5/7/10

The Motive Behind My Madness

Growing up, I experienced my share of sibling rivalry. Competition between children kind of comes naturally and it’s up to the parents to teach a fine balance. We are taught by society to "fend for ourselves" and when you look at thousands of years of nature, you will see that competition is how many species have survived.

But if we zoom out far enough, you may notice that nature as a large whole, isn’t really that competitive like we see in a quick National Geographic show about one species, rather nature is a well-oiled machine that is harmonious. Everything you can think of relies on something else whether that is the food chain, the weather, plant life, you name it.

I believe in slotting myself into nature and how it works. I have probably had one third of my life in a very self-centered state where I had the attitude, "I am looking out for Number One…screw everyone else." I think in looking back, I had to do a bit of that in order to progress just because I was a doormat for too many people at one time. But now, it would be nice to see everyone happy. (insert the "you can’t please everyone all the time" quote if you must)

Of course, I want to succeed at certain things in my life, I think we all have our goals, dreams and ambitions, but we are being overfed on this mentality to the point where we all have conflicting goals, dreams and ambitions that do not work harmoniously with others around us.
I’ll let you in on a secret about me that I haven’t really shared before (not because it’s earth-shattering though….lol)

I have had a very difficult time in my career/relationships being myself because anytime I have done well, someone around me is threatened. This happened when I was the boss, this happened when I was working with co-workers, this happened on tours, this happened in the studio, this happened working with or producing other artists. This happened at BBQs, family functions…just everywhere. I have always had to downplay what I am doing because someone with an insecurity who feels crappy about what is going on in their life didn’t want to hear about something good going on with me. I blame my crappy grades in elementary school from not wanting to do too well on a test or you’d get picked on. A friend recently shared with me how he would turn his paper over if it had a high grade so insecure students wouldn’t feel badly about themselves. But you know the weirdest part of insecurity? You don’t want to hear about people doing well around you, but you ASK THEM ANYWAYS! It’s the most bizarre thing in the world.

Now, my nature is ALWAYS to be interested in others, because I simply adore people. But my reaction to someone else’s insecurity is generally to just downplay what I am doing. I have unfortunately stopped making music at some points in my life because someone near me feels better when I am at their level (misery loves company quote….)

The secret is that the real reason I started an online community was to try and combat this ‘Me Society’ that has been ruining us for quite a few generations now. I was so sick of artists just saying "Look at me" and I was sick of people being threatened by them to the point of their inadequacy forcing a depression. Some of my own depression came from having to dumb down everything I knew I was good at.

What I have always been hoping from with a community like ours is to have a deep core of the word "encouragement" where we could get everyone back on the same level again. Please don’t mistake this for me suggesting you have to dumb things down. I don’t mean this in your personal growth, I mean this as human beings. It saddened me that in the past, I haven’t been able to personally be the artist I wanted to be, I hate that I couldn’t share the art with people so they wouldn’t feel threatened (sorry if that in ANY way comes off condescending but…) but more so, on the flip side, I HATE that there are literally millions of people out there who in feeling so sad and inadequate don’t want others around them to do well. By the way, I also have a secret motive to get rid of the phrase, "check out MY______" (insert whatever song title is currently in your comments section) ;) It’s not that I don’t want to see what you are doing, but shameless self-promotion just comes off rough… I challenge you to ditch it from your vocabulary. :) Overall, I am sad when we can’t function like nature. I am sad when we can’t realize we ARE part of nature!

We ALL have a gift. (love him or hate him, Mr. Rogers was correct; we ARE all special…I don’t believe that is earned, it’s just encouraged!) If you think being special is something you have to earn, I believe that is why we are failing as a society. If all we are meant to do is earn the "special" title, we are simply surviving and not really living. A Job is something we work at. A Career is something we earn. But being special IS a gift that simply needs to be recognized and explored as a good starting point! Your fingerprint is unlike anyone else. Your DNA is yours! Pretty cool, huh? I don’t think that should bring on a lazy attitude like you don’t have to work, it’s just good to know that there is nobody else like you! It’s why I love meeting people! What we do with our unique brand and how we can contribute to the bigger purpose of the world’s existence is up to us individually. (yup, we have to share the world, crazy thought, huh?) It’s up to us to slot ourselves into the well-oiled machine nature originally intended.

It’s not always American Idol or I Can Dream (oh, don’t get me started there) but we all have gifts and talents. We should not only be able to express them openly, but feel safe in a COMMUNITY, not ME SOCIETY where we can grow as human beings! This is why I started this thing 4 years ago. It’s the same mentality that goes into the two Musician sites I am involved in. We CAN grow together as the human race. Someone else doing well doesn’t have to mean you don’t do well!

Nature reminds me that if we give and take equally, the cycle functions. But what doesn’t seem to work is selfishness or insecurity.

I think those two could be the opposite of each other, but for the most part may go hand in hand. I’ve been both.

Is it that hard to want what is best for each other? Or have we been way too burned to even raise a finger to care? Please understand, I have been really burned and my middle name was bitterness for again approx one third of my existence so don’t think I don’t get it, I really feel your pain!

And if you currently don’t want what is best for people around you, I guess my question is, how can we get you turned around? ;) Because you know, this world desperately needs you in the cycle!

Community; one of the craziest concepts, right? Lol

Love you tons and tons!
Karen :)

"Earth and sky, woods and fields, lakes and rivers, the mountain and the sea, are excellent schoolmasters, and teach some of us more than we can ever learn from books." ~John Lubbock

2 comments:

  1. Well said. Been there done that. Even amongst my closest friends the ugly head of insecurity rises to claim another meal to feed its never ending hunger.

    You friended me on MySpace as Stever2, and I finally got around to listening to your music and reading your bio to find the real Stever, and now this blog. I enjoy your insights, so thank you for speaking up.

    Feel free to visit us at the Knights of Moleskine, Spirit and Ale...and thanks again for listening to my music too.

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