Love. Life. Practice.

Personal Development with Gray Miller

Post 42

Some people will get why this is called “Post 42″ in spite of the fact that it’s the second post on the site.

Those who don’t, stop reading me, and go read Douglas Adams. He’s far more entertaining.

This is the post about Life. It comes on a Wednesday, as will all the posts about Life. Well, let me rephrase that: every monday there will be a post about Life. There will probably be other posts about life, but my commitment as your Love Life Practice blogger is to start the weekend with love, the week with practice, and throw in some thoughts about Life on Wednesdays, just to get you over the hump.

So, life. Life with a big-L. Yeah, that’s right, I’m going to tackle the subject. Which leads to the question…

Who the **** are you?

In the great movie Milk (if you haven’t seen it, you should stop reading and go etc) Sean Penn’s character is sitting in bed with his lover and says “I’m forty years old, and I feel like I haven’t done anything!

 

I saw that, and realized that I felt exactly the opposite. I was the same age, and I felt like I had done everything. Everything I really cared to do, anyway. The list at that point included:

Me & my grandson Harvey rockin' it in San Fran

 

  • Serving in the U.S. Marine Corps
  • Graduating with honors from college with a degree in dance
  • Raising four daughters to adulthood
  • Becoming a published author
  • Performing in NYC and other major U.S. cities with world-famous dance companies.
  • Producing a world-famous (within its niche) podcast
  • Traveling the U.S. as a speaker, educator, and performer
  • Being married and divorced
  • Running my own business for over a decade

…in short, experience was not something I felt was in short supply.The problem was, I couldn’t figure out what I wanted to do next. None of the things I had done still had any appeal to do again, and I was having a very hard time coming up with something that I wanted to do now.

Life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans. – John Lennon

This is the part where you expect me to say “And then I figured it out, and the answer is…” Sorry to disappoint you, but I don’t know. Who the **** am I? I’m just another schmuck trying to figure it all out, that’s all. That’s part of why I started this project: I’ve been looking for clues, for ideas, for other things to do.

Some of the results of my search have been wildly successful: a half-baked idea in 2007 for an alternative-sexuality unconference is now a worldwide phenomenon, and I just returned from a three-week tour of Europe meeting hundreds of people excited about sharing their experiences and passions.

I didn’t plan on that happening, but it did. As I write this, I’m in Washington, D.C., but much of my day has been spent planning out a future move to Seattle in 2012. Back when I saw that Milk film, I could not have predicted either one. The plans I made gang aft agley, to quote the poet, and instead I find myself doing my best to keep up with and make the best of where I end up, rather than where I planned to be.

“I had better results when I stopped doing
what you told me to do
and instead did what worked.”
- Sophia Sky, at a movement workshop in Seattle

That’s what this Life part of the blog is about. Everything from why I love my standing desk to how it feels to have my second grandson born on October 20th. Life is a pretty big project, and has a lot of moving parts. How they move and cooperate determines whether your life is complicated or complex, whether you are scrambling or dancing, whether you smile when you get up and go to sleep or whether you dread the day to come.

The answer, of course, is 42. It’s understanding the question that’s going to take a little more time…

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