Mental Construction Site
Have you ever sat down not knowing what to write about?
We all have tons of topics in our heads. Things we like to talk about, situations we experienced and wanna share. But once we look at the screen the mind goes blank. All the little stories fade away in tangled thoughts. What seems like a good story suddenly turns into nothing you wanna share anymore.
I have been absent a lot this month, compared to the 6 months before. I was and am busy helping renovating a house. Lately I'm mostly busy with getting the stuff from the walls. I have to chisel it down, room by room.
Even though the work is physically challenging, for hours you keep your arms up, it is also meditative to me. No radio, no talking. I recognized that while I was scraping and chiseling my thoughts could calm down.
The monotonous moving off the chisel, hammer and spatula got me into a zone of thinking while not thinking. Thinking without thinking? What I experienced was perhaps a form of meditation. I've never meditated consciously so I'm just guessing now.
This thinking without thinking is crazy. It is like watching a reality show but you are the actor. You see yourself and not everything you see is nice. Not every thought that comes up while not consciously thinking about stuff is a good one.
With every layer of wallpaper, concrete and latex coming down more of myself showed up.
The work in the house shows me things that I have to work on. Finding balance in give and take for example. I'm a giver. But I realized that unconditional giving changes at a certain point. It is never as altruistic as it may seem, acting selflessly and unselfishly.
I realize that this is a normal human behavior. To expect something at a certain point. I cannot deny that after day 4 I was thinking of getting something out of my will to help. Not sure what but I had to be honest to myself and see that me helping is not always selfless. To accept that without beating myself up over it was one thing I learned lately.
I also learned to just let go of good advice when no one bothers about it. What happens usually when one is having an advice and no one listens? Right, we all get upset to a point. Especially when we know that we are right.
Scratching, scraping, chiseling dry walls...labor like in a Gulag. But I took it on because the owner of the house dismissed an advice I had and even though I'm the one doing the work, I'm not mad at her. After 2 rooms and 9 days she listened to me. Now we wet the walls to get all the stuff down more easily.
What it showed me was that I don't have to take it personal when an advice of mine is dismissed. Maybe it is the circumstances that made me deal with it in a NOT angry way. Even though it meant hard work for me and more days for the renovation. But it is not my house and project so if an advice gets dismissed it just is what it is then.
I think I gave up a little bit of a controlling impulse. To control the circumstances, how what is done and when. Even if I know that my advice is good, I also had to learn to accept that someone has a different opinion. This other opinion is a huge detour in this case, but leads to the same result in the end.
This house shows me that I haven't mastered fears and old behaviors, but it also allows me to work on it even more. It brings out my strengths, but also my weaknesses. Transforming these weaknesses or rather the other side is harder than I thought. Just because we think we know things about ourselves does not mean that our actions correspond to them.
Transforming ourselves is a hard thing to do and takes the most will. It is like transforming this old house. The fundament will be the same. But there are layers that will be removed, restructured and remodeled. Old paint is coming off and a new one will be applied.
But it takes time and work to do so and sometimes we have to take a detour.