“It all started with a thirty day challenge” – that was what I told myself three years ago when I envisioned the distant future; little did I know what it was that I was actually starting.
Reflecting on this prophetic statement, the decision to persist with erratic posts over the course of a dreary September set me on a path that changed my life forever. Be it the embrace of psychological realism or meeting Twitter friends in distant lands, my life is a different picture.
In writing this post I conjured the Tolkien thought of the Hobbit’s moniker ‘There and Back Again’. Bilbo Baggins left the comfort of the Shire only to return after confronting an assortment of monsters, nefarious hoards and personal challenges. My quest has not been as fantastical as retrieving Smaug’s treasure, but it has been especially trying, and a meta-lesson in self-growth.
When Bruce Wayne in the Dark Knight accepted the antipathy of Gotham to be “the hero Gotham needed”, his identity was lost in the process – the symbolism of his alter-ego tarnished. No longer was the bat-man an expression of individual character, but something decided by the people. As a result, in the sequel Bruce was a listless, forlorn character at first.
Artful Man met the same fate, like a limb to be amputated I felt I could cut away the known reality and reinvent, but it turns out one cannot reinvent who they are.
True self-development is away from the clamour of social media — away from the spotlight. Not all will recognise this growth because their online investment is at the expense of their non-digital realm, but this unadulterated embrace of the visceral world is how a powerhouse of logic finds balance in a frenzied time.
I encourage all who wish to start making a mark, to start in the most earnest and honest manner possible. Build a foundation, as something more takes as long as it takes.
I found myself in a pit for two years, but I’m learning to climb.