making contact with people i admire is like lobbing them a tennis ball. the person could be a contributor on Medium, a new Twitter follower, or a writer i discovered via circuitous online search.
human connection is a numbers game and i cast a wide net in an attempt to receive a respectable return.
often, i just write to say, thanks! keep up the great work and i’m so relieved i found you! sometimes it’s that message plus, i read your e-book and noticed a few typos, here they are in order of appearance.
then it’s their turn. but in the meantime it’s hard not to imagine a desired outcome.
my fantasy: we’ll become great friends and he’ll connect me with a fantastic opportunity that is beyond anything i can currently imagine.
my reality: often, nothing.
so, i concentrate on what i can. persevering, @@i continue sending new messages to new people in spite of rejection. in response to rejection.@@
i’m like a tennis ball feeder. for the uninitiated, it’s a monstrous contraption. oscillating on the far side of the net, the machine diabolically, relentlessly, steadily spews tennis balls until, mercifully, your coach unplugs it from a power strip attached to an extension cord connected to some far away outlet.
despite the machine’s stamina there are a lot of ways it can fail. angles are the issue. balls sent too high sail over the fence. too low, and they don’t clear the net. if the nozzle's pointed in the wrong direction, they get stuck in the chain link surrounding the court. it’s an easy fix, though. you simply adjust the nozzle. now the balls clear the net but stay inside the fence; they’re fast but not so forceful they get wedged in the chain link.
in terms of my life, repositioning the nozzle means returning to myself, since people are beyond my control. from there, my thoughts (should) turn to:
am i truly doing everything in my power to connect and make myself someone worth responding to?
am i meeting enough people?
am i, as Julia Cameron says, praying to catch the bus and running as fast as possible?
my answer is...no, not exactly. i can improve by dividing my energy between acting and trusting, or between the head (running to catch the bus) and the heart (praying to do so).
this theoretical running is exactly as miserable as the real thing. it includes attending events, upping my Twitter game, and talking to strangers. (side question for society: why wasn’t there a childhood caveat about stranger chitchat? something like, eventually, when you’re rational and weigh more than 37 pounds soaking wet, it’ll be weird if you don’t talk to them.)
the other side to this is trusting, or praying to catch the bus. it’s sending positive energy in a given direction by visualizing like there’s no tomorrow, which i’ll explain tomorrow.
what proverbial tennis balls are you lobbing these days? any returns? tell me in the comments!
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