Ecopsychology: Restoring the earth, healing the mind

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Tasmania’s ancient forests

Years back when studying communications and psychology at university I wrote a thesis on Ecopsychology. At the time ecopsychology was a fairly obscure arm of psychology and my lecturers had never heard of it.

Ecopsychology explores the synergistic relation between personal health and well-being and the health and well-being of the Earth. It’s an interdisciplinary field at the intersection of psychology, ecology and environmental philosophy. 

Ecopsychologists theorize that human beings have become disconnected from the natural environment which significantly contributes to widespread unhappiness. They also theorize that we all have a collective eco-unconscious which is aware at some level of our current environmental crisis. This deep, sometimes repressed, sense of urgency to take action and protect our species can express itself as “anxiety” and “depression.” In other words if the planet is suffering so too do we as individuals on some level.

In my thesis I suggested that the environment movement might have a greater impact if they were to apply the principles of ecopsychology to their public relations and advertising campaigns. That reconnecting people to their ecological unconscious would help ignite their passion to protect nature and preserve our own species.

A conservation organisation I was working for at the time took these ideas onboard with enthusiasm and had great success applying ecopsychological principles to their campaigns. Traditionally their marketing messages had been mainly fear based; filled with horrific images of environmental destruction, clear felled landscapes, toxic rivers, uranium mining disasters and so on. Similar to quit smoking campaigns the idea was to create a sense of urgency to act now and change.

Whilst this kind of technique seemed to work for quit smoking organisations it wasn’t as effective for the environment sector. Planetary health was a little more complicated and hard to convey than personal health. I suggested reconnecting people to their deep ecological unconscious would trigger a genuine care for the planet and help people to find that lost part of themselves.

The PR manager rolled with this and the organisation got a whole lot of publicity about their attempts to reconnect people with nature. We saw many inspiriting images make it into mainstream media – A campaigner next to an old growth tree discussing his deep connection to forests…  an interview with the CEO discussing “sustainable extravagance” and how we could feel abundant in nature as an alternative to throw away consumerism… an advertising image featuring children playing in a nature reserve.

All of this seemed to reach people on a deeper level and I witnessed the effects of this messaging: a wider variety and higher number of people becoming involved in the organisation’s environmental campaigns.

On a more personal level, ecopsychology has enriched my life and well being by helping me understand my deeper ecological self. As I uncovered those parts of me that were deeply sad for the state of the environment I realised I needed to be on a life path that was contributing to the change I wanted to see. I realised that working towards planetary sustainability gave me a greater sense of meaning and purpose.

Ecopsychology reminded me that I’m a species in nature and need to see myself as part of the web of life rather than separate from it. I am connected to everything and effected by everything. As cheesy as it might sound. I am the world and the world is me.

Ecopsychology reminded me to walk in nature as much as possible. To hug a tree, be that metaphorically. It inspired me to consider growing my own veggies or sourcing food more locally. It gave me that push to get out and door knock for the Greens political party.

But becoming aware of your eco-unconscious also has a dark side. It’s not an easy path to walk. It’s arguably more authentic and rewarding in the end but the process can also be very painful. Many people prefer to bury their heads in the sand about what’s going on globally. But the sand is an illusion in my opinion. The truth lurks and waits for an opportunity for expression.

here's a little song I wrote

How do you process the fact that climate change and massive extinction loss threatens the web of life we depend on? How do you come to terms with the fact that future generations may not survive on this earth? It’s not easy, and for some it might be too overwhelming to think about.

For me I try to do my bit to contribute to the earth. I can’t do everything and my own personal sustainability is important too, but I try, where I can to do make an impact. I live a frugal existence. I go for quality not quantity. I try to buy food that’s grown in Australia and I support organic when I can afford it. I make my own moisturizer from olive oil. I buy much of my clothes recycled. Sometimes, when time permits I volunteer.

I’m not perfect, and sometime I’ve gone through phases where I’ve thrown it all in and decided it’s pointless: that we’re a boom an bust species destined to, at some point, perish like the dinosaurs . But as with everything there’s always a choice to be made between optimism and pessimism. And for me the seeds of possibility are more compelling.

What seed of possibility could you plant today?

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P.S. the title of this post was taken from a book by the same name.. a great read. You can check it out here

P.P.S. If you’d like to do your bit to restore the earth consider a donation to Greenpeace 

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Are wordpress likes real or generated?

I was checking out my wordpress stats today and noticed I’ve received 115 likes since starting my blog in April. As I’m new to wordpress I really had no idea what to expect in terms of being seen. I just felt the urge to write, share and explore the topic of mental health and decided to give it a crack. Every day when I log in and get notifications that people have viewed or liked a post I feel a sense of validation; like a sprinkle of pepper on my sense of motivation.

Likes

However, sometimes the likes arrive almost immediately after I post and I wonder if some of it is automated through apps. I heard of this happening on Instagram for example where you can pay for a service that sends out automatic likes to accounts with similar content. I didn’t find any such services for wordpress after a quick google search on the topic.

Does anyone know if the likes are real on wordpress? Can I safely allow my ego to get its daily validation boost from all of you good wordpress folk out there? Or do I need to get real and humbled that some of this is merely app marketing bots?

If anyone has insight on this I’d love to hear about it in the comments! Genuine comments make my day 🙂

What also makes my day are people who click on the Dr Kelly Brogan ads in my blog. I’m an affiliate and would be so thrilled to get paid for my blogging and promo efforts. I’m also supporting her work regardless of $ as I believe she has an excellent course helping thousands recover from mental illness. As with everything she’s gotta make a living too but it’s really a valuable investment in my opinion. Go check it out….

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Why you can worry less about sleep deprivation

Alarm clock showing 3 a.m.

“The brain starts to eat itself after chronic sleep deprivation” 

I saw an article with this title pop up on my facebook feed today. I refused to even click on it for a quick squiz as I’m so done with this kind of triggering BS. Imagine how young parents with a newborn keeping them up half the night are going to feel reading this? I’m not a mum but pretty much all of my friends have multiple children and so far I don’t think anyone’s brain has completely melted yet.

I used to be the sort of person who was anal about getting 8 hours+ sleep. I was super cranky if I had to get up an hour earlier than my regular routine and I was deeply concerned for my friends with newborns who didn’t sleep well!! I assumed they must have a simply miserable existence and thanked my lucky stars I didn’t have kids.

We’ve all been taught that a good night’s sleep is essential and there are thousands upon thousands of studies about the terrible effects of sleep deprivation.

It wasn’t until I had a bout of insomnia a few years back that I decided to challenge this way of thinking. I had moved to a hilly town an hour out of Melbourne and had underestimated how cold winters got out there. My place was quaint but drafty and no matter what I did and how many heaters I used it was effin freezing at night. I would wake up for hours on end with a cool draft blowing over my face and it drove me mental.

After a few weeks of this I was completely beside myself from stress and what I thought were the effects of sleep deprivation. I called a friend who also happened to be a psychotherapist and she suggested that I let go of my relationship with sleep. She said that perhaps worrying about not getting sleep was more of an issue than the lack of sleep. What if living in the country with all that fresh air meant you only needed 4 or 5 hours? she suggested. What if you got up at 4am and then had a nap in the afternoons?

These were all practical suggestions but letting go of this attachment to having a solid 8 hours seemed unthinkable to me. I’d always been told sleep was essential and deprivation dangerous.. So instead I moved from that place to my parents and started looking for a new house closer into Melbourne.

When I moved to my new place I was super anxious about the possibility of being cold at night again. My parents place had ducted heating so for a few months I’d lived in that ideal cosy comfort. I was worried that the new place might be drafty like my country pad. The previous experience of insomnia felt like a trauma in my psyche and so I was hyper vigilant about the new place as I approached the moving in date.

I knew that worrying about it had the potential of generating insomnia in of itself and I didn’t want to create a phobia situation. So I decided I need to tackle the problem head on.

What’s it going to take to get over this fear of not sleeping and being cold?

I posed this question to the universe and to myself, my higher self or the sanest part of me I could access. I let the question dance around my subconscious until I started getting ideas.

First I approached the situation on a practical level. I got prepared; I bought an excellent thermosat heater, thick and heavy curtains and DIY window insulation for winter. Then I thought about sleep and how much I really believed I needed. I thought about my friends with kids, their endless broken sleeps and crack-of-dawn starts and wondered … is there some inherent human adaptation to the broken sleep factor? I mean after all, people have been having crying babies for the history of time… would a brain really be designed to eat itself after waking up at 4am to breast feed too many times?

I googled something like “broken sleep, breast feeding, history of sleep” and that’s when I leaned about biphasic and polyphasic sleep.

Biphasic sleep is the practice of sleeping during two periods over 24 hours, while polyphasic sleep refers to sleeping multiple times – usually more than two. Each of these is in contrast to monophasic sleep, which is one period of sleep over 24 hours.” wiki

It turns out our ancestors didn’t sleep like us! Many slept in two or three broken segments. Whilst our great grandparents and great great grandparents might have slept in 8 hour blocks if you look into history prior to the 1800s the documentation on sleep more commonly describes people sleeping  in smaller blocks. For example, sleeping for three to four hours, wakefulness of two to three hours, then sleep again until morning.

sleeping-in-the-Middle-Ages3

The work of Historian Professor Roger Ekirch from Virginia State University, USA, has revealed some fascinating insights into the history of sleeping patterns and poses the question are we really deprived?

“The compressed, consolidated pattern of sleep is actually less than two centuries old. Previously most families experienced a broken pattern of sleep, with ‘first sleep’ from 9pm until midnight, an hour or so awake followed by a ‘second sleep’. This biphasic pattern was rarely viewed in a negative way. The evolution into our modern consolidated sleep pattern was something that occurred over the 19th century, a time of dramatic change with reform movements and the increasing prevalence of artificial illumination. 
April Cashin-Garbutt, Feb. 8, 2017, “A Royal Society of Medicine Meeting Review,” News-Medical Net

Ekirch suggests that people who suffer from the middle of the night insomnia may actually be reverting to this older pattern of sleep and they should be relieved of anxiety about their insomnia.. it might be a throwback to ancestral rhythms.

With such insights gaining recognition and momentum we now have polyphasic and biophasic sleep clubs, societies and advocates experimenting with this old way of sleeping and looking at ways of benefiting from these alternative cycles.

The Polyphasic Society is once such group offering sleep courses, information and e-books on exploring a more segmented sleep cycle. Some advocates claim biophasic or polyphasic sleep requires less over all sleep hours and utilize this method to get creative projects done in the middle of the night. They explore the science, REM sleep and exactly what you need within the broken hours to get the maximum sleep value possible.

Once I read all of this I became far less worried about potential insomnia. It decided to let go and let nature do it’s thing. If I couldn’t sleep. I wasn’t meant to I decided. I would, as my friend suggested, let go of my relationship to sleep and the 8 hour block.

Guess what happened when I moved into the new place?

I slept pretty darn well!!

The first few night I was a bit nervous and woke up a few times. It was cold but not crazy drafty cold thank God. The heater on it’s steady low setting did it’s thing. Every time I woke up I reminded myself I had a new understanding of sleep and that if I woke up for a few hours who cares. I could read or write lyrics like the polyphasic dudes. It was the weekend so I could nap in the afternoon if needed or nap on the train to work or from work. etc etc. I don’t think I remained awake for more than 10 mins at a time.

So, in case you haven’t guessed, the moral of this story is don’t worry about insomnia. Let your self fall into whatever rhythm you’re supposed to. Don’t fight it.

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If you like this blog please consider checking out Dr Kelly Brogan’s Vital Mind Reset course. I’m an affiliate. Thanks a million 

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Us vs. them mentality: breeding separation in self-help

Us-Vs-Them

I have to admit at times I’ve been a bit of a self-help junkie. I’ve read all the popular self help and new age books from Louise Hay’s You can Heal Your Life to Abraham Hick’s The Vortex. I’ve enjoyed exploring a variety of philosophies and opinions and I’ve at times suspended belief and humoured some fairly gnarly perspectives. I was driven by my zest for personal improvement and simply an interest in human psychology.

Since I’ve consumed a lot of self-help I now get a steady stream of sponsored ads, emails and facebook notifications from what feels like trillions of different authors, speakers, writers and other gurus. Sometimes it just feels like every man and his dog is a self- realised new age teacher and I wonder if there will be a shortage of plumbers or mechanics at some point.

Lately, I’ve been noticing a common theme whereby a blogger or vlogger will dismiss the “old” camp/ way of thinking and offer a new or novel approach. I see blog titles like “How these 7 self help tools will fuck up your life” or “why emotional processing doesn’t work” or “Fuck the Law of Attraction.”

All of these titles lead to interesting articles and perspectives but I’m getting jack of people making other people wrong! It’s a type of us vs. them which generates views by triggering people’s fears.. You might see such titles and think:

“Oh no, all this self help might be fucking me up… what the? all this emotional processing I’ve been doing with my trusted could be totally useless, … hang on..the Law of Attraction is bad??.. but everyone said it was awesome last year!!

It’s a recipe for fear, confusion and inner conflict.

Can’t we just accept that there are different schools of thought and that what works best is finding the right fit between people and approaches, rather than assuming some sort of universal application. I’ve never believed in a one-size-fits-all approach and so I’m really not interested in us vs. them mentality. Just offer what you’ve got to offer and get on with it.

Take for example the article I saw titled “why emotional processing doesn’t work” … it lead to a video about an energy healing modality which is designed to bypass linear brain thinking.. sure that might be just what a person needs but why not just offer it as it is. “The energy healing tool that’s helping thousands” why does it need to focus on slagging out some other approach.. people can try it and if it works for them great, if not on to the next thing. It doesn’t have to be a war between approaches.

Of course this war probably generates controversy and views so it works for them dollar wise. But does it work for us? the consumers? The self-help junkies wanting to think freely and explore different approaches?

I don’t want to be in the the “us” camp superior to all those “thems” on my throne of the latest new age trend.. I wan’t to be the us and the them and whatever works at a given time. I just want to follow my curiosity and see where it leads. I don’t want to fuel anything that breeds separation.

I’m done with the fear mongering. Teachers take note!

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If you like this blog please consider checking our my affiliate, Dr Kelly Brogan’s online mental health course. 

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Unexpected relief after indulging in negative emotions

Years back I worked at the top of a sky scraper as a project officer. There I became good mates with a fellow work colleague and we often took time out for lunch down in the food court on ground level. We both had interesting roles within the company but neither of us were particularly content with our lives or knew exactly where our careers were headed.

sky scraper

Our lunch breaks became a place to contemplate life, relationships, dreams and goals (or lack there of) and were a daily respite from the stress of office life. Looking back I realise how lucky I was to have work mates like this.. people who I felt a genuine comradery with as this doesn’t always happen in jobs.

I remember a time when Carly (for privacy not her real name) came to me distressed because she had overheard a conversation about her, whereby another colleague had said

“Carly is very nice but she seems like a troubled soul, she doesn’t seem very happy”

More than anything Carly  was upset that people perceived her as unhappy.. she could accept that she was discontent to a certain degree but the fact that people perceived her that way, that she was somehow coming across as a miserable idiot was unthinkable. It really shook her up.

I tried to console her, pointing out her strengths and how I felt grateful for a like-minded supportive friend. But nothing I said really made a difference. Some part of her believed what she overheard, and she was deeply concerned for her wellbeing.

A few weeks later she returned from an interstate trip home to visit her parents and I noticed she had a new lease on life. She walked into the office with an extra spring in her step and a bright and bubbly smile.

At lunch she revealed to me that one night, at her parents, she let it all out and cried.. for hours. she cried in their presence about how sad she was having  been perceived as sad and miserable. She cried about everything that was crappy in her life, every missed opportunity, every relationship struggle and she said she even cried about endangered species and refugees. For one night she indulged in every negativity and her parents listened, with loving presence, in support.

She said her parents didn’t really have anything profound to say but something about their loving presence healed the pain. She just had to cry in front of them and then somehow the pain lifted.

From that day onward I never saw Carly look unhappy in the office again.. and from that day onward I realised the healing power of indulging in negative emotions. I’m not saying I think it’s a good idea to dwell in negative emotions on and on for weeks or months on end but sometimes, things affect us and we just need a supportive shoulder to cry on.

They say a problem shared is a problem halved and I think that one of the most healing forces is a mother’s unconditional loving presence. The hippies call it “holding the space” … and sometimes that’s all you need to process negative emotions and upset, someone to love you unconditionally through your darkest hours.

Oriah Mountain Dreamer explores this in her poem, The Invitation.

“I want to know if you can sit with pain
Mine or your own
Without moving to hide it
or fade it
or fix it…..

oriah

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The science of smudging

burningsage2

Burning a sage smudge stick

I’m taking a moment to burn some sage and “smudge” my wordpress……………………Ah that’s better… my blog is now cleansed and purified! ha ha ha

Nah but seriously did you know that smudging may actually have life-saving implications by literally purifying the air of harmful bacteria?

Smudging (in case you don’t know) is the ritualistic burning of fragrant or medicinal herbs usually bound together to form a stick. It’s is a traditional practice among many indigenous cultures but more recently it’s been popularised by new age and neo-pagan enthusiasts.

Many view smudging a type of magical practice, but recent scientific studies have shown that medicinal smoke is a powerful antiseptic that can purify the air of 94% of harmful bacteria for up to 24 hours.

One study even found that a full month after burning sage “seven other pathogenic bacteria in the open room were still non-detectable”.

To be honest I don’t really think or concern myself with potential harmful bacterias floating about.. but it’s just so interesting that smudging does have this literal property.

I recently bought and dried my own sage (cheaper than buying a pre made smudge stick).. and cleansed my house with it. Yep I did it like a hippy to shift some negative “vibes” .. Something I noticed almost immediately was that I felt very relaxed and almost “stoned.” This has happened to me before and I’ve attributed it to the carbon dioxide of the smoke or the placebo effect of “cleansing” my space.

However I really did feel intensely mood-altered so I wondered if there was perhaps a mild psychoactive component in sage. A quick trawl of the interwebs led me to this site which said

“Modern science has proven that the aroma of sage increases the oxygen supply to the brain, producing a physical relaxation of muscle tension. When burned, sage and other herbs release negative ions, which research has linked to a more positive mood.”

I’d have to dig deeper to validate this claim but it wouldn’t surprise me if it’s true. A few friends have also said they felt stoned after burning sage so I don’ think it’s just my imagination.

Regardless of the hard evidence, I enjoy burning sage and my place does feel better somehow afterwards. There’s just a different vibe. Ok so there’s nothing scientific about that last sentence but I’m pretty convinced at this point there’s more to sage than magical thinking.

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Chris Cornell’s Wife Issues Statement, Blames Anxiety Medicine for Suicide

Chris-Cornell-Press

Tragic.. reposted from Rolling Stone:

“Vicky Cornell, the wife of Soundgarden singer Chris Cornell, issued a statement Friday morning where she remembered her late husband, who died Thursday morning at the age of 52, and speculated whether his suicide was the result of taking too much of his anxiety medication… read more here

If you’re struggling with mental health issues please know that there are safer and more holistic alternatives to meds. Please check out Dr Kelly Brogan, Holistic Health Psychiatrist here

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A blog a day keeps the Doctor away

In April I set out to do a blog a day for 30 days. It’s now the 30 day mark and I’ve made 25 blogs! I think I’m pretty happy with that! It’s not perfect but you know the saying ” reach for the stars hit the moon.”

moonshot

Google HQ have re-popularized the idea of “moonshots” .. stretched goals that are probably hard to achieve but stretch your further than you would otherwise be stretched.

We set ourselves goals we know we can’t reach yet, because we know that by stretching to meet them we can get further than we expected. (source

Maybe this blog, and the potential to earn passive income through affiliate links is my moonshot..

So far I’ve earned $0 in affiliate commission but I’ve directed 128 unique visitors to Dr Kelly Brogan’s site and I’ve written 25 blogs, which is far more than I would have had I set a more realistic goal.

When I was first musing over the idea of having a blog I considered setting the goal to post once a week.. that was the initial target I thought would be realistic. But then 30 blogs in 30 days popped into my head and I thought hmm that could make it a morning habit. Now it feels like a thing I do! 

And I find it therapeutic. Plus I’m intolerant to high fructose so I can’t eat an apple a day.. this blog is my apple replacement!

Where to from here I wonder?

 

What’s my next moonshot?

What other affiliates can I add to this blog?

Should I change the title to reflect a new phase?

I can’t answer any of these questions right now. I guess I’ll do some moongazing and see what I come up with.

 

Wise words from a random stranger

I practice a weird energy healing modality called “bars.” It’s a bit like Reiki and uses energy points on the head to help clear physical and psychological blockages.

Yesterday I posted in a bars facebook group that I’m running out of money and looking for work.. I asked for energy contributions, good vibes and any tips/ advice on improving my cash flow.

go random go

Random stranger cheering me on

A random stranger messaged me and offered her 20 cents worth (pretty decent advice on reflection which was probably a lot more valuable than 20 cents).

She told me about her life as a single mum raising 4 kids and how she bought her home outright with no mortgage. At first I though she was going to try and sell me some sort of Multi Level Marketing opportunity but the conversation went for a while and the more I chatted with her the more I got the impression that she just liked being a random stranger offering to help and cheering people on.

Anyone who can raise 4 kids alone and manage to generate enough money for a house on top of that is deserving of my attention I thought. So I listened to her story, her tips and let the wisdom soak in.

Why would I trust a random stranger? Because sometimes the truth rings.. It doesn’t matter who’s saying it.. there’s just a resonance that speaks to some part of you that probably already knew it was true too.

Here are the top 10 pearls of wisdom that got from our conversation .. Who knows, maybe these could it be true for you also! I hope it helps you increase your cash flow too!

10 pearls of wisdom from a random stranger (in no particular order)

1. Get plenty of FRESH.   FRESH FOOD, FRESH AIR, FRESH WATER

2. Set targets rather than goals. The old spelling of the word jail (gaol) looks a lot like goal, and sometimes goals feel like a prison sentence. When we set goals now for the future, we lock ourselves into a universe of no choice in the future. Use the word target instead. A target has much more flexibility than the word goal. A target is movable, you can change it, and you can shoot at it again and again.

3. The key to making money is PEOPLE not MONEY. You have to focus on what value you can add to people. How can I be of service is a good question to ask.

4. Be grateful. Every day be grateful for as many things as possible. Gratitude presses the happy button in the brain until eventually it’s switched on more.

5.What do you know that makes you feel alive. Build on what works for you. Money follows joy.

6. Think of job hunting as a game. Think of life as a game. It’s all a game try to have fun with it. Play with it.

7. You have to be willing to do what it takes to reach your targets. If that means working three jobs, getting housemates, couch surfing, painting walls, babysitting, etc you’d got to be willing. What are you unwilling to do that if you were willing to do would allow you to reach your target?

8. What works well is multiple streams of income: an action job, passive income, and cash income. You need an action job first before a passive income stream will work for you.. there won’t be enough energy behind it otherwise. (by action job I think she means a steady employment or self employment were you actively work.. for some reason this resonates although I’m not 100% sure why this is true for me.. that what I feel I need to do though)

9. Smile at strangers

10. Your heart and your body tells the truth more than your brain. Get in the vortex and follow your awareness. The truth is ultimately within.

Thanks for the pep talk random stranger. I’m feeling pumped now! 

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Maslow’s hierarchy of demigod “needs”

What do we actually NEED in life and what’s just a preference? I remember as far back as primary school considering the difference between needs and wants when a teacher explained it like this: “Needs,” she said, were requirements for basic survival, such as food and shelter, whereas “wants” were just desires or wishes for things that whilst nice, we could live without.

I remember this leaving a question mark in my mind as I contemplated the grey area between needs and wants.. what if we were outcasts with no friends and family.. Would we survive that even if we had food? Could human beings survive extreme isolation I wondered? My teacher said I had a very philosophical mind and that I asked interesting questions.

maslow-pyramid

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs

I don’t think I even knew what “philosophical” meant back then but I always remember her saying that word to me.

Later at university I came across Maslow’s Hierachy of needs, a motivational theory in psychology comprising a five tier model of human needs, often depicted as hierarchical levels within a pyramid. Maslow theorised that people are motivated to achieve certain needs and that some needs take precedence over others.

This kind of hierarchical idea of needs made sense on first reading; you’d be hard pressed to fulfil a creative dream, for example, if you were starving and homeless.

However, there was always something about Maslow’s pyramid that didn’t sit right for me. It took me years to work out why. Initially I didn’t like the word “need” applied to the mid and high tier aspects like esteem and fulfilment. Especially since my primary school teacher’s definition was still lurking somewhere in my memory.

Later after delving deeper into the concept of human needs I realised I didn’t like the word “need” at all. Why?

Because calling something a “need” gives it a demigod status.

thor-norse-god

Needus God of Needs

You make it more powerful than you!

Say for example I say I “need” self esteem in order to reach the next level of Maslow’s pyramid –  self actualisation.  Whilst this linear step by step view makes sense it’s not in reality the way life unfolds. Read any biography of a great artist, writer or musician and you’ll often find an equally great lack of self esteem. I even watched a video recently of Lady Gaga where she talks about hating herself and how she always lacked self esteem.

How do people who hate themselves end up world famous?

I think what happens is that we are driven by an intrinsic motivation to create. That creation is our natural and deepest expression and that it’s not dependant on anything external.

I’ve looked at this both ways and I’ve lived my life from both perspectives. I’ve tried accepting that I have certain “needs” and doing what’s required to get my needs met. I’ve also tried fucking off the idea of needs and just creating the life I want to live from where I’m at the best I can and not worrying about needs at all. I found the latter far more fulfilling and helpful.

Thinking about “needs” causes me to feel a sense of lack. I feel “needy”  and concerned about all these potential needs that aren’t being met. I don’t have a loving partner or oodles of friends.. I have some self-esteem but maybe it’s not enough. Thinking about needs just launches a kind of negative lack-based evaluation matrix.

What works better for me is to totally allow myself to be where I am currently at. To draw no conclusions about weather one need takes priority over another. To be an invitation for all of life to come to me with ease, joy and glory! To dance between the different levels in no particular linear order. Sure I admit I do need food and shelter.. but even much of that is superfluous.. like that chocolate bar I had last night. My waistline didn’t need that.

So what’s the moral of this longwinded rant post? Well .. if need is a demigod then creation might be the real deal.

What would you like to create today?

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