In Our Own Ways

Brittany and Satana courtest BasketBlazerTiVo and I watched “Glee” this morning at 5:15 a.m. Red rubber unitards and sex riots at 6 a.m. is enough to puncture anyone’s psyche.

I am listening to something a lot less harmonic than Britney Spears while I drive these days. I am listening to Jim Fay’s contributions to the social parenting handbook and remembering again why self-help products are so addictive.

I have my ideals, and then I have my reality. Finding how I get from “Brittany” to “Britney” (or the icon she represented, in this “Glee” case) is the ultimately question of life. Unlike “TV reality,” I know I won’t have my life changing revelations after a quick hit of nitrous oxide during a cavity filling.

Revelations are just the subconscious popping up to remind us that high school kids dancing madly is the way we all used to see ourselves. Unfettered and free.

Jim Fay says some people are “Winners” and some are “losers”– not by definition, but by the way they conceive themselves. Everyone comes up against obstacles on their way to becoming.

The winners, he says, believe they can. The losers don’t. Knowing where you fall on the spectrum is as simple as subtracting the number of times you say “I can’t” from the number of times you know you can. If your number is a positive one, you tend to be a winner. If you think “I can’t” more often than not, you land on the other end of the spectrum. Those people call themselves “unmotivated” or “procrastinators.” But what they really are is people who don’t believe in themselves.

I’ve been thinking about this as I develop myself creatively. It isn’t as simple as it sounds. I walk the line in my belief that I can be the person I see in my ideals. Fortunately, my confidence unwavers in many other things I do. I can ride my bike really well! I can teach you to write better. I can sing the heck out of that Nanci Griffith song. I will make your life better for knowing me. Winners give themselves credit, too, for all the parts of their lives where they fly free.

Maybe you and I will stand in our own ways occasionally. But I notice that more often, when I GO in my own way, the ride seems comfortable and happy. And the successes I have along the way — whatever they may be — start to appear like building stones in my own Emerald City.

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