What is it that I actually hope to accomplish on these little mental vacations I take to other parts of the globe?
I find myself looking at flight routes and timetables and transport difficulties in regions I have yet to visit. Do I not realize that it is not logistics that holds me back but initiative? I am smart enough to do this-- to travel and work independently wherever I would like. I can adapt myself to difficult conditions with the best I am certain. What must I do? For the first time in months I feel truly stuck.
For whom do I wait? For what conditions am I biding my time. Am I disconnected from my goal itself or only the means to get there? I leave so much undone. I fail to push myself because I am bewildered. The path is not clear to me. I feel only anxiety and guilt for all of the efforts that I might be making. I weigh my days and find them wanting as I lay in bed at night wondering just what the hell I accomplished today. Someone told me last night that I should trust my audacity. I might, for example, be better off simply going to India and finding a mission on my own than peeling potatoes in the basement of a Greek restaurant in Montreal. Yes, I have arrived in Seuss's infamous waiting place
. Should I take that as license to go off recklessly and half-cocked? Yet, what are my alternatives.
There is some kind of disconnect between responsible action and planning for me. Much of my efforts these last months have been characterized by spontaneity--something at which I excel--but the traits of followthough and persistence are the ones that elude me. My failure to find meaningful work has hit me hard. How do we all react to disappointment? One may react with resignation, the sense of defeat, negative self-talk precluding any further action. Thank goodness, I am at least not doing that. One may react with patience. Not everything can happen overnight we say. Some things will require time. But which
things? And if I am resolved to waiting for some outcome, what if I am closing my mind to even greater possibilities? Finally, determination. Unceasing energy and appetite for action. Frustration, excitement, anticipation, restlessness.
These things become allies. Positive self-talk that won't allow for giving up and the charged emotions to back it up, to keep feeding the beast until my success becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Yes, that's the way.
I long to get into bed again feeling exhausted and deeply satisfied by what I've done. Teddy Roosevelt said that "far and away the best prize that life offers is the chance to work hard at work worth doing." I have my dreams. I think of them every morning. I think of them every night. But they have become shrouded in apathy.