What Are You Going to Do Otherwise?


A huge passion of mine is ninjutsu, which I do three times a week. On Monday I felt a bit resistant towards going. Throughout the day leading up to the hour-long drive to class, I fought against it – and then the best question ever came into my mind!

“What are you gonna do otherwise?”

My answer was, “Probably play on my computer or something.”

I said back to myself, “Is that going to make you a better ninja?”

I smirked and replied, “No….”

Very effective. Next time you are resistant to something you know you WANT to do (not should do), ask yourself that question.

Don’t wanna go to the gym? What would you be doing instead? Watching TV? Is that going to get you the body you want? Are Ross and Rachel gonna rip your abs and blast your fat? Nuh uh.

Don’t feel like working on your novel? What are you gonna do? Read Cracked and Buzzfeed? Are you insane? Open your flipping MS Word and type, bitch!

Don’t feel like practicing your oboe? Let me guess…you’d rather check out what OTHER people are doing on Facebook.

Sitting around and wishing for stuff is gonna get you nowhere. We have limited time on this plane of existence. You need take whatever steps possible to get you to where you want to be. Enjoy each step. Just because steps are small do not mean you should brush them off and fill up your time with meaningless junk. You can do that if you want, but do the important things FIRST. The more little steps you take, the closer you will be, the better you will be, the more you will be making of your life. Everything large is made of something small.

Tonight I’m going to class again. I usually want to go, but I always go regardless of how I feel, and I am ALWAYS glad I do. You will be glad you take your steps, too. But DO them.

Recommended Reading:

The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles
Turning Pro: Tap Your Inner Power and Create Your Life’s Work
Do the Work

The Importance of Obsession

I think that to get the most out of life you have to be obsessed with what you love.

Otherwise you just dip your feet in, get them damp, then dry off – boring. Fucking dive in, man. Get soaked. Be completely drenched. Immerse yourself until you are absolutely covered, annihilated by your dreams. Let them overtake you.

Do you notice that the people you admire are the ones who obsess over what they do? It’s never the people who sort of have a dalliance with something they kinda like – those people tend to be mocked. The really admirable ones are the ones who obsess, who swallow their passion whole, without teeth, but who will bite down on something as soon as it appears so it won’t escape.

They will stay up for days, not eat, and will sustain themselves purely on what they love. They will ignore all else. They will live off scraps so they have all time to themselves.

They give up the less important things. They only hang out with people who support them. The ones who don’t, get spat upon or laughed at, or simply brushed off. Whatever, you say, my life, my love, is most important – otherwise what am I here for?!

You may live for something completely different than everyone else, but you have a passion, a talent – even if it’s for something you think is not “important” – just know what it is you love, and what it is you obsess over – and let it take over your brain.

For me, if i have something i love, it’s all i focus on. It could be a person, a book, a drawing, a project – and the things that get forgotten about are things that fall aside, to make room for the important fascinations – the ones that always return, even if i take a break – the ink drawings, the delectable words of books, the luscious fruits, the crashing waves, the prose and memoirs, the dogs with their wiggling butts. They are all my heart-thumping obsessions.

Sometimes, like anyone, i forget them – either I am so tired I zombify, or I am deadened by winter. I start to think nothing matters. But when I constantly barrage myself with inspiration, at all times, I then recall my former passion.

When you are forgetful, this is when it is most important to obsess. When you are depressed, this is when it is most important to treat yourself with the utmost care.

When you really want to do something, and it’s not natural to you, you MUST obsess or you will not make it natural – things become fluid and easy when you just throw yourself in, all or nothing. Breathe it, inhale it, suffocate in it. It will become as ingrained as a cavity. It may fade, and if it does, just push yourself off that cliff again and save yourself with immersion.

Pursuing your passions is part of this – to deny yourself your lifeblood, your brain candy, is like telling the universe to fuck off.

I realized last night that all religions are based on the fear of death – none of us want to die, and so we focus (if that person has a religion) on how to live “properly” so that we can have a nice afterlife, because we don’t want to die. We’re all terrified of it. In order to transcend death, leave your legacy behind – do something with the life you have – even if you transcend death, you will no longer have a physical body to enjoy earthly pleasures. Even if you reincarnate, you will be a different being with a different experience.

And so, who you are now – you must express that. You are only YOU, once. In THIS body, once.

Obsess, create, love, in only the way YOU can, right now, this lifetime.