a good conversationalist

Standards rise in a realistic way for once. Perhaps I’m a ticking time bomb waiting to detonate once I discover the fragility of romantic thought. Whatever the case, most people disinterest me. They don’t know how to talk, often bogged down in themselves. To have an inner source of power and truth, but act only outwardly is so attractive. No one can run this drill 100% of the time, but imagine crossing someone with it at least as their default. Asking questions out of real curiosity and not fear of appearing disinterested. Then hitting the jackpot realizing you actually have values and interests in common. Follow it all up with an appreciation for the moment and not trying to dig your claws in to preserve it forever. Shooing away inevitable feelings of loss. To understand that life is a path people will sometimes walk with you and not always at the same time. Feeling your hope die is unpleasant, but to be grateful for having any hope at all is next level. The rare great conversationalist – calm, collected, beautiful with confidence, considerate, and in the rare intimate occasion: compatible. They’re ones hard to let go. But life will stay just as sweet when you encounter such rareness again.

working on yourself

Working on yourself is hard and feels unnecessary when a bit of temporary reprieve or comfort comes your way. 

It’s hard to stay disciplined and focused, especially when things seem to suddenly turn back in your favor.

You can ride the high, but truth be told, you’ll find yourself crashing harder than before when you start to come down from the trip.

Suddenly you’re back at square one, as though you haven’t learned anything. Then you spiral further into believing you’re hopeless to finding the change in yourself you wanted to find. 

Trusting the process is a lonely and frightening experience. There’s no sugarcoating it. You will unknowingly use every worst fear you have against you. Protecting yourself and restoring what you’ve established as normal will always be the main priority for these fears, unless of course you break them.

Breaking fear is a matter of accepting it. Ride out the fear. Not running from it. Let the sickness run its course.

There are no epiphanies or trumpets that blare when you finally do break them and start to feel that your best self is the majority of yourself. But quiet moments do occur when you realize how happy you are for no explainable reason. This is your new normal. Never take it for granted. 

That’s when you know you’ve caught on to this whole idea of working on yourself. There aren’t any mind games and you no longer need validation from others.

There’s just you and it’s enough.

14 Things to Brand on Ourselves

  1. do what you want to do
  2. do it for you
  3. let people “use” you
  4. fuck the why, enjoy the be
  5. embrace the ideology of manifestation
  6. kill all assumptions and expectations of others
  7. strip the egotistical b.s., be proud of what’s left
  8. don’t be afraid of what’s important, but forget “self importance”
  9. don’t violate your own harmony for collective balance
  10. when unsure, ask
  11. do not remain “silent”
  12. do not compromise yourself beneath good or neutral
  13. when it doubt, let go
  14. embrace who you are – big or little, physical or spiritual

finding peace in noise and chaos

I’m going to listen to some dark shit.

Some sick satanic beats.

LOUDLY.

Furthermore, I’m going to use it to concentrate on important matters.

We are always looking for silence to speak to us because it lacks sound.

But allowing our auditory senses a chance to be overwhelmed blocks out everything.

Silence is waiting to be disturbed.

Why is it only effective to create with a free and quiet mind?

Sometimes amplifying the gravity on ourselves can pressure our imaginations to places we never knew existed.

To feel the peace and tranquility in the beauty of the pain and suffering.

It’s like breathing.

Breathe in the quiet, let out the chaos.

Just don’t hold on to either too tightly.

communicate

This is delicate territory for someone like myself. Communicating what you want or need but trying to remain open and receptive to others’ desires and perspectives is an area I’m still not the most comfortable. Bending to others’ viewpoint has been my standard default because I’d rather not argue and fight. Where some crave it, I find it taxing and exhausting. However, I’ve learned the dangers about compromising my own needs and wants to keep some sort of collective harmony. Even worse, I assume both sides are working towards satisfying each other to find some middle ground. What I forget is that there is no middle ground if it hinders what you need or want. Not to say finding some middle ground isn’t beneficial, but it needs to be on terms that works for you. You have to do what you want for you in the end, and fearless communication is the only way to see that you’re getting there. It’s no longer worth getting frustrated waiting for someone to “meet me halfway”. This is a long winded way of saying to stick to your values I suppose. I need to learn that communicating yourself is everything, whether it leads to an agreement or argument. I’ve been so quick and dismissive of others when they are willing to fight against me. Maybe I’ve trained myself to believe that one single attack by them is equivalent to permanently dismissing me. I’m so easy to open myself to the many different outlooks of others that it often surprises me when people quickly and sharply disagree with me. What I forget is that they have a right to stand up for what they see as truth, as do I. I’ll keep an appreciation for my ability to listen, but this so called balanced scale must always tip in favor of my direction first and foremost. Communication can’t be effective if both sides just blindly accept what the other offers.

let people “use” you

It sounds self-deprecating. It sounds like preparing yourself to become the world’s greatest doormat. What it really is is letting go of your own ideas about how you are received. To know ourselves is not a matter of being able to recite amazing qualities or flaws about ourselves. Knowing yourself is living in peace by being ourselves. Knowing this peace is the only thing we need to remember. People will take what they want or need out of us. Lovers and friends alike seek this, as we do from them. All we need to remain aware of in this sense is whether their “use” of us is disturbing our peace. If we keep this on the front line of thinking, then we’re less susceptible to judging others. I may know or never know what people get out of me. But to demand to know or try to control what I want others to get from me is an egotistical fear tactic. It all comes down to accepting that the world is out of your control sans the boundaries of your own being.

no more self

no more self

Waking up in the morning and clearing the slate  has been the most real experience I’ve had in awhile. Meditating on nothing more than a white blank canvas while I let any other thoughts fade to ash has been hypnotic. I hate moving and starting the day. The loops of thoughts are waiting there, ready to drag me back down into my anxiety, my self-doubt, and my inadequacies. I’ve grown tired and weak allowing myself to feel unworthy, inexperienced, and naive. I wrap myself in shame and guilt for things I’ve done and things I’ve failed to do. 

I’m tired of this version of myself. This “self” needs to die. I want to capture the imagination that I paint on this white canvas and run with it. I’m tired of allowing myself to believe that I’m not good enough. That the people I encounter on a daily basis also believe I’m not worthy. 

The easiest deceptions in the world to see are the most trigger sensitive. I removed myself from social media because a constant reminder remained that everyone else is extremely content where they are – they know what makes them happy and they know how to move on. I can barely watch TV – another medium projecting a life you don’t have. 

Even now, I ponder my guilt. So am I content to be alone in my apartment, quietly writing music and harmonies for the next several months? What about the life I’m missing? The bumps and bruises I’m supposed to get along the way? For some reason I develop the belief that I’m missing out on all the sex, drugs, and rock n’ roll that everyone waltzes right into. I’m nothing without it because everyone else is in it. Outside looking in again. The noise is otherworldly. It’s hard not to get ushered into what other people perceive as important. 

People tend to be loud, boisterous, critical, and supposedly experienced. All this peacocking makes me feel like an innocent church boy again. Go home kid, the grown ups are doing blow and lamenting their existence. You just don’t get it because you’re not brave enough to get it. 

When meditating, these thoughts dissipate. I feel good because this version of me is not present. The second I step out into the world, the innocent dreamer kid with not an inch of callous skin returns. I constantly ask ‘what if’ and dread over decisions I made months or even years ago. I want these thoughts to die. I want to be me with my white canvas. I don’t want to give a shit about other people’s opinions. I want to allow myself the ability to forgive myself, find my own happiness, and look forward. That’s the only experiences I want to aspire to. 

by ty miller

middle ground

middle ground

Of the many people I’ve met in my life, two types of people tend to hug the fringes of life’s spectrum.

  1. The person who sees life as responsibility. You get up everyday, go to work, save up for retirement, start a family, provide for them, come home, and then find happiness in small pockets. You die thinking “I did my best to take care of business while maintaining integrity and abiding by my ethical or moral code”. 
  2. The existential who seeks happiness with a sense of carelessness. Someone who completely buys into the core principles of postmodernist thinking. Life will only cause you pain, knock you down, then curb stomp you for the hell of it. So why bother getting up? Live pleasurably and bask in the cynicism and irony that is our existence.

This isn’t necessarily a critique of how these types of people see life. It does seem though that the middle ground they want to stay clear of is tied to a sense of safety in certain identity. 

Number 1 is your classic idea of a conformist. Society has been built a certain way, and we are obliged to fit into the puzzle to keep the machine functioning smoothly. We are a product of a past success. Keep the status quo. 

Number 2 thinks they are the rebels, because in the traditional sense they are. Where society began to form an identity and began to conform to it, this group decided to reject the idea that the past defined them. Furthermore, they saw the pointlessness of putting in everything to conform when more than likely losers would come out the other end. 

This isn’t a sociological history lesson. This is a lesson about fear of accepting anything other than what their trauma has put in place for them. Their flexibility has been hardened. Do you happen to find yourself starting to lean into one of these groups? I definitely have at times. 

I dare you to challenge the belief in the following statements in the minds of these groups:

Number 1 : Life is work.

Number 2 : Life is pain. 

Here’s a simple practice of language that could help someone be brave enough to wander into the middle ground and out of the shadows of the polar fringes:

Life is work, but…

Life is pain, but…

When you allow an exception to the rule, especially when it comes to life, all it takes is a simple acknowledgement that it can exist. We’re all scared of something, but life is best spent in the middle ground in sunshine, even if you do get sunburnt from time to time. 

by ty miller

 

creating

creating

Rule of thumb. Music with Jon Wurster involved is good music. 

What creative connections are currently available for you? Are you finding any fulfillment you need from creating? The most challenging part of creating is finding satisfaction balancing purpose and resonance

Purpose is the easy part. Some things you were born to do. If the world was suddenly void of all living things, you’d still feel inclined to meet some form of the purpose you were born with. 

Resonance. Finding success isn’t worthwhile. Turning purpose into an American career has its perks but as the primary purpose of purpose, well not really. Being good at something is nice too, but that’s a wary position to take. Even if you were born to do something, things will always begin on the rough end and by some standards not good. True purpose will ignore this deterrent, so don’t sweat it. 

Purpose is relentless. If you’re keeping any clarity within, purpose is a relatively unconscious effort. We don’t have to worry about executing it, but with resonance we have no foresight. Sometimes the resonance will bring us critical acclaim or fame, a short-lived sugar spike of affirmation. Other times we’ll receive no reaction at all.  

 I try to break it down into simpler terms. 

We breathe in purpose. We breathe out resonance. One is the effect of the other. Tricky to resonate when ears aren’t always available though. It begs the question ‘What is purpose without effect?’ Purpose isn’t tethered to one idea though. You have to keep putting it out there, believing and hoping that eventually, over some amount of time, some of the resonance will find a landing spot. Creative connection completed, purpose no longer shooting blanks. 

Don’t deny your purpose the air it deserves. Keep giving the resonance a chance to find a home. Maybe not to a degree you could be considered successful by societal standards, but with any relating party that can take something positive away from your purpose. That’s true resonance. 

If you are able to let go and believe your purpose is inevitable, then as a result, you can believe that a travelling resonance will inevitably find something to reach.

by ty miller