How the unconscious helps us manage the unexpected

Photo by Elizabeth Diane

How the unconscious helps us manage unexpected events, both major and minor.

It pays to be aware of this natural progression:

  • Intuition takes over when the unexpected happens. Our spontaneous response is based on years of survival and it kicks in, automatically.
  • Survival means automatically taking hold of gut reactions, trimming your thoughts, words and behavior until they rise to the priority system that serves you well.
  • In three seconds, you have taken a position toward the unexpected. Now it lies within your scope of control, within your system of self-management.

Now the unconscious strategy begins:

  • On the far side of the situation, your mind’s eye sees where you need to be to recover from the impact – whether it was subtle or dramatic. You head for that place of self-worth with inner determination. You navigate through and around obstacles in the situation until you reach your dominant position. It’s a matter of retaining self-respect and individuality.
  • Now life returns to “normal” where you have mental clarity again. The emotional upheaval goes away and the unexpected is put in line where you can manage yourself with confidence, even if it seems you have no external control.
  • Empowerment: Riding the wave and successfully recovering from the unexpected is a sign of great strength and resilience. This is a new level of personal accomplishment, even if you’re the only one who knows it. There is a limit, however, but it is the limitation of being human.

What’s next? Not just the perpetual struggle that life is; now you begin to see the higher purpose through the eyes of your heart.

  • Immediately following a rise to a new height of personal strength, that very strength seems ineffective. During that time, life shows up as your friend. It’s not all about what you work at; life hands you what you need to fulfill your purpose. Life happens in connection with others and uses your work to serve others.
  • Pressure builds. We can’t stay in our private “sweet spot” of personal productivity, and yet we don’t yet know what’s coming up. We feel in-between, like nothing is happening, but we’re growing and strengthening in a different way.
  • Finally, something breaks and the whole course of events shows up in something that is external and apparent to others. It is the physical manifestation of all the work that went on beneath your skin.

Closure

  • The unexpected that occurred in the beginning brought about a pretty big change! Once it is finished in the physical manifestation, others perceive you in a slightly different way, unconsciously. You, however, know and feel the change, inside and out. You see what they see, also for the first time, and unconsciously realize what this change means to your life.
  • Realization is cemented in the fact that life, as it was before the unexpected, is melting away into memory. Something is coming together in its place, and you have the chance to feel the growth, the transformation.
  • Finally, the new stage of your life is in place and you cannot change what it has become. Even if you try to live as you did before the unexpected happened; even if, outwardly, things seem to be as they were before, you are different as a result of this unconscious process.

In this repetitive, natural cycle of time and life, your deepest heart and unconscious mind is renewed. We move constantly forward, and that process moves life constantly, incrementally, in a positive direction.

 

Follow Elizabeth’s progress toward publishing a new book in 2018: A Writer’s Journal.

Why it’s more fun to work for free: Seeds of business

No one wants to work without getting paid. But when you can do a good thing for someone, and you feel naturally competent and happy to do it, the satisfaction on both sides is a reward far more valuable than money.

Why it’s more fun to work for free:

  1. The work shows up spontaneously, inside of real connections.
  2. Unconsciously, the enjoyment is more important than the work.
  3. We interact freely, matching available solutions to current needs.
  4. We actually co-work, each contributing something toward the solution.
  5. We continue working as long as it works on both ends.
  6. When  we have done everything we can do, the job is done, even if we didn’t reach some otherwise goal.
  7. Working together spontaneously and effectively means we were happy to work.
  8. Each person feels personal satisfaction in having contributed to the progress.
  9. We have the freedom to leave when we have no more to contribute.
  10. We are naturally open to being used effectively again.
  11. The oppression of “work” evaporates.
  12. Energy is renewed, skills are sharpened, personal ownership is a fact, and we could charge for our work, if we want to.

 

 

 

Born to be life pioneers

We love a good success story, especially in a two-hour movie where we can comfortably experience the thrills of inspiration, the surprises and stresses of a journey, and most of all, the satisfaction of a successful conclusion.

Life isn’t like that, is it? Actually, it is like that – in excruciating slow motion, dragged over 60 or 70 years. There’s nothing to be gained by thinking we’re just marking time.

Time-lapsed true-life stories about sacrifices that pay off actually bring meaning to our lives.

In retrospect, being happy in work has been the best quality of my life. People seemed to recognize how they could use me long before I did. Without trying, I would improve the job I was assigned, and that made me an attractive prospect for promotions. It just happened

But the events of the recent past opened my eyes to the idea of doing what I am born to do, rather than what I’m trained to do. What I became skilled at can now be used for my purposes – and maybe that was the intention all along.

 

The pioneering winemakers of Willamette, Oregon committed to the call of the wild without knowing what the outcome would be:

“There was a much higher calling than trying to imitate some other place. That goal was to figure out who we wanted to be for ourselves, and what it was that we could do that nobody else could do.”
– Oregon Wine: Grapes of Place 

 

It’s the process of growth that takes so long, but at certain points

along the way, looking back can give you your own time-lapsed rapid view. Review your life now, without comparing it to what you wanted to accomplish, and make a note of the important turning points. See what life handed you, and plot its sequence and direction. How would your outlook change if you accepted these facts as the consistent good in your life?

I did this and started accepting life’s twists and turns, rather than exhausting myself trying to straighten them out. I have since watched my life reassemble itself around what I was born to do. It’s still hair-raising at times, life being what it is. The difference is that now I understand that life always supports what I was born to be and to do. In the process, my body, mind and spirit are renewed, not depleted.

Life sends out the call. I recommend that you consider discovering what your life tells you about what you are born to do. And follow it, if you can.

Look Homeward, Worker

http://www.sheknows.com/living/articles/1122293/home-office-ti

The stuff of dreams

The movie, Field of Dreams (1989, Kevin Costner), is an entrepreneur’s story. “If you build it they will come” is still a catch phrase that speaks to an entrepreneur’s resolve. In the movie, a visionary person risks acting on a very personal belief. It won’t leave him alone. So he endures hardship, financial failure, ridicule and the fruitless passing of time before his dream comes true.

It is ingrained in corporate-trained entrepreneurs that profit is the only reason to undertake an enterprise. Some believe investors buy great ideas, unproven. But people with money don’t invest in original ideas unless they see a way to get a return on their investment (ROI), and the quicker the better. Investors pick up an idea after the owner has invested her or his own time and money to prove its functional value, and that people will pay for that value.

The artist part is the hardest part

Making money is a smaller consideration when you’re creating. Artists intuitively know this. They create as a way of life, heart to hand. Only when admirers increase around them do they think of selling their dearest work. When an artist is ready to take her work to the public, she begins to think like an entrepreneur.

Unlike artists who are always personally invested in their creations, when an entrepreneur brings a product to the public, it becomes a thing to be used. Costs of resources and labor are considered in looking toward profit. But if an entrepreneur also believes in the good his product brings to the world, he is more like the artist.

The silver lining of economic depression and unemployment is that we rediscovered primal ways of working. Work and life run together when you spend time at home. In the trimming of the workforce, many of us found ourselves working from home, doing whatever we could to survive.

The migration to the home office

When corporate workers started working from home, it was a natural follow for us to create businesses at home. The familiar environment of an office helps us continue to work as we did in an office job. Displaced workers are going further, creating smaller versions of their corporate parents, either in the home or in rented office space. But working on our own is not like showing up for an employer.

Few individuals or families can support the additional expenses of a formal office indefinitely. We invested in the startup to conform to the familiar image of business, but customers didn’t walk into our place of business like we expected. We slowly realized that the corporate system is built on top of stuff we don’t have: lots of money, lots of workers and a lot of years.  Loss is part of the business system, over the long term, but in the beginning, our hopes are only for success.

Necessity and invention

What we do have that the corporations don’t have is ingenuity and flexibility. In an era where the same tools for innovation are available to the individual, discovery and creativity abound. The fires of innovation burn, as always, in a climate of necessity. We started keeping our ideas instead of turning them over to the corporate environment.

Even though we still thought jobs were the answer, unemployment persisted and options steadily diminished. Our knowledge and work skills became tools for us, not services for someone else. We labored with mind and body, motivated by necessity, and our old employee ways became new ways of working – motivated by ownership.

For independent workers, watching wins on the Internet triggered a kind of gold fever. We bought domain names and Web sites (“picks and shovels”) and set out with our wits to stake a claim. We followed behind those who “hit a gold vein” on the Internet. We expected fast returns with the investment of our time and ingenuity. It didn’t happen.

Turning the Century

In this great cultural shift, we are finding places for the work we created for ourselves – subcultures where we can work in new ways that become comfortable and familiar. In various forms, we are coming up with ways that make our lives better. And, if something makes our lives better, why not bring it to the world?

We are beginning to believe in ourselves. 

We have come to the end of the idea that profit is the sole reason for business. There is an army of people coming into the economy, busy at work with social and environmental responsibility. We are conscious human benefactors, bringing either goods with service or services with goods.

The heart and work of creativity

Artists and entrepreneurs are problem solvers. We keep inventing a better way; getting closer to the ideal we imagine. We have a natural desire to work because we’re solving problems we care about, personally. We sacrifice for what we imagine will improve the world, and we love the work required to achieve that purpose.

Regardless of the economy, inspired and creative workers still work, pouring time and resources into their dreams. Be inspired. Own your time and do the work your ideas demand.

When you recognize that having a dream energizes you for life’s long haul, you can explore that space like an artist. Find out what’s real about your dream. Get the information you need, tinker with possibilities and test feasibility like an entrepreneur. Find the things that work and let go of the things that don’t. Use the money you have wisely.

Home is a natural environment to discover the things that matter only to you. Make space there to exercise private intellectual freedom. Follow the way of working that pays you back in energy and a self-renewing desire to work. Create a new workflow system that suits you and settle in for the long haul. Do everything you can to get support, inside and outside of the home.
Over time the you blends with your work as you own your time and productivity. Life will hand you what you need, to do what you are meant to do.

———

Elizabeth Diane Martin is a business development philosopher and theorist, working with people who are developing an occupational structure around their personal talents and passions. With a background in computers and small business development, Elizabeth is also a professional creative writer and emerging artist. She offers material for personal growth, especially for creative people working solo, representing themselves on the Internet.

Connect with the blog.

We, at the same time…

The Art of Perspective newsletter header
(The graphic includes abstract images of trees by the artist Piet Mondrian, on or about 1912.)

Since 2012, my monthly commentary email, The Art of Perspective. carried encouragement to my readers about positive life perspective, meaningful occupation, and natural entrepreneurship. This new blog is a platform to replace that commentary to show that all three conditions exist where a person’s work flows from the heart.

What the commentary lacked was a demonstration of the tools I use. In this blog, I am making myself the first example of the effectiveness of my ideas. Your results may vary, depending on the extent to which you utilize the full concept.

I will attempt to show how what I recommend to others works for me.

  • I will expose my habits of being positive about life through a better understanding of my own mind and motivation.
  • I give myself permission to work meaningfully where others can see what I do. And before there can be a product or service that will work,
  • I offer an opportunity for others to test my ideas and give me feedback about their experiences.

What I offer is a thing that works for me. I can share the tool that works for me like a compass, telling me where I am in relation to the slow, almost imperceptible progress of goodness in my life. I connect the power of dauntless self-renewing motivation to the cycles of life that present opportunities for growth and inner strength.

The Cycle of Unconscious Response

I propose the idea that there is a closed loop of personal development in 12 phases. Each phase is a level of progress that has a logical sequence of unconscious responses to new events. At the end of that sequence is the appearance of a facet of good in a person’s life. The 12-phase cycle begins again, and just as life unfolds continuously, so does the cycle of these phases naturally overlap and appear in gradual increments, with no abrupt beginning or end.

The tool I offer is a model; an interpretation of the phases in easy-to-understand language that is applicable in a general way to the internal experience of any person. Although there are correlations to external experience, The Cycle of Unconscious Response is a map of the unconscious internal process. I propose that this process is common to all human beings.

Each phase of The Cycle is recognized separately, and will not shake any preconceptions about life. But The Cycle as a whole is a new approach to understanding unconscious behavior. As I applied this discovery to my life for many years, it became easier to understand because it mirrors the systems we find in nature: 12 months; the seasons; seeds of new growth that progress to maturity, go dormant and spring to life again.

The difference in The Cycle of Unconscious Response is that it facilitates reflection on a person’s life — objectively and as a whole — to see the presence of good, which ultimately reveals a sense of individual purpose. If you can see this as I do, as a natural phenomenon that gives insight into the human spirit, it takes on the quality of a scientific discovery.

Here is one of the greatest influences in my search for facts unseen, The classic personal account of Watson and Crick’s groundbreaking discovery of the structure of DNA:

 

The boundaries of the language in The Cycle of Unconscious Response are these; that it has:

  • No reference to age or gender.
  • No reference to religious or spiritual doctrines.
  • Commonality of internal experience, not wealth or poverty, culture or nationality.
  • Space for proofs and disproofs; that is, as used by others, it may be modified to improve the form so that it matches the common internal human experience, perceived through observing unconscious behavior.

Thoughtful comments are accepted to further a collaboration in discovery.

Trailblazing in Colorado – a reflection

For art and innovation philosophers,
dauntless spirits and wisdom seekers,
those chiseling out their path
in solid granite
led by the clarity of singular vision

We attempt to pull words
together
knowing they barely resemble
now
the future of our hopes.

Using the art of perspective
a microscope
of our wondering
mind’s eye…

See the source,
the breath of life,
its movement
in our very selves.

By Elizabeth Diane Martin,
on bringing the unconscious to the surface

 

Creating unconsciously

"Phoenix: A self-portrait" by Elizabeth Diane Martin
“Phoenix: A self-portrait” by Elizabeth Diane Martin; conte crayon and marker

Art brings something to us that never existed before. The WOW! factor is – I’ve never seen that before!

In the normal scheme of things, the artist’s life makes no sense. And yet out of this ‘nonsense’ comes intriguing, amazing and beautiful creations. THAT is creativity! Something that amazes.

Is creativity like spontaneous combustion? Where does it begin? What is its original substance? Original thought is unconscious; it is not “matter.” And for some, if it’s not physical, it doesn’t matter! But artists – and entrepreneurs – are the type of people who work the intangible until it becomes tangible.

What most people don’t realize is that they are being creative when they work at something no one else cares to do. It’s in the working it out that we lose track. The working out is in the physical, and the process is a different kind of logic – steady, gradual and straight in its own way.

Unconscious behavior varies with personality and how that person processes information. Nurturing an original idea takes attention, perspective, strength, and commitment. This is the source of originality.

Creativity is a natural phenomenon. We can know what we often wonder about the creative process by observing our own unconscious actions. Ultimately, the benefit of creativity is as intangible as its seed. Joy. Delight. Laughter. Amazement. Stimulation. Humanity. Discover your private world of creativity.