Sense of Urgency… or lack thereof
Something occurred to me this morning at 5:30am: now that I’m feeling a little better the lack of urgency has me feeling very uncomfortable. Isn’t there something I should be doing? Going out and getting? A fire to put out? I have all these new ideas and thinkings and no grasping (although my brain is really trying to). No GO GO GO and this is NOT easy and I believe is fueling some of my confusion. What am I “supposed to” be doing? Turns out nothing, or so it seems.
Everything I created over the past month (which was done with no sense of urgency by the way) is now swirling around me… the posters, the colors, the words, the emotions (those are mostly swirling inside), the ideas, the becoming. Instead of trying to grab one or four, I’m just waiting for one to fall to me, to receive what would come next. My brain is really having a hard time with that and doesn’t know how to process it. It’s a very strange place to be when you’re used to grasping in desperation. The desperation of what I’m not sure of but I am sure my amygdala has something to do with it lol.
I don’t mean I’m being passive either or not doing anything but what I am doing seems to have to marinate - which I’m not sure how to allow without taking action, which causes some panic - and I have to trust. Someone once asked me, many years ago now, “What did you do when you had a bad game?” I had a long pause, which made him realize I didn’t have many bad games so he then asked, “Why do you think you didn’t have many bad games?” My answer was this: “Well, I trusted myself, I trusted the game, and I trusted the field.” I mean from the core of my being I trusted. Is this time in my life really any different than that? It’s just a different game, which I mean with the highest regard.
All of this go, go, go society or our families have taught us is “just the way it is,” is bullshit really, isn’t it? We have been indoctrinated to keep pushing, keep moving, go bigger, etc. Why? Does anyone really pause and ask why? Because it’s exhausting and we can’t reap the rewards nor celebrate any accomplishments because we are already on the next thing! Oy! That makes no sense. There is a sacredness of it all to be honored and we often don’t see it or realize it. Celebration is a sacred act we rarely participate in - especially celebrating ourselves. Anyway, I digress a little. My morning reflections on the sense of urgency or lack thereof I’m dealing with led to this.
I’ve got all these posters with all of this brainstorming in words and colors and now they feel like they are swirling all around me. Like I can see them as they fly by and I’m close to discovery BUT reaching out and trying to grab one is not working. They are elusive and sometimes it feels like taunting. It’s like I have to wait for it to fall out of the sky (or my unconscious) and if I can get to a point of receiving (seemingly what I already know on some level), then each will rain down as it should in the right order and with the right intensity. No sense of urgency or grasping, just ignition and energy. Energizing instead of constricting… Inspiring instead of drudgery… breathing instead of gasping. This is a tall order for people like me that are used to taking action all the time or who find themselves putting out fires for others and their urgencies.
The urgency becomes the fuel but not in the way that a car travels, but more in the way there’s a bonfire in the middle of the kitchen and no way to put it out. It wreaks havoc and strangely enough, can burn you from the inside out even though you think it’s outside of you. It’s not. We often want it to be, but it’s not. And it will burn you out faster than you think without even realizing it.
In grad school, I wrote an extensive paper about athletes and performance anxiety. There is a need for some anxiety to alert the body and mind that it’s time to concentrate, perform, and increase focus; but the threshold is delicate in that just a little too much and one can go into flight or freeze mode and this obviously affects their performance negatively. Just enough though, gets them in flow. I had forgotten about this paper until I listened to the chapter on Bewilderment yesterday (thank you, Jeffrey Davis and your book Tracking Wonder). There’s some clicking happening.
This led me to remember when I played. I used to say the only pressure that exists is the pressure you put on yourself, it’s true here too. I believe I rarely had bad days because I also believed this wholeheartedly. What was there to worry about? Like I stated earlier, I had confidence in and trusted myself, the game, and the field. This has shown up over and over again in times of confusion and strife in my life. Why is what I am going through now any different? Is it different? I don’t think so.
All this said, patience is also a key factor for me. It comes with trusting the open and receiving and that all will come when the time is best for each. No urgency. No destructive fires, only ignition.