Sunday, November 24, 2013

How to Find Your Passion, Part 2

Disclaimer: If you're reading this with a lot of grammatical mistakes and a sort of speech/ stream of consciousness vibe/ flagrant abuse of ellipses... then that means Lyn didn't edit this too much, we have very different writing styles. If you're reading this and it's grammatically correct... then that means that she edited it... and deleted this whole disclaimer.

Oh, and I haven't read her answers to the questions brought up by this article yet so this should be interesting.

Step 1: Answer the Question: What do you love?

I love creating things...painting obviously...otherwise I think the name of this blog would be different... but also woodworking, drawing, cooking...and wildly obscure metaphors to explain concepts (ask me about my football based Congestive Heart Failure explanation sometime). There's a lot of pride in a finished piece that you're happy with.

I also love teaching people things/ being the guy with the answers. Seeing someone "get it," whether it's a difficult new concept, or an activity that they've never tried, is a pretty awesome feeling. Explaining a medical condition and the treatment to a patient so they truly understood and felt more confident about letting me working on them, talking politics or sociology with someone in a way that they understand it's relation to current events, science (what little I know)...that sort of stuff. Teaching probably wouldn't be a bad choice for me if it wasn't for being surrounded by loud, obnoxious, Know-it-all kids. (I remember myself in high school)

I love the adrenalin rush of a win in a stressful situation. Like an live-fire ambush or room clearing exercise drill in the Marine Corps or an acute medical call on the ambulance where you're always one step ahead and watching the patient improve with the treatment choices you made.

Step 2: Answer the Question: What do you loathe?

I loathe busy work... might explain my decision not to re-enlist. If there is not logical, productive reason to be doing something other than "because I said so," don't make me do it. I can totally accept "I don't have time to explain it to you right now, so get it done and I'll explain it all to you later," or even better, "there's absolutely no good reason to be doing this but I want you to look busy in case my bosses walk in." (Emmett, if you read this someday "because I said so" is a totally acceptable reason for me to give to you!)

I loathe people being mean or disrespectful just because of a misplaced sense of authority...public service, municipal, local, and federal is all service to the people, not the other way around. Your badge, stars, bars, stripes, degrees, title, or office don't give you the right to belittle, ignore, or disregard somebody's wishes. You don't have to honor them but you do have to recognize and consider them.

I loathe working retail.  From corporate to customers to pay, with the occasional exception of coworkers there is almost no redeeming quality to working retail. I'm thinking no one is getting barista for any corporate outfits as their dream job.

I loathe inconsiderate people who are oblivious of their surroundings. People who stop in the middle of aisles, people who let their kids run amok, people who feel that they are the most important person in the world and everyone else need to submit to their will. (see: the majority of customers I encountered working retail).

Step 3: Discover the Seven Seeds of Your Soul

1. Even if you didn’t get paid a cent for it, would you still do this? I'd do (and right now I am doing) art without getting paid. I probably wouldn't volunteer teach and I definitely wouldn't go back to being a Marine or a Paramedic without getting paid (it was barely worth the little pay I got.)

2. Would doing this inspire you every day? I like getting the new ideas for artwork and figuring out the riddle of getting it done... so yeah, that's inspiring. Teaching would be pretty great with the right batch of kids or maybe the right school... but the way that the education system is going there are really no guarantees. The Military and Emergency Medicine pretty much sent me the other way... unless misanthropy can be inspired?

3. Does doing this come as naturally to you as breathing? I guess organizing ideas into images and structures is pretty natural to me... I had an idea for a new series of paintings tonight and immediately after the idea hit me I had picture layouts and compositions figured out. The words "I wonder what that would look like" seldom come out of my mouth because I've already imagined what it would look like. (I'm usually disappointed about the actors they chose for characters in books I've read).

4. Do you feel you’ve been given a special gift to do this? Like Olsher said... this is sometimes a hard thing to admit. When I was a Paramedic and sometimes as a Marine, people would say, "I could never do that"...sometimes they meant the academic side of learning medicine but mostly they meant the occasional blood, frequent exposure to bodily fluids, common invasive procedures, and constant jackasses. I would always tell them they could do it, because I've seen people do some amazing things under stress. It's desire that they didn't have. But I've known people who really wanted to do some of the things I have done with art and weren't able to. At every other job on the list there have been people were doing it better than I was...sometimes because of natural ability and sometimes because of yeah, while I know I'm no great artist, I do think that I've got a skill that some don't have.

5. Does time seem to fly by when you’re engaged in this activity? Art: yes. Marine: seldom. Paramedic: sometimes. Retail: only in comparison to scooping out my own eyeballs with a rusty spoon.

6. Can you possibly make money doing this? Art: Hopefully. Marine: yes but at physical cost. Paramedic: yes but at mental cost. Retail: yes but the cost would be ten years with a possible chance of parole in five.

There are plenty of things that I love and hate that I could expound upon in these lists... but in the interest of brevity... and the fact that Lyn keeps asking, "how's it going in there?"... I'll end it here. I'm happy with my primary job of taking care of Emmett (which covers the love and some of the hate questions) but I'm also very glad to be doing art regularly again and be in this project with my amazing wife.

PS - ...Was that good babe?

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