Thursday, July 13, 2006

What matters most is how well you walk through the fire

Does anybody have a particular time of the year when a major change in your life tends to happen? For me, they tend to happen in the mid-summer or early fall.

Four years ago this month, I was informed by my roommate that a friend of his was moving into our place -- implying that I had to move out. Scrambling, I found a nice and inexpensive apartment in north Dallas and have lived in the town ever since. Almost three years ago, I felt like my relationship with one band had ended and I would find myself let go from the band just a couple of months later. Almost two years ago, as I was moving into the place I live in now, I had to leave one of the companies I worked for. I couldn't put this change off any longer and when my other job offered me a full-time job, I bolted. And this all happened as I was moving in August with no fear that this was the right move for me. So why am I bringing this up now? Well, this feeling has come back.

I'm not moving to a new place to live, but I'm ready to find a new job sooner rather than later. Where this job is has yet to be determined. I know people tell you that the ideal situation is to find a job while you already have a job, but this change can't keep getting put off. Finding any job is a job in itself and I'm tired of making excuses for myself. As I've said before, mud may be easy to be in because it's familiar, but it's still mud.

I think feeling afraid of making a change is a natural thing, but a major part of having courage is doing something without knowing what the full outcome will be. That's just the experience of life in itself, so why do people stay at bay with opposing voices in their head and muddy familiarity? The outcome of change is infinite, but people (including myself) tend to think that a negative outcome is more likely than a positive one. Well, I have to remind myself that the chances of a positive outcome are about as equal to a negative one, so I have to choose which perspective to think in.

These kinds of changes in life are not some spur-of-the-moment kinds of deals for me. A lot of thinking goes into why I think such change needs to occur, but that comes with a number of excuses too. When the options to stay have run out, then I think that's when I should move on. Sounds incredibly cut and dry right? Well, living through this is not.

In all of the previous bands I've been in, this feeling has always happened. A fact I tend to overlook is that every band I joined afterwards was a better situation and experience for me. My first couple of bands were just friends who came over to screw around on their instruments, but then I played in a band that wrote real songs and played shows. In college, after I had joined a band that let me go two weeks after I joined, I helped start what would become the 11:30s, a band that really forged the template of what kind of band I like to be in. From the 11:30s came Voigt and after Voigt came my current band, Ashburne Glen. Whenever we play together (whether it's in the practice room or onstage), I feel really happy and have a lot of fun, but I don't think I would be able to appreciate this had I not been in bands before. I think this kind of experience can translate into many other aspects of life (whether in a personal relationship, a job, and so on).

So, the motivation is there mentally, but action is probably the single most important way to make something happen. Don't let the commercials and banner ads fool you, online job listings are probably not the best ways to find something. I think applying a lot of the skills I've learned with doing this book are really finally kicking into gear in other aspects of my life. There were people that I thought I could never reach, but given some time and persistence, I got ahold of most of them. Maybe that explains why I feel so invigorated whenever I do an interview . . .

The point is this, you can lay in misery with what is handed to you. Be it bland Top 40 pop, cookie-cutter star vehicles, shallow game shows/soap operas with "reality" in their description or TV networks with one hour of news and 23 hours of speculation; that's easy. For some, they aren't fine with whatever washes ashore. They have to find what they want, but that takes their own will and desire to do such.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

agreed. i've persevered through various situations, be it writing partners who decided to write w/the man upstairs, not that there's anything wrong w/that. or careerists, women, dope, indifference etcetera... but since i formed strident zend a couple of years ago, for some reason, the other shoe fell, finally. this outfit is more of a feast of friends than anything else. if anyone cares to check out the new stuff, it can be currently be had over at texas gigs.
i was'nt conscious of theme park before, but i must say its rather enjoyable. keep up the good fight.