For all the prescribed methods aimed at maintaining youth, one that is NOT found in the skin care aisle, is the act of learning something new. This results in Neuroplasticity (the brain's ability to reorganize itself by forming new neural connections throughout life - allowing neurons in the brain to compensate for injury and disease and to adjust their activities in response to new situations or to changes in their environment.)
I did that yesterday, and fully expect to begin feeling younger, thank you. It was a small task, really: Wire Wrapping. It's not Rocket Science, surely, but a skill that I had attempted once, and rejected when the result was imperfect.
What helped me to persevere this time, was a big, gorgeous Magnesite teardrop that I VERY much wanted to use. I didn't have a large enough bail to make the pendant, and the top-drilled hole was from front-to-back rather than side-to-side. Curses.
With new-found determination, I Google-ed "Wire Wrapping" and came up with TONS of step-by-step instructions. (Funny thing about asking for help and following directions - it actually WORKS!) The Perfectionist Bug still stung me, and I twisted and mangled through several feet of wire before getting it "Just So." But get it, I DID! And now I have a new skill, have opened the door to unlimited shapes of fabulous stones that I will know how to work with, AND have this gorgeous turquoise blue necklace to show for it.
As it often does, one thing lead to another, and today, while en route to the newly re-opened Rodin Museum, I was drawn to the display stand of a local designer near the Farmer's Market in Rittenhouse Square. I've passed by her often, but never stopped, thinking that I since make jewelry myself, why would I bother?
Well, Michelle Judge (click here for her website) studied sculpture and creates incredible pieces with (guess what?) WIRE. I was utterly impressed with her designs, and happily bought a fantastic pair of fluorite earrings.
What didn't cost anything, and really made my day, was the nice chat we had about stones and creating. AND being inspired from having found...Something New!
Several weeks ago, a good portion of the Nation held their collective breaths watching Nik Wallenda traverse Niagara Falls and, aside from the sheer spectacle of the event, I was struck by several things.
First of all, being born into the famous Wallenda family made this man genetically predisposed to make this kind of feat his life’s work. Like law enforcement, the military, and mortuary services, this daredevil career choice is definitely a legacy one. And because it was what he was born and raised in, what we see as being outrageous and unattainable is more-or-less commonplace to him. He eats it; breathes it; sleeps it.
The network showed footage of his practice sessions that imagined and re-created the exact conditions he would experience as we all watched live. This didn’t involve just positive thinking or hoping for favorable conditions – it meant full-on water hoses dousing him with gushes of spray that were just as turbulent as the unique micro weather pattern that the falls themselves create. As we gasped and squinched our eyes shut while glued to the TV screen, watching as the wind gusted and the balance pole swayed, this man had ALREADY experienced these conditions again and again and again. It was only US that were experiencing it for the first time.
What spoke to me most – and what applies to Creative Endeavorists, I think – were long segments over the course of the crossing when the network announcers, in their best High Drama Voices regaled us with the seemingly endless list of risk factors, alarming depths of the Falls, and the fact that no one had EVER successfully attempted the feat. It was Ambulance Chasing at its best. Interspersed between these raucous blasts of doom, were brief glimpses of the sure and steady voice of Nik’s father speaking to him from a control booth where he watched every moment, and each of his son’s exacting movements to guide him, assure him, and encourage him along his way, one step at a time.
That was the takeaway from this for me, that no matter what the attempt du jour is, there will ALWAYS be a voice of doom/doubt/nay-saying. In fact, there may be MANY.
But there is also ALWAYS a voice that says “Yes!”/”Why not try?”/”If not you, who?”
It may end up being a bit of a shouting match, and you just KNOW which will be louder. But, given the options, which voice would you rather listen to?