Benjamin Disraeli: “Nothing can resist the human will that will stake even its existence on its stated purpose.” Simply put, I’ll do it, or die trying.
Steve Pavlina, a well known blogger in the area of personal development is writing an interesting series of articles related to a 30 day trial he is doing. For 30 days he does something to see if it is worth doing after that. Right now he is immediately acting on any inspiration he gets, even if it means delaying eating when he is hungry. He is also exploring subjective reality – the idea that we are in a ‘dream world’ and that what happens in our lives is a projection of our consciousness. I have no fear of exploration, so both of these are worthy of my time.
Let’s start with the inspiration part. There’s no doubt in my mind that I’ve been making some major shifts in the past few years. In April, 2008, I created Dr. Jerm, a website dedicated to self improvement. I got inspired and created it – all of the content in a few months. It was rigorous, but quite different than what I normally was accustomed to doing. I normally was a get by person who would have never done that. But I had a moment earlier that year where I was disgusted with myself and playing World of Warcraft and not reaching my full potential.
I then created a blog for Dr. Jerm. Blogging regularly was also something I had never done before. And I did so for about a year before I felt inspired to move on to other ideas. One of my favorite things to write about on that blog was the meeting of the imaginary master mind. This was simply a meeting with leaders of the world today, all in my head, as if they were right there with me around a large conference table.
I then completed the P90X extreme fitness program in the beginning of 2009. My wife and I even made a blog about it. This was another shift in my reality. I’d never had six pack abs or looked like I did at the end of it. I look back and can see inspiration playing a major role in that decision. It seems a string of significant events was beginning to come together. All starting with my disgust in playing World of Warcraft and not realizing my potential.
I finished an over 300 page fiction/fantasy novel in the middle of 2009. This was another major milestone for me. I look back and I did more in a year and a half than in the previous 30 years of my life. This is astounding to me. Something is happening within me. There is a force stirring. I’m not sure what it is…
What came next? Some challenges beyond anything I’d ever experienced. September 2009 was my first experience with a kidney stone that eventually required a knock me out surgery to take out due to fever and infection. I can recall vividly my wife and I in our house. I literally was curled up like a crab, shivering, and sobbing. I was far from in control of my emotions, often yelling out swears as I writhed. No drug took the pain away – they only made me nauseous, which amplified the nausea from the kidney stone leading to vomiting. My wife was supportive, but my emotional outbursts due to the trauma of the experience I am sure impacted her in a way I may never realize.
Early 2010 I had lower back surgery that laid me out flat for months and continues to affect me to this day. I recall after the surgery hardly being able to move. When I laid down in bed, I was no longer able to adjust my sleeping position and I had to have my wife move me. She was again very patient with me. I married an extraordinary woman…
Were these challenges my own doing? Probably. But it’s interesting that they came at the time they did. They were coming at the time I was becoming inspired. Were they a test to see how I would react? I may never really know.
So where does that leave me today? The creation of my website here. But I am disgusted. I haven’t seen the results that I want in my life. I feel like a baseball that was knocked off a course and out of the park. But I also know that in a moment a breakthrough can occur. Change that accelerates what happens in life. This is what I am seeing from Steve Pavlina in his life. And so I am beginning the 30 day trials of inspiration and subjective reality.
How will I do this? Easy – I will keep a notebook with me at all times. When I am inspired with a thought, I will write it down. If it is something I can do in 15 minutes or less, I will go and do it, no matter what seems like a priority at the moment. If it is longer than that, I will keep it in the list and decide at the end of 30 days which I will pursue.
The inspiration part is the one that is clear, cut, and dry to me. The subjective reality is a whole new can of worms. I’m not even sure I completely understand what it means. I think it means that I will share and explore with all my might. I will treat it as a journey to truly understand the reality in which I live and the potential I have to create what I want in that reality.
My day job
I am a web developer right now. I sit in a cubicle and make web pages work. I’m good at it. I can churn out good work like no tomorrow. But I’ve begun a shift there. I am communicating my intentions to managers and people of note there. I am engaging in discussions I previously would not have. We have a talent review that our executives look at. I wrote a long dissertation on my philosophies of life and personal growth. I shared my desire to extend my reach and increase my value.
This was a very scary thing for me to do. Executives who make millions of dollars are going to read what I said personally. They might talk to me. They might not. Either way, there is no going back on what I said. I entered it into the system and clicked the ‘submit’ button and off it went for it to be reviewed and read. I have no idea what will come of it. But I knew I needed to do it without regret.
I’ve also made a shift in increasing my communication with our development team. I’m more focused on understanding each person and how to increase the value they bring. Before it was me, me me. Now it is us, us, us. In a weird sort of way I picture our team like VOLTRON – the old cartoon from the 80’s. A large mechanical robot formed by five different parts to create something much stronger than each individual could ever be. I think of us as one like this. It’s been working. We’re seeing increased results. I hope we continue to see an increase. I think this will help solidify that I am truly creating more value.
But it doesn’t stop there. The idea that I am just stuck in a day job has since long gone. My day job is turning more into a story with characters. And I am the master narrator, able to dictate events how I see fit. I think this is at the essence of subjective reality. That I have the ability to project through sheer thought and effort alone what I want to create and see it happen. So here’s what I am looking to do:
Become actively engaged in discussions with upper level management. Today it started with sitting down with my current manager and explaining my current philosophies and desire to be stretched as much as possible. In the next 30 days, I am going to walk into our CTO’s office and simply have a discussion about his philosophies and make known my intention of seeking to add value. I see this as part of the story where I am the detective who is gathering clues. Eventually I will solve mysteries and this will increase the value I bring and the reach I have, which is my ultimate goal.
Fear and Doubt
I can’t ignore that I am afraid and have doubts. I’m afraid of what my wife might think of my strange thoughts and ideas. I wonder what my family members might think. I wonder what consequences I might see at work because of my new way of thinking and getting involved in so many areas. But really I can’t accept anything else. I must extend my reach as far as I can. I will create as much as I can for as long as I can. I will do it or die trying.
This is another moment where there really is no turning back. You don’t make intentions known like this and run away. It really is like the Matrix. You take the red pill or the blue pill. The red pill leads down a path of no return. I’m willing to accept whatever this new path is leading me to. What is the extent of what one man can do with a little effort, willingness to try, and a stake of my existence that I can create in ways that stagger my imagination.
The trial is to simply capture all inspiration. I think of it like capturing fire flies in a jar when I was younger. Every inspirational idea must be written down. This may be hard. It may disrupt my productivity at work. But that’s okay. I’m willing to take that risk because there’s probably something within me that will surface as a result of doing this that I would have missed otherwise.
As for the subjective reality, I am going to approach life as a story where I am an explorer, a narrator, who dictates events with ease and grace. Like a magician who conjures up the magic he needs in any given situation, this is how I will view my home and work life. This is the scary part. What if I can’t do it? What if it gets me fired? There’s only one way to find out – to go and do it with all my might and accept whatever outcome happens.
I’m looking forward to sharing this adventure with all of you. Is it possible to accelerate results in reality to a point that in 30 days from now I’m in a new place of profound significance? Will I have an even better relationship with my wife and family? Will I invent something new that helps the many? Will I converse with the executives of the company I work for at my day job?
A Final Thought
I have a twin brother, Jeff. For some of you this may be new news. A couple months ago, I shared with him a website that made some shifts in the way I viewed life and the future. In just two months since then, he has a website that’s jumped from a few hundred visitors a day to almost 11,000 a day. That’s an important number for those of you who track website statistics for your own website. Most websites achieve the 40 to 50 a day mark. The fact that he has achieved that level of success is a clue to me that I am projecting something right in my own reality and it has affected someone. I may share his website with you, but I am not inspired to do so at this time, so I won’t :) If I am along this 30 day journey though, I’ll link it.