It’s All in How You Use It

We live in an extremely diverse culture even with all the attempts to manipulate and control us into conformity. There is a ginormous menu of experiences available and I waste less and less energy and attention judging others for their choices that are likely way different than mine.

We can’t really know what addiction, crutch, silly diversion or ridiculous activity is doing for another. Perhaps they need it to navigate a tricky period of their life or they are learning or balancing something.

Addictions to drugs, overeating, overspending and the like are, of course, serious. Then there are the kinds of addictions like overexercising, watching too much television, chronic complaining and such that are common enough that we can get by with them although they do damage to our lives.

Probably every one of has addictions–soft addictions like Facebook, reading fantasy literature and the like. It seems to be part of being human.

Caroline Myss says they allow us to maintain a given structure of behaviors by locking us into patterns of choice. We can know our way around in the world of those behaviors, know the language, excuses and adapt to the consequences even though we may loathe them.

I’ve successfully managed addictions seemingly by upgrading to less harmful, less expensive ones.

One of my current ones is immersive roleplaying. I get to control an avatar that encounters vampires, aliens and giant squirrels. It’s tremendous fun and it actually benefits me in many ways which would be a topic for another post.

But I do tend to go there when real life things are a challenge and I’m not sure what to do. In fact one of the reasons I stopped posting here back in April or so, besides wanting to spend more time outdoors as I wrote about, was because of this activity.

I like to think I could quit and I’m sure I’ll get tired of it eventually but I have noticed that I keep it pretty much a secret from people I’m acquainted with in real life.

There are worse things that other people are doing. And a lot of times it’s how we use something, as is the case with guns, alcohol or sex.

It’s just something I consider sometimes as I watch myself and others navigate the time we live in.

Observations About Giving Up

There are a lot of things I don’t know. Sometimes I’m amazed that I got to be this age without learning some basic things–things that seem like trivia to me–that other people take for granted as fact.

Today I’m writing about something I do know and I don’t really care anymore who believes it or not.

I am very empathetic, which is I can feel what it’s like to be something or someone. People who are not wired this way don’t have a clue. Also I’m very observant and very interested in the creative expression of others. In the particular genius of others.

So, I notice amazing, amazing people with talent and they are seemingly not recognized and supported. Brilliant blog posts. Moving pieces of art. Singers on the street corners of my city. You know what I’m talking about. They are reaching for the stars, putting their hearts out there and they have drive, passion and the willingness to work hard.

Often what comes back is apathy….like they are creating in a world full of zombies.

Anyway, then I feel their bewilderment and bitterness. Cliches come to mind. “Leap and the net will appear.” “Do what you love and the money will follow.” “Build it and they will come.”

But this is the part that I know and I’m not going to attempt to convince anyone. Everyone else is responsible for their own journey.

Our world is changing rapidly into a new one. It really matters what choices we make and how we travel in attitude and energy and all that. Things are not as they appear and everyone needs to navigate according to what they feel is best.

It is totally worth it not to give up now. Well, perhaps one needs to quit doing something and begin something else. But keeping calm and carrying on? Nurturing our dreams and talents? Expressing our gifts? Having some faith?

It is so worth it. It sucks sometimes, things look unfair and I have really crappy days. No way do I want to give up. I don’t want to look back on this time and feel that I wasted it in whining and pouting.

And that’s why I keep rocking whatever I’ve got in the moment. And I’m thrilled when my fellow humans keep putting it out there even if it appears no one is paying attention. There is more attention on what we’re doing than we realize.

Post-Thanksgiving Weekend

The little indulgences I’ve had with my diet lately hasn’t seemed to be too harmful At least I don’t have weird cravings like I do with the aftermath of eating restaurant food.

My little burst of consumerism has run its course. One of the items I got (finally) is an e-book reader. My place is overflowing with books and I’d like to use it to read books from the library. Without the strain of staring at my computer screen more than I already do. What made this a bargain is that I wasn’t in that spaced-out, glazed-eyes mode that used to generally allow a salesperson to easily get a lot of add-ons in my cart by checkout time. Extended warranties, a cool looking cover, a charger when I won’t use this for travelling and can charge it through a USB cable through my computer. Nope, didn’t get them.

Most of the shopping energy I have these days goes into grocery buying–an area in which I must be careful for health reasons. These companies that began with organic ingredients and quietly down-graded into using genetically modified foods laced with toxic pesticides while charging the same–they can just go down too along with all the other groups lacking in integrity. Greedy and self-serving.

During financial times like we’re living in, marketers can play on our insecurity and manipulate our inner hoarder into buying what we don’t need and more of it. Stuff does not equate with love. Consumerism isn’t fun and being a consumer is not my identity.

I resent being cheated. Well, I won’t look back but I can certainly make different choices now.

Some Feeling About OWS and Black Friday

With so many opinions being blasted around out there, I usually quit speaking mine. They are subject to change often and I don’t really care about changing what anyone else thinks. If they’re expressed with clarity, I can often understand where someone’s coming from. Whether I agree with them or not.

I find the Occupy Wall Street movement a very positive thing. Yes, there are people involved who are not quite coherent blah blah blah. The average worker in a corporation or a bank–they are not evil. Hard work is good. So is taking responsibility. Integrity and all that stuff. Things need to change and it will take awhile and a lot of us to bring that about. It isn’t the role of everyone to camp out like that and it certainly isn’t my role. But I admire them and those who are attempting to bring about change all over the world.

After centuries of those in high power basically saying f— you to all the rest of us citizens of planet earth, many of us are saying enough! Now f— you.

Having worked in retail, which really, really sucked in ways I won’t go into, I am very grateful to stay home on Black Friday. I’ve seen horrible things. Our consumer society, the way we’re made to feel that we are nothing and having stuff is important—yeah, I have opinions on all that.

But I’ve been on a tight budget and I got a cash gift. There are things I’ve been wanting for quite awhile, so yeah, I went out and shopped this afternoon. For the first Black Friday in years.

It must be that I’m getting older or something because I used to care more about what other people might think about my choices. Now I just go ahead and do what makes sense more often, even if it’s inconsistent or unexplainable. So, I surprised myself today and kind of wondered why I make little rules for myself when I loathe others making them for me.

Writing What I Feel Like

It’s Thanksgiving. I haven’t been feeling well so I stayed home and slept most of the day. When I woke up I felt like making meat loaf and now I’m waiting for it to be ready to take out of the oven. It’s only the second time I’ve used this particular recipe and this time I didn’t leave out any of the ingredients so I’m thinking I’ll really like it.

Every once in awhile, something pops onto my radar regarding astrology. Today is one of those auspicious times. There’s a Sagittarius Solar Eclipse and New Moon. I’ve noticed New Moon’s are good for beginnings. In fact I began this blog during a New Moon almost a year ago and had fun with it until summer when I craved being out in the sunshine.

The internet reading I’ve done indicates this is a special Solar Eclipse. I’m not going to explain why–you can take my word for it. Or not.

Wherever the Solar Eclipse falls in a natal chart, is an area where it’s like a graduation now. Where more can be possible and restrictions fall away. Of course, these things aren’t handed out on a silver platter. I’m a believer in responsibility and self-authority.

Anyway, it happens to fall in my fifth house. Yes, I’ve had a natal chart professionally done. The fifth house is generally referred to as the one of creativity, fun, love, etc. Now that intrigued me. The information is often presented in a dry and serious manner. Doing a quick internet search, I found information about the fifth house that is more juicy and inspiring. The information is by Dana Gerhardt and she helps explain it by writing about the film Chocolat.

Very timely for me to read. There are many, many things I appreciate in this life. Right now I feel fortunate that this information is helping me to notice a fresh start. And I’m really looking forward to the meat loaf too.