Most of my earlier working life had been a struggle. I swung between complicated and simple perspectives, hardly ever straddling the middle. I was afraid to let go of my limited view because I thought that if I just simplified my work I would be happy. A simple life is good, but there will always be sadness, happiness, fear, and passion in every job.
“Life's like a movie, write your own ending. Keep believing, keep pretending.”
- Jim Henson quotes
The tool of imagination is one that we usually reserve for kids, but as adults we need to cultivate this skill because it’s so versatile. It helps us see life from a perspective that can make our lives enjoyable, peaceful, and interesting.
We like to keep our lives simple and pleasant. The problem with simple and pleasant is that our brains seek passion and excitement. That’s why people love to complete big projects. The stimulation brings the feeling of accomplishment.
When I’m at work and I’m having a rough day I imagine what I look like in the sweetest old lady's eyes. I see this glow of love around me and this glow starts to penetrate into my heart, filling me with joy. This perspective usually picks me up and helps me see past my negative self view.
When I was fired from a job in my mid twenties I felt like crying in the managers office (I know I'm a big baby). I hugged him good bye (he was a good man, it was the owner that didn’t like me) and promptly went into a depression. I was lost for almost two months. I went on unemployment and rode around on my bicycle. It wasn’t until I hit my lowest point that my creativity finally kicked in. Love showed up in everything and everyone. The grocery store check out lady would smile at me. My parents helped me pay my rent. I felt like I was surrounded by love. I decided to write a book about how I found my joy. I turned my life into a story. That book spurred this blog and the rest of my life.
Your imagination is a tool that can help open doors to new parts of your life. Doors that will help you tap into the work passion that you need or just turn a bad day into an exciting learning experience. The best way to do this is to start off slowly because if you start too fast you might give up. I want you to slowly tap the mind for imaginative solutions to old problems. What do you struggle with on a daily basis? Who bothers you in your life? Try using your imagination to see a new angle. If that co-worker keeps hassling you, try to imagine that he had a rough childhood. Do you do monotonous work every day? Try imagining that you are a movie star playing the role of a lifetime. You’ll be amazed at how your imagination can improve almost any situation. You’ll bring a hop back in your step.
If a bad situation keeps popping up then your creativity will only take you so far. You are going to have to change the situation by find a new job or talking to human resources. But sometimes we just need to get lost in our imaginations to make the day a little more enjoyable. In my eyes, there is nothing wrong with that.
4 thoughts on “Use Your Imagination”
Children are naturally happy because they have a rich and vivid imagination that takes them in a place where they can be happy. It's unfortunate that we lose this ability to imagine like a child when we reach adulthood.
Chris's last blog post..The Guy In The Middle
Hey Chris, we might lose this ability to bring imagination and wonder into our life, but I think it's like riding a bike. We can learn to bring this back with a little practice.
If you watch a youth with exuberance, vivid dreams and agility, you can see imagination in action. Children are capable of imagination that we, adult, can only dream of. They achieve so much but they shatter many failures. With our growth and fear of failure, we lose imagination and risk taking to achieve anything meaningful in life.
I recently read a quote from a buddhist monk that said something to the effect...when we stop holding onto what we think life really is and let go, we come back to the child inside. Something to try next time you are stuck on a problem at work.
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