Don’t Just Do Something, Sit There!
We have a five pound Pomeranian named Macaroon, yes – like the coconut cookie! He rules our roost with his leonine mane and black teddy bear eyes. If you know anything about Pomeranians, they have no clue they are as large as a lampshade. They believe they can total a T-Rex…or at least bark him to death.
Macaroon is a true performer, a Michael Jackson in fur. He is constantly entertaining himself and us, as well. One of his favorite tricks is to spin in circles. Our joyful response to his antics always comes with a price, of course. He always expects a dog biscuit (which we call a “cookie!”) In Mac’s world, there are no free shows here. This pup is a very shrewd businessman.
Soon after we married, I heard my wife exclaim, “Sweetie, spin if you want a cookie!” Since I loved Kathy’s baking, I came flying down the hall, hurtled myself into the kitchen and spun so rapidly I smashed into the kitchen table. As I lay there shaking off my dizziness, my wife laughed and handed me… a dog biscuit. Macaroon was not amused. The little dude does not share his stage with anyone, least of all me.
Wooden’s famous maxim, “Never confuse activity with achievement.” We are not a society focused on achievement but of constant motion. The symptoms of this frenetic pace we follow are busyness, instant gratification, short attention spans, and a shoddy work ethic all laced with insane quantities of caffeine. We put Starbucks on the map. Unfortunately.
Someone once stupidly said, “Whenever in doubt, pedal twice as fast.” That is as fruitless as it is insane. By doing so we are ignoring John
Whenever I watch Macaroon spin in circles I am reminded how I feel when my life imitates his art. He is having fun. He is a dog. I am a human trying to maintain and build my career success using his methods. What is wrong with this picture? So, despite my best intentions, I sometimes feel overwhelmed and stressed out, making little progress in the process. Do you ever feel that way? Are we all competing for the Almighty Biscuit? Have our lives become so routine that we have embraced the ongoing rut of the same daily activities, the same schedule, the same ineffectual habits and the same reluctance to stop and think about what the heck we are doing? Maybe, it frustrates you and me that we are compelled to repeat these patterns (like spinning around in circles) each day, as we seemingly accomplish nothing. We weren’t always like this.
Do you remember as a child becoming so swept away in a thought that time actually stood still? Do you remember how it felt to be mesmerized by something as simple as a balloon or a ladybug that you could stare and focus on it for hours while everything else around you became nonexistent? What has happened to us? Do you remember how wonderful daydreaming felt when we allowed ourselves the luxury of being a child? Why does daydreaming stop as we get older? Why do we lose the ability to be captivated by the moment? Why have we ceased cultivating our imaginations? I believe it’s because we feel guilty. We have been taught that if we take too much time to dream, engage in imaginary ventures or be still for too long, we are neglecting our responsibilities. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Becoming “terminally adult” is not responsibility, it is a death knell to the budding beauty of our potential as human beings. We were never meant to pedal twice as fast, we were created to dismount from our bicycle on life’s ride, toss it to the ground and lay under a shade tree while thinking, meditating, adjusting and honing our minds and souls for future greatness.
I ask you the most important question now, “What do you want to be when you grow up?”
Before you react to that query, put aside your adult mindset and think as a child for a moment. Open your mind to all your possibilities. Forget about being in a box, evaporate it. Let nothing hold you back and sneer at all the boundaries that have limited you for so much of your life. Learn to dream again; if you don’t, you will never have to fear dying, because you already have.