individual. It takes a village to see the greater needs of the whole. After all, if one dude discovered fire, kept it all to himself, well, let's just say it's pretty easy to be king when you're the only one left standing.
So go ahead. Keep your scores. No need to shove past me on your race to the top. I'll gladly step out of your way while...