Sunday, August 4, 2013

Day 147 Portals of discovery

Yesterday, I came across this quote from author James Joyce: "A person's errors are his portals of discovery." And I've been thinking about this since then. In the 12-Step programs, we talk about defects of character, those actions, habits, tendencies, attitudes, that stand between us and freedom. We see them as burdens to be lifted, mistakes to be erased. But what if they are instead portals of discovery?

For the last few days, I've been in a bit of a slump. There are lots of circumstantial reasons (work is slow, a presentation was poorly attended and that was disappointing, hit a snag in my writing) but maybe it's just the wheel of life and I'm in a down place. I'm not worried about it; in fact, I'm quite cheerful about it, but I'm eating too much. Still on the plan, healthy meals, but way too many snacks. Grazing again off and on all afternoon.

If I go to character defect here, it just brings up shame and guilt. Not helpful. But if I go to portal of discovery, something else opens up for me: I find myself back in my commitment to curiosity. Not about why I'm doing this (it's a habit, a knee-jerk response) but rather curious about how I can shift out of this. What can I discover and how can I step through a portal into something else?


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