…because no one says no to an Astronaut.
But seriously, consider the average person. He or she is, as implied, average. She has a job she can do reasonably well, that he or she has learned to do by, well, doing it. She has one, a maximum of two hobbies she does all right in – one better than the other. He or she has predictable taste in movies and music that she never indulges in outside of simple consumption.
But each one of these, every one of them (you? us?) dreams, and they dream BIG. While dreams of monetary success and personal bliss (get married, nice car, house, wife…the classic) are uniform, there is one kind of dreaming whose fatality we consistently ignore, and it hinders us in ever achieving it – the dream of DOING.
To those of you who read this and still have no idea what I am talking about, consider yourselves lucky – your needs and dreams cover the bottoms the Maslow pyramid neatly, and are not bothered by the more ephemeral top. You’re not stupid; you’re just pragmatic – your dreams take little maintenance. Read on only if you’re interested on an analysis of someone completely different to you.
Who AM I talking about? I’m talking about the “creatives”. I am talking about you (usually artistically inclined) wishful thinkers. Yes, you. The ones who see a beautiful painting and think “Wow. I wish I could paint like this”
And there it is. Like a thorn festering in a soul, but not hurting – because if it hurt, you’d remove it. You don’t think “This is an amazing painting. I’m going to learn how to paint like this” No. You think “I WISH I could paint like this” I wish. Wishing, dreaming. What’s the problem with dreaming? It’s a two part problem.
The first part deals with the brain’s innate ability to ignore effort, if possible. What your guile filled gray mass does is that it simply equates THINKING and IMAGINING yourself doing something (“Oh, wouldn’t it be awesome if I could do this!”) – as ACTUALLY DOING IT.
Crazy, right? No...Not really. Just stupid. Lets go to part two.
The second part deals with your (and my) inability to prioritize. At one point you realize that it is not possible to learn karate, dancing, painting and guitar, all at master lever – or if it is, it is not only going to take effort, but it will have to be done ONE AT A TIME. Time – meaning asides effort, you will need to invest TIME. That’s right motherfuckers; this is not the Matrix (I know kung fu!) – you will actually need to sacrifice your time and effort, ONE BY ONE, with very little gain short term, and with the long time gain so far you will immediately get dispirited.
So what will you do? You will imagine. You will use the one thing you’re actually really good at, dreaming, and imagine yourself doing those things you want to do. Then you will tap yourself on the back, and continue not doing it. This is why kids are better at learning – because circumstance forces them to DO THINGS instead of think of them. Don’t worry – kids dream all the time. It’s just that, unlike adults, these dreams have very little to do with what they DO – that stuff is governed by their parents. Read a book. Go to ballet. Learn pottery. Do. Do. Do. Do.
The problem is that at one point this sort of governance, direction, guidance, call-it-what-you-will – it stops. There is a transitional phase and then YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO BE THE ONE DOING IT TO YOUR CHILD.
In effect, no one is forcing you to do anything anymore, and that sucks. Because we dreamers (for lack of a less hippie term) are not big on doing. We're VERY big on dreaming but, as demonstrated, doing was something we were used to be told, not having to conjure up motivation ourselves.
What? Go do something for two years with no visible gain till the two years pass? And ONLY then go on to do that other thing you wanted to know how to do, and then ALSO see no results for two years? I don’t like that. Give me back my lolly.
If you are offended by this text, or consider yourself above the mentioned type of Homo sapiens – good. If you’ve noticed a certain note of bitterness or resentment towards ‘them’ in this text – good. It is a product of self-loathing and an attempt to provide constructive criticism to myself (and others) Consider it a less tacky self help pamphlet. I’ll put a little “fuck you” here, on the end, just to make it edgy. Funny thing is - it’s directed at me.