I attended a talk earlier this week – a dialog between a Buddhist shastri and a Unitarian Universalist minister. The talk itself was funny and lovely and interesting. They touched on their personal takes on human nature, spiritualism, and community and ended with the reading of the Mary Oliver poem “The Summer Day.” The poem ends with a question, which we were asked to ponder:
It’s interesting how this question was raised for me right now, given my state of mind. I’m feeling a lack of motivation that I need to overcome. I need to need something. Maybe that something is not love. Maybe it’s achievement. Maybe it’s creating a positive change in the world. But something. Something that starts a fire in my belly and puts a spring in my step.
I’m bored and unmotivated and I’ve been sort of passively awaiting inspiration. It could be that this is the wrong approach, that I should be acting despite my instincts, here. Fake it ‘til I make it, so to speak.
What’s more – come to think of it, I believe I am actively avoiding or ignoring inspiration. I was invited to join an advanced screenwriting class by a teacher who taught my last class in the spring. It’s been bothering me – this half-written thing. I’d really like to finish it. But for some reason, I am making excuses for ignoring his email. The class will cost money and funds are a little tight. I signed up for a comedy skit writing class that starts in mid-October. I’m in a weekly discussion group that requires reading. I’ve committed to some volunteer work at the meditation center I attend.
These are all good things. They are. I just need to locate my give-a-shit. I seem to have misplaced it. I am this little dopey bird, and I need to be booted off the cliff immediately:
I don’t want to be the dopey bird forever. So does that mean I should sign up for the screenwriting class, finish my screenplay, submit a cartoon to the New Yorker, jump headlong into work, revise some old essays and start submitting them, pay to set up my blog properly, buy some knee-high Doc Martens and just hold my breath and do it all? To hell with the expenses and never mind how many hours are actually in a day. Just fucking do the stuff that you want to do because honestly you do have the energy, you just need to get your ass into gear and find your get-up-and-go.
Just decide to kick ass at everything. All of the things. Enough of this sitting on my ass and hiding in plain sight. If I fail, at least I will fail spectacularly.