Inspiration vs. Expectation

July 30th, 2010 by Steve Pavlina

This 30-day inspiration trial is almost too strange. I feel like a blind man excitedly examining a rainbow. There’s definitely something there, but I’m not sure I have the faculties to make sense of it. I feel a bit foolish trying to explain it. It’s tough to translate the experience into words; words alone can’t do it justice.

Is it scary? Most definitely. Why is it scary? Partly because I have no idea what’s going to happen next or where this will lead, and the logical part of my mind is freaking out a bit. It’s difficult to feel grounded and secure.

I have no idea where I left my comfort zone. I really can’t even see it from where I’m standing.

The pace of change I’m experiencing is extremely rapid. So much has already shifted in just the first week, including a lot I haven’t blogged about. Honestly I’d have to write for at least 5-6 hours per day just to explain all the stuff that’s happening, so I can really only blog about the highlights. Unfortunately, it’s not that easy to identify what’s a highlight at this time.

Even the blogging aspect falls within the purview of the trial, so I’m only blogging when I feel inspired to do so, and only about the details that flow through me in that inspired state. That part can be frustrating. My logical mind often voices objections, pointing out that we should also share X, Y, and Z, since it would help tie things up in a neater, less disjointed bundle. Unfortunately the inspiration just takes off in some other direction, and in order to stick with this trial, I have to run with it. So whatever comes through when I’m blogging, I just have to trust that it will be enough.

My logical mind is constantly trying to play catch-up. Here’s how that’s playing out:

I get an inspired idea, and once I recognize it as such, I take action on it almost immediately. Those actions generate some results. And those results can cause ripples of change (i.e. consequences). My mind then attempts to make sense of those ripples and predict what effects they’re likely to have.

Suppose I feel inspired to suggest a certain idea to Rachelle that pertains to our relationship. I act immediately and discuss it with her as soon as possible. We both like the idea and come to some new decisions. My mind then tries to understand the consequences of those decisions, so it can begin envisioning a new future consistent with them.

This is how my mind would normally operate before this trial.

However, what’s happening now is that while my logical mind is doing its usual mental processing, trying to get a clearer grasp of what’s happening, I’m already off and running with the next inspired idea. That leads to more actions, more results, and more ripples.

While my mind is waiting for the ripples to settle, I just keep splashing around. More ripples are generated, and those ripples interact with each other. The consequences of different actions combine to create blended consequences that are very difficult to fathom.

Imagine you quit your job one day. Then a couple days later, you move to a new city. Then a few days after that, you buy a new car. And then after a few more days, your best friend passes away. That would be a very severe week of change, and your mind would have a hard time keeping up. Now imagine experiencing this pace of change for a whole month without a break. I’m exaggerating this of course, but I think you get the idea.

By stacking so many changes on top of each other, prediction becomes almost impossible. If there’s a pattern to these ripples, I can’t see it clearly yet.

This frustrates my logical mind’s attempts to predict where things are headed. Consequently, it’s beginning to throw in the towel on even trying. It’s not quite there yet though — it’s still cussing a lot.

The net effect is that doing this trial is like taking my future expectations and constantly erasing them. As soon as a new future expectation begins to form, I erase it again. Every day, often multiple times per day, I keep going back to a blank slate.

With no clear future expectations that I can comprehend, I can’t derive any sense of security from knowing where things are going. I have to keep coming back to the present moment, breathing through whatever is arising right now.

This is very difficult for me. But I’m so curious to know what it’s like to live this way for a while, and my curiosity is keeping me going.

I suspect that given enough time on this path, I’ll begin to get used to it, and it won’t feel so scary after a while. I’m hoping that happens sooner rather than later.

The good news is that the degree I can attempt to predict where things are headed, which may be nothing but a conceit at this point, it does appear that this is shaping up to be a very positive transition period. There’s some fear but also a lot of happy excitement.

Most of the inspirations that have come through during this first week seem to be concentrating on emotional healing (of myself and others) and a transformation of pretty much all of my relationships in some way or other. I expect that those parts of my life will be in a very different place by the end of this trial. Even if I were to stop now, some major shifts have already occurred. But I can’t predict what things will look like at the end of the 30 days because the pace of change is just too rapid. However, I do have reasonable cause to believe this trial will leave me much better off than when I started. If I were to stop now, I could easily make that claim.

I can’t believe it’s only been 7 days. That’s been more than enough time to conclude that this path is worthy of further exploration.

I wonder what would happen if a group of people did such a trial together as a team effort. That would just be explosive to watch.

I do appreciate all the love and support people have been sending my way this week. The extra social support really helps. Knowing that people are finding value in these updates gives me more motivation to keep going. So thank you for that!



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