You, too? Do you have a love-hate relationship with your brain?
If you do, you are in good company here in rainforest mind world.
It might be because, as one reader said, “sometimes it is really too powerful and goes too fast.”
Or, you have so many interests and so much curiosity, as another reader put it, “…I am so much and so many, so it is difficult to know who I truly am. I don’t want to be just one thing, one person, in only one way, that is very limiting – I need that space in my mind palace. And that becomes complicated for others. So to them, I am just weird and they walk away. I’m too complicated, too sensitive, too inquisitive and curious, too fast, as this highlights their own limits. I always need to slow down, to deal with ‘stupid’ questions and behaviour in the best possible way, and it’s tiring, I admit. And lonely.”
That brain of yours is nonlinear, random, creative, and nonconforming, as in: “…I’m allergic to convention, blend genres, go sideways, prefer to reinvent from scratch, etc, and most colleagues find this scary and unintelligible...”
Or how about this: You grew up with the pressure to achieve in academic settings, to be number one, to ace all of the tests. And some of you did. School assignments may have been too easy but you wanted the approval of parents and teachers so you completed the work and you did excel. But it may have felt empty. Or, I often hear from clients who felt the work was pointless so they lost motivation, stopped completing assignments, and were labeled lazy and defiant. Some of you experienced academic expectations with the added burden of trauma in the family: “I’ve spent a large part of my life chasing institutional prestige. Not because it’s something I intrinsically cared about, but because it was expected of me, and because (not unrelatedly) it reproduced a dynamic of toxic conditional acceptance I had with my father. There is nothing sustaining in that, of course, nothing to feed me; when you are only as good as your last perfect mark, the latest scholarship, …you must feed it, and it is insatiable...”
And, of course, there is the empathy and sensitivity that is often overwhelming. Your sense of social responsibility and justice that you can not ignore. Your passion to learn and read every book. Your creative capacity to catastrophize. The despair you feel when you realize your colleagues or your friends or your students or your spouse have no clue what you are talking about when you think you are communicating clearly because you have slowed your pace considerably and they are nodding like they get you, but they don’t. And they can’t.
No wonder you have a love-hate relationship with that magnificent mind palace of yours.
It’s a lot to manage.
And yet, here, in rainforest mind world, you are in good company.
And that’s a no-brainer.
To my bloggEEs: So, what do you think? Do you also experience the love-hate? Tell us about it. And thank you to the readers who are quoted above. Obviously, your comments add so much! Gratitude and love to all of you.
(Note: There is a short introduction to my work that was recently published on this site from the perspective of being a business owner. Check it out.)