Doing Nothing No More

Sometimes I find myself paralyzed by indecision. I have so many things I want to do but I end up doing nothing. I think I fear not being able to finish something so I never start. The promise of what could be completed and the hope of that future completion is a powerful sedative. The dream becomes the goal rather than the realization of the dream. When you do nothing with your dreams, you risk nothing and you have no potential for failure.

But, at the same time, if you avoid risk and failure your whole life, then you risk failure of your life.

So what’s the solution? Is there a magic bullet that gets a person motivated and kicks them into gear? Yes and no. There are many motivators in the world but I don’t think there are any universal ones. I’ve found that the best solution and the one that comes closest to working for everyone is to just start moving.

Make a single brush stroke, write one line of code/poetry/your story, take a picture, get a person’s phone number out, or put one thing away. Each of these things is an accomplishment in itself and can then act as a springboard for doing more. Your brain will feel the pleasure of an accomplishment and will crave more. This craving will almost always be more powerful than the sedative of dreaming without doing.

Tactile Warning Devices

This is a tactile warning device, also-known-as truncated domes. Truncated domes are a much better description since they actually are domes with their tops cut flat. They are meant to be a warning to anyone stepping on them or rolling over them that they are about to enter a street or parking lot.

However, the word tactile means a sense of touch. Unless you are down on your hands and knees, running your hands across the truncated domes, you’re actually feeling them (through your feet or bottom), not touching them. So the phrase “tactile warning device” is not entirely accurate. I just thought you ought to know.

The Wonder in the Mundane

I’ve continued my investigations into the gutters of my neighborhood and beyond and found more wonders that usually go forgotten. I’m not sure how long this will last though. I like looking down to the small things around me but sometimes you have to look up and notice the larger world around you.

The trick is to see it all and not neglect any one part. Of course, I’m much more comfortable droning through life not noticing anything around me. But comfort is boring and doesn’t help you grow. I have to constantly fight the tendency to shut off the thinking part of my brain.

That’s one of the benefits of conciously looking for the minutae around you; finding the wonder in the mundane; enriching your life with the world that’s actually around you that your brain often filters out as unnecessary. So for now I’ll keep looking to the gutter as a way of lifting myself above complacency.

Avoiding a Desaturated Life

There really isn’t much color most of the places you go to. You really have to search for color and what color you do find usually isn’t well placed or interesting. Or it’s muted and not very vibrant. You might be able to see more color when you’re downtown but that’s because people are trying to sell you something so they try to shock your senses and get you to say wow, that stands out so I should buy it. But in the suburbs you just don’t find any people willing to do more than a red plastic bird feeder or a yellow “Pesticides have been applied to the lawn” stake.

I noticed on my walk today that most of the world around is made up primarily of neutral colors. The houses are whites, gray, and browns. The majority of cars on the road seem white, black or gray. When you do see a lot of colors all in one place they tend to look ugly because people haven’t thought about complimentary colors or how the colors are composed together.

Maybe that’s why so many people are into over saturating their photos on Instagram or doing HDR photography on Flickr. They want to pull out what little color they can find and show it to the world.

Now, I do have to admit, today was a cloudy, rainy day in my part of the world. And, it’s still winter so things probably seem more muted and dull to me. Thankfully, Spring is just around the corner and life is starting to spring up around us now that the weather is warming slightly. But right now, you really have to work at it to see it. Here’s a street corner I passed by the other day:

It would have been very easy to just pass by this scene and disregard it. But I stopped because I knew that in most places, if you come in just a little closer you can find some pretty amazing things. Sure enough, as I got down to ground level I was able to discover this:

This is just to show that even though the world around might look colorless, if you change perspective, and prioritize mindfuln of your surroundings, you can find beauty almost anywhere.