Here. Now. Today.

Here. Now. Today.

It’s my new mantra.

Too often, we are not in the present.  We’re mining the middens of the past trying to explain away our bad feelings or bad behavior or we’re floating into painful projections of a future more akin to a post-apocalyptic world.

Lately, I’ve been dealing with my anxiety.  Part of my job as a movie producer is to prevent potential problems with production and minimize liabilities as much as possible.  My job is to look at a script and ask myself, “What could go wrong here,” and “Where is there a waste of money or other resources?”

abstract analog art camera
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Therefore, as part of being in a leadership position, I do have to put some mind-space in the future and the what-ifs.  People count on me to anticipate and solve problems.  And if I solve a problem that never grows into a full-blown “issue”, all the better!  However, once it makes my heart race or prevents me from moving forward, I’ve started to go to:

 

Here.  Now.  Today.

Here–where I am–the space–my office, the coffee shop, etc.

Now–what am I doing in the now–data entry, memorizing, budgeting

Today–the actual date and time

Here. Now. Today.

I also have to accept there’s enough entropy that I won’t be able to anticipate all the issues.  I recently toured a movie ranch that lost 20 structures in the last California wildfire.  There’s no way anyone could have predicted that specific facility would have lost all those structures–iconic ones.  There are limits to what we can foresee and anticipate, even if we have keen minds and heightened intuition.

If you’re feeling anxious, or are tasked with trying to lead a group, especially projecting the future, know that you can’t project or prognosticate everything.  You can only do the best you can do.

Here, now, today is our greatest point of power.

 

 

 

The Inner Ghost Town

018B723F-0201-4856-8D5B-BA7DB059E182 (1)Today, I took a trek to Mentryville, a ghost town in the Santa Clarita area. I was doing a preliminary scout for a project awaiting funding.  As I walked around the abandoned buildings, it was apparent to me that inside of us, we often carry around an inner ghost town.  What outdated structures (beliefs, habits) have we not cleared?  What projects have we abandoned? What dreams did we have to leave behind when our hope dried up?

So often a ghost town develops when a resource is depleted or an industry moves away.  Mentryville is dubbed “California’s First Oil Boom Town”.  Today, I was challenged to look at the ways I’ve been depleted.  I was also challenged to assess how much I’ve been holding on to “yesterday” instead of looking ahead, how the winds have shifted in my life and how my inner and outer landscape has changed.  1D638D20-B6EF-4B90-A445-E7579A071C51

Of course, the idea of a ghost town, implies a lack of life.  A ghost town is populated by ghosts, the dead who have unfinished business.   The ghost towns of our psyches are where we have unfinished business–the unsaid, the stuff we wish we had or hadn’t done.  The inner ghost town is the unanswered questions of our pain that we replay and revisit looking for answers that may never satisfy.  Instead of going over and over again what could and should have been, it’s more profitable to clear the structures that are falling down.  Too often, stasis feels safe, when it’s really what’s diminishing our possibilities.  Everything and everyone has their time and place in our lives.  Sometimes a controlled demolition of our inner ghost town is necessary.