(Feb 13/16) “The Dream (Stealing) Police Are Full Of Cheap Tricks…”

Well, hello Wonderfuls!  I was very much hoping our paths would cross again, so I brought some extra food for thought.  And, if you have adventurous tastes, perhaps on some level you can appreciate my most recent butter-finger fragments.

Beeffeffs, you’ll recall from my last/first sharing, are clumsily-grasped understandings (none of the elegance of “ah-ha moments”, but equally powerful).

Second, don’t worry: I’ll spare you the less savoury details.  Suffice it to say I found myself intensely reluctant to tackle a recurring and highly-doable task.  It was one of those—I can move mountains, yet stumble over molehills—conundrums that trip me up sometimes.

Increasingly stressed-out, and highly doubtful I’d ever unscrew the lid of this jar of pickles, I decided to take a rational approach.  Perhaps you know it—it’s called the, Over-Night-Will-Make-It-Right…you retire to bed in hopes that, upon waking, what the elves did for the cobbler, fate has done for you…

Okay, hearing myself just now, I must admit that sometimes I’m given to obscure frames of reference.

This one stems from a delightful Grimm’s fairy tale, whereby, having given most of what he has to others, a poor shoemaker has only enough leather for one more pair of shoes.  He makes the cut-outs (in my case, a metaphor for a collection of carefully-crafted forebodings and pinking-sheared/jagged anxieties), goes to bed and wakes to find that everything is magnificent as magic…his work has been done, and he prospers like a boss.

However, highly introspective and intimately familiar with my particular brand of…ahem…complexity, I was blind-sided when, in all its impossible glory, my well-heeled answer finally came sauntering into view—and boy was it rich!

Yes, Terrifics, in that moment, and without a debt, I knew just what kind of trouble I was borrowing.  Despite the clanging protests that clogged up my spiralling thoughts, any initial confusion was over-ridden by the horribly-undeniable rightness of it all…

“Perfectionism?!  What?! Me…me?!  A perfectionist?!?!  Perfectionism by definition implies the     absurd notion that one could ever be perfect…which I know I’m most certainly not!”

Given hindsight, my overly-ambitious dismay should have been a huge clue that perfectionism is anything but rational.  It’s born of self-recriminations, criticisms, and unrealistic expectations—and its pursuit becomes a deflection that steers us away from our authentic (imperfect) selves.

Thankfully, I can report another HOWEVER, because—once I picked my proverbial jaw up off the floor—I was able to reflect on childhood lessons that, at times, still come in to play.

And, so, the mysteries of my mind began to unravel.

Early warnings that the necessity of working twice as hard will result in getting half the credit (which, however well-meaning, leaves you feeling ten times as bad) was followed by a subsequent learning.  Specifically, when this prediction fails, you just might become the target of those who see your over-achievements as some kind of threat.

Now, aside from the fact that I subscribe to the quote, “I’m not in competition with anyone: I want us all to win”, I’m spotlight ambivalent.  That is to say, driven to succeed/to help others succeed, I’m drawn to the light—but can become really uncomfortable when others point out how brightly I shine.  This is when I become most susceptible to self-deprecation and self-sabotage.

A parallel process is the moment when an earnest child finally learns to ride a bike, and her elated parents exclaim with delight.  Suddenly self-conscious, she remembers to be insecure, gets all panicked, wobbly, and topples herself over before she gathers enough speed to hurt herself.

Thankfully, committed to freeing myself from destructive habits, my pursuit of greater understanding and courage inspires a spoonful-of-sugar creativity.  For, seeing the lighter side of growth blunts the rough edges that make intimidation a shoe-in for my—get it all right, right now!—urgency.  In this way, I can stay the course…and, because I know that the world is better for having you in it, I have a responsibility to encourage you to stay true to your course as well.

So, for what it’s worth.  Here’s a hard-won lesson.

When traveling the path of least resistance (defined paradoxically as trying too hard, and not hard enough), my ensuing devolvement is an unflinching reminder that I’m beside myself because I won’t get out of my own way.  The issue is, much like Gizmo, I can be terribly afraid of bright light…and this observation will only make sense if you’ve seen the (1984) movie, “Gremlins”; but stay with me if you will: from here on, the news gets much bett…

We interrupt the regularly scheduled musings to bring the latest news in a long series of scandalier take-downs.  Dubbed the Chumbawamba Chumps, these scofflaws refuse to stay in their place and seek to put hitches and glitches in the Too-Big-For-Your-Britches legislation.

Consequently, we’ve changed the names of these repeat offenders to further isolate them as they “get knocked down, but get up again” because they refuse to fall in line.

Chief Offender will advise them of their transgressions.

“Show-Off McShowy, you have run afoul of the Grease Police, elite members of the Grease Keepers who patrol any number of slippery slopes—you have once again been caught acting shady while dimming your light.  This misstep constitutes trespassing; and ignorance of Darwin’s (dog-eat-dog) law allows no ground for a heel.

In light of repeated protests, your attempted self-diminishments are evidence of evasive maneuvers; proof that—on some level—you suspect that you have value/are a threat to status quo.  Therefore, you are being arrested for development…

Raise your hands in supplication, declare and surrender all gifts, and prepare yourself for a–strip you of your talent–search.  If lucky, once judged, you will be released on your own recognizance—provided you report to, and applaud all who have, or will, give testimony against you. 

Furthermore; all undeclared dreams are considered contraband.  Your ball-and-chain ankle bracelet will alert the authorities should you dare beyond designated coloring lines; and you must report to your appropriation officer on a regularly-random basis.

Any violations of these conditions will put you at significant risk of never again being     included in mainstream society; doomed to swim against the tide for the remainder of your days. 

Do you understand these rights as the have been imposed upon you?”

Take-down complete, we now return you to whatever you were tuned in to (for some reason, we cannot decipher the strangely-coded messages that has been relayed). Over and out.

Humbly, Amazers, here’s the moral of my message:

Giving, while reserving plenty of what makes us joyful and peaceful, is challenging enough.  We can’t be expected to give our best while putting undo pressure on ourselves to be more and less of what we are not designed for.  Nor can we allow haters to intimidate us.

Please think of it this way.

In the same way we leave the lights on so that—thinking we are present, burglars won’t try to invade our homes and rob us of the valuables they don’t want to earn for themselves—we can shine our lights so brightly that thieves will not risk being seen for who they are…

Shine so brightly that our family, friends, and conscientious passers-by will automatically come to investigate if they see our lights are dimmed…and, will marshal their support-reserves if they suspect we are burning out.

And, in a show of grateful reciprocity, let’s show our world-wide neighbors much love by switching on to full effect.

 Balance…Beam!

Until next time, Dazzlers, God bless you and your loves.

Affectionately,

Truly

P.S.  I almost forget to explain that “The Dream Police” is a (1979) hit by (1973) band Cheap Trick; and  Chumbawamba is a (1982) British band with an awesome celebratory song about resilience (1988, “Tubthumping”…lyrics include, “I get knocked down, but I get up again, you are never gonna keep me down…”).  Thanks for the dates, Wikipedia.

 

 

 

 

 

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23 thoughts on “(Feb 13/16) “The Dream (Stealing) Police Are Full Of Cheap Tricks…”

    1. Thank you so very much….I read your comment this morning, before work and it set the tone for a wonderful day. Thank you for your generosity. You gave me a real boost of confidence (I love my writing, most days, but wasn’t sure if others would ‘get it’). It is easy to second-guess ourselves sometimes…that is part of the creative process. Glad we can encourage each other 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  1. The Dream Police reminded me instantly of a Jethro Tull song called “The Mouse Police.” They never sleep either if the lyrics are to be believed.

    Reading this also made me think how far you have come form here. Mountains and molehills, an air of procrastinating and. dare I say, task avoiding. Look at you now though; an entirely different existence. I think old posts can serve to really put life into perspective. I wonder, if you were to write this one now, what would it say?

    The message is still very good though; over pressure on ourselves is not wise. In fact this message, while less pertinent to us perhaps, is still finding new audiences as minds trip and stumble on their journey through life. I wish it were not so, but if words such as these seek to in-isolate people in need of a boost then recycling this post was no bad thing at all!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve never heard of this song (and am only vaguely familiar with Jethro Tull), but I googled the lyrics….very artistic and deep 🙂
      And, yes, I have grown over this past year, which just proves that writing/sharing and being supported by those who can relate and/or empathize–while I support those in the same boat–has been just the thing to help me grow. Given that the challenges I spoke to are universal, my hope is that–as you point out–the message is timeless…regardless of the struggle, the key is for each of us to do our best to be our best and to support each other in that endeavor. Thanks for reading/commenting my friend 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. YouTube it; they are one of my all time favourite bands 🙂

        I rather think the difference between then and now is remarkable; it shows in your post content and the improvement in the way you articulate it. I think your writing has grown tremendously too.

        Totally agree; the challenge is renewed all the time in different people unfortunate enough to stumble on their life journey. Even if we escape, being there should be used to help others through empathy and support. Some want it and some are not quite at that stage yet, but none need to feel isolated and alone. That is a most awful feeling. Keep up the good work 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I tried Googling the song yesterday, but can only find a cover version of it. On another note, what I appreciate about the progression of my blog/writing is the increasing comfort I have…just as with any friendship/connection, I’m discovering the aspects of myself/thoughts/perspectives–and world–that make me a better and better me. That is what connections are meant to do…bring out our best and make us better for the chance to connect with others 🙂 And, yes….as you say…be willing to reach for those who need a helping hand….the lyric comes to mind….”Lean on my when you’re not strong…and I’ll help you carry on–for, it won’t be long ’til I’m gonna need somebody to lean on.” 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      3. My therapist once said that to make sense of thoughts you need sounding boards, specially in low mood because your on thoughts need evidencing not just being taken as they are. I think blog comments can deliver that in part. Especially discussions and validity on what we are writing. Time I the best thing anyone can give in my opinion. To talk or listen. Very wise lyrics to in this context 😊

        Liked by 1 person

      4. The, “no (person) is an island” reality…however, sharing with others sometimes requires courage that some people can’t muster….a big part of my sharing is to help others feel like they aren’t alone–and to do so in an entertaining way…a way that explores the lighter side of coming to terms with our challenges–while highlighting our potential for increased magnificence. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Yes it does require courage you are quite right. Especially on a blog because at first you know nobody and its throwing things out to strangers that might be negative. My writing was definitely in that zone. In some ways its harder than submitting it. The latter merely says yes or no, on a public domain you can get feedback on all levels. Best not talk myself into anxiety here!!

        I think you have a gift for relating to people; its possibly why you have the job you do too. I also think you have the capacity to do serious posts as well as the humorous ones if you want to try and tease out those that might read but are not brave enough to comment.

        It might be you capture those who are “ready” to make the change???

        Liked by 1 person

      6. Agreed…sorry I didn’t see this message earlier…thanks for taking the time and energy to share your thoughts with me…you are wise and appreciated…by the way, I wrote a non-comedic post earlier today 🙂 I’m looking forward to reading a post from you 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      7. I’m a shade behind with mine although I have a few award based ones to do and have an author spotlight scheduled and have now received information for another. Then there’s retheme blog and….the list rambles as much as I do !!

        Liked by 1 person

      8. I have every faith in you, Gary….things may not always seem like they are moving in the right direction, but it will all turn out right even if there are confusing/doubt-igniting twists in the meantime. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      9. I think they are, but I’d rather it was a bit swifter!! Slow, has a tendency to catch me off guard and that “other” mind fights to get back in! Mind you schools out so still adjusting to the new routine too. Thank you for your optimistic words though; they are really appreciated 🙂

        Like

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