The consequences of tracing blueprints.
Yes, you should have a vision. A plan. Direction. You should have an idea of where you want to be and what you want your life to look like. You’ve seen it in videos accompanied by inspirational music. Everyone says the same thing. You need to see it in order to achieve it. No, not just see it. Feel it, in your bones. As if it’s already happened.
I’ve laid on my living room floor with a timer visualizing this shit for years. It’s always the same. Panning across posters of New York Times best seller books I have written, hanging on my walls like movies while I sip morning coffee and take in the gentle breeze of Los Angeles sprawled below me. Behind the scenes, teams, companies and parnterships all positioned to change the way we change. I have a garage with motorcycles, a backyard, and the rare feeling produced when the outline of what you want and reality line up perfectly. The feeling that you’ve “made it”. That you’ve finally reached the island. That you have arrived. And you can stop dreaming now.
Dreaming is something I’ve been doing since I was a kid watching Richie Rich cartoons. This is America and you’re supposed to dream. Anything’s possible here. You don’t need to be anyone to be someone. And you gotta see that shit. Get obsessed with it. You can’t have anything unless you dream it first.
But as you grow up you learn that “making it” is a myth, a moving target. There is no such thing. When you get there, you just want more or different. And there is a fine line between having a healthy vision of your future and obessing about it so much that nothing else matters, including the present.
I cross that line often.
It’s 5:15am on a Saturday and I’m realizing how much my future tripping affects my relationships. I can be extremely present, noticing the subtle crack in one’s voice to seeing thoughts playing like a flipbook from a single glimpse in one’s eyes. Becausing I’m fully there, paying attention. I can laugh and have pillow fights and hold someone until I forget I’m there. Because I’m there, paying attention. Or I can be completely absent, like yesterday’s wind. Lost. In my head. Thinking about the future and all the what ifs. I tune in and out, like a foregin TV channel. As I write this, I flashback to many of my previous relationships and realize the times I was white noise. They were right. And it makes me sad. Mad at myself.
The visual I mentioned above with the book posters and the breeze is something I’ve been obsessed with for a while now. It is the byproduct of working hard and doing everything I can to spread a dialogue and challenge people’s thinking. With it comes a real home. One worth buying real furniture for becasue I’ve been hopping around Los Angeles my entire life. Never had a place I could call my home. My life has been transitional living. A home with the kind of furniture you would call “pieces”. I got this piece at the flea market. I got this piece on Melrose. Like art. But this vision is starting to fade now. On purpose. I’m letting it go. Not because I don’t think it’s obtainable or I don’t want it. But rather because you have to let things go and allow room for magic. If there’s one thing I’ve learned about life and the universe and how things play out, it’s that you can’t hold on to anything for too long. Yes, you must know what you want and what direction you want to go in but then you have to let it go. And maybe that’s the part no one talks about. Letting it go. I’ve learned that when you hold onto blueprints so tightly for so long, you go from feeling fueled and empowered to desparate and powerless. You create expectation cliffs that you eventually fall off. And it can be crushing.
See your future but then let it go and trust that it will unfold the way it’s meant to.
This is where I’m trying to pull from these days.
I do believe we can manifest things. Of course, with hard work, vision, and a fire in your belly. When you triple down on and work your ass off to hone your gifts and position yourself toward your purpose, stars line up. Things begin to happen seamlessly. But they rarely come in the time we want or the way we imagined.
So we must let go or we’ll stay trapped and stunted. And this letting go is one of the hardest things to do in life. It means you have to have faith. It means you have to trust your story. It also means you have to accept, not want more or different but appreciate what’s in front of you. It’s the only way to live or you won’t live. You’ll just be thinking a lot which creates a ticking clock. A lit fuse that generates panic. Stripping you of your power and the ability to be grateful. It hardens your heart. Turns you invisible. You start to lose yourself. Feel less than, because you’re not where you want to be. Then you may compromise who you are and what you stand for. Start to feel gross. Start loving someone else’s story. And denying yours. Moments will be lost. You may become desperate and your gifts may become watered down. You may start missing life because you’re so busy trying to trace a picture in your head.
Suddenly you’re 45. Your pants don’t fit like they used to. You have food allergies. You see strange lines on your face. You need glasses, again.
Here’s what I know. Because it keeps happening to me. Three years from now, you’ll look back and realize you should have been more present. Because the sky never fell. You are still here and you are still you. Hopefully, some good things happened. Or maybe not. Because again, the universe doesn’t deliver on your time. Maybe nothing happened except time. And if that’s the case, you will regret that you weren’t here. That you didn’t see the sprinkled gold along the way. You didn’t appreciate things. People. Moments. Experiences. You were too busy thinking. Obsessing about everything you don’t have. And by doing so, lost what you did.
I hope you read that again because I’m realizing that life really is like water. It flows. You can’t hold it. You either swim or drown, depending on what’s going on in your head. I don’t have to know everything. I don’t have to obsess about things and how they’re going to play out. I can take what is, everything that is in front of me right now, and lean into it fully. Even if it’s not what I want or where I want to be, because let’s face it. It will never be. Because like I mentioned above, our success target is always moving. It changes as we change and our defintions change. So that’s what swimming looks like. Or I can dwell and obsess and drown. Simply put, suffer.
So what does it look like to swim? Well, let’s start with this: Fuck where you see yourself in three years. You know where you want to be. You’ve been obsessing about it for the last decade. Drop it and focus on living. Show the fuck up. Stop wishing and pausing life until your dreams happen, until you get what you want. Be here. Ground yourself. Notice. Feel something. Breathe. Focus on what matters the most to you. Hang your life on that. How can you give? What you can leave behind? Who can you impact? I’m not saying compromise yourself and your goals. But if you believe your life and story is greater than you, live that way instead of constantly running and chasing. Trust it and come back to the here and now, where life is.
Have visions but don’t draw them with Sharpie. Have dreams and go after them with everything you’ve got. But always leave room for magic. Or there won’t be any.
CALL TO ACTION
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