An old adage, but I’ve seen it applied over and over in folk lore, stories and songs. I firmly believe that the nature of humans require something to believe in, to aspire to, that is bigger than us. Without which, we cannot hope and dream. Without which, we will struggle to look forward to a better tomorrow.
What a tremendous year it has been. There has been some great losses, and big battles that have just started. The world is turning over, I can feel it. And change isn’t going to come easy to all of us, but it’s starting now and there is nowhere to run. It stares you in the face.
It is also such a great and powerful time to create and be inspired, driven by the energy that is flowing around. And I’ve been even more motivated to write, through the words of Leonard Cohen (via brainpickings):
“Before I can discard the verse, I have to write it… It’s just as hard to write a bad verse as a good verse. I can’t discard a verse before it is written because it is the writing of the verse that produces whatever delights or interests or facets that are going to catch the light. The cutting of the gem has to be finished before you can see whether it shines.“
Indeed Mr Cohen is right. The process serves to clear the path to clarity, and arrival. Without seeing the words come out, you cannot begin to rearrange or curate or even to understand what is going on. The act of keeping a journey, or writing a poem or a song, I feel, is very similar. And I’ve been writing ever since I can remember.
Also I’ve learnt to be open to anything, especially serendipity – a word I used to associate with fate, destiny. I don’t so much believe in fate or destiny as an avoidant form of passivity. I do believe in meeting experiences (people and places) in the eyes, fully absorb what is presented to you, and being thankful in return for the experience. What comes after, well that all depends on whether you left the door open or closed.
A recent article I read by Courtney E. Martin, mostly about people working for themselves finding new opportunities, warns against seeing these relationships as transactional, like that person at a mixer who works the room collecting business cards. It’s more about knowing lots of people and leaving room for serendipity.
“I think the biggest mistake people make with networking is when they think it’s a separate mode from just being a kind, generous, curious human being”
I’ve not made hundreds of contacts through the few networking sessions I’ve been to, but the connections I have made that have lasted, has turned into new opportunities. Not because I had only the intention of gaining something (everyone in some respect is looking to gain something), but my attitude was relaxed, and I was more curious about the people and I cared for them. Friendship is the key for me, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
This is what I believe in. I believe in forging strong connections through genuine and mutual interest over time. I believe in the goodness and kindness in people, and I give the benefit of the doubt always. I believe in second chances, and to a degree, a third. I believe in forgiveness and kindness. And I believe in connections, while temporary, serves to teach me and help me grow.
Yeah I might get hurt, and situations change. But I’d rather this than not knowing. I’d rather the full-fledge spectrum than being in the dark. Although I do appreciate the greys deeply.
And so I’ll leave you now with a new track I’ve spent the last week thinking about … and it really drove me a bit insane when I started to work on it. It is still in the works, but I appreciate your time: