Saturday, January 21, 2012

Brushing Your Teeth

I do brush my teeth. Well, at least I try to every day... though, I do admit sheepishly that there are some days it just falls off the agenda and it happens right before bed.... or the next morning... :) But anyway, ahem! - today's post is not a tutorial on hygiene, but highlights something I read a few weeks ago about brushing your teeth - more specifically what you think about when doing this mundane, everyday (supposedly, lol) task.

What do you think about? Oh, yes, there are many days I'm doing it as fast as possible to get the kids out the door and to school on time, so those days, I admit - I think about where my keys are, I wonder if I should have scraped the ice off the windows already, or if I remembered to pack a snack with their lunch.

But most days... most days I think about how to capture that light flare a little dreamier, or bokeh a little blurrier, what cute family I could persuade to have a session on the beach or which post processing actions I should splurge for. I wonder about the calibration of the color on my monitor and think about owning a sweet 28mm 1.4 lens someday. I resolve to make it a priority to capture a few more doggies soon, and I ponder the idea of going back to "redo" my wedding pictures with a boatload of textures.

Yes, you may have guessed it, but I am little obsessed with photography.

This article here is what confirmed it for me... I guess I am probably on the right path. It's a pretty great article, you should go read it now! And then come back. :) The message is simple, and what I have eluded to before. Whatever you end up thinking about when you are brushing your teeth (and not rushed!), is arguably, a passion. Ok, so sometimes I think about Brad Pitt, and yes - he could be considered a passion of sorts, but really - the "what you would rather be doing with your time" (ok, will you just get Brad Pitt out of your mind already!) is what I am trying to stay focused on. :) This picture I found on Pinterest is another way to say it:

And I can't think of a better mind-wondering time than when you are attending to the pearly whites.

The bulk of the article I linked to above is more to the opposite point. She was in research, and her mind wandered to photography every morning. It was then that she knew her path! Or at least knew that the path she was on wasn't quite right...

I used to work for a defense contractor. And they were an awesome company to work for. Every area had "teams" and we would work hard together to identify problems and opportunities for increased efficiency and tackle them in an organized manner. We would have weekly meetings, setting aside our productivity time to work on making our workplace better. And at each meeting, there would be a facilitator, helping the team to get the most out of the meeting by keeping to our agenda, diffusing fights and forcing us to examine root causes, both in relationships and work mishaps. I loved the facilitator role, and I volunteered to become one. So, I went through the pre-requisite week-long training with others who wanted the same, and we had a great week learning many new skills.

During the week, we were shown various videos on how to help your teams be the most efficient and honest, to help pull out their talents and ideas and facilitate working through their issues, and to help solve problems effectively, etc... and some were more abstract in their point. One day, one of those videos was about DeWitt Jones, a National Geographic photographer. He talked about everyday creativity, and how, in his line of work, he had to look at things a while before the image he wanted to get - what was interesting him in the frame - came across to him. The point he was trying to make to us, in the manufacturing business was that every problem has a creative solution, if you take the time to look hard enough. Yeah. I got that.

But I also got the bug.

That night, I could not. stop. thinking. about. photography.

I'm sure it was not what the instructors (or my company, for that matter!) were hoping for when they played the video - me obsessing for weeks over the fact that becoming a photographer someday was starting to burn up inside me - it sounded so exciting and satisfying and artistic - which then, working for a technical company, sounded insanely exotic. But I was already on a "career path", with an amazing company - so I ignored this feeling, over and over. I kept telling myself it was silly and impractical (there's my dream crusher again!, lol). I tried to ignore this passion the video was stirring inside me... but for months afterward, every down time I had was spent thinking about how amazing that would be and consequently trying to shove it out of my mind. Oy!

Hindsight is 20/20, eh?

Another relevant Pinterest gem:

When your idle mind is happy, it's pointing at the things you should be occupying your life with the most. I beg you to listen harder than I did! :)

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