This morning I read a wonderful post from Anne Bogart on the SITI company's blog. Now, it's not a secret that I think Aunt Anne is a pretty darn smart cookie (as evidenced by this blog being titled after an idea I learned from her) - but something about what she wrote in that piece has struck a chord with me today. You should read the whole thing (it's not really that terribly long), but the thesis I'm pulling from it is that we have the power to choose. We get to choose everything - primarily how we interact with the world around us. (there's also a killer episode of Radiolab that deals with what & how we choose. I love those boys.)
Anne talks specifically about life in these "tough economic times," but I think this idea of choosing your outlook carries far beyond crisis. I guess I'm just really invigorated today by the idea of this power to choose. Especially in a time when my professional life is uncertain - as is paying the rent and keeping food in the fridge, let alone the kind of art I want to make (see also Hierarchy of Needs) - the feeling of powerlessness can loom large. Some big decisions seem out of my control, there's a lot that feels in flux, in progress, with an outcome that I can't see clearly just yet. But I've been approaching a lot of things with fear rather than faith (not capital F Faith - although I won't say that isn't part of the mix, too). No matter what happens next, worry isn't going to alter the outcome, and it isn't making the present very much fun.
A very wise woman I know has counseled me to "look up." Regardless of the outcome of the myriad variables in my life right now, I can either barrel along with my eyes on the pavement, waiting to stumble and skin my knee - or I can look up, feel the wind on my face, and enjoy the ride. Given those two options, I think the choice is pretty clear.