and beyond, really
Great piece as always! “Extraordinary emerges out of the ordinary” brought to mind a Swedish phrase I heard years ago, “lagom.” Lagom translates to some approximation of ‘just right, neither excessive nor sparse.’ For me, that phrase was the perfect recognition that big things come from simple everyday practices. It was a reminder to slowdown, chip away at things, put one foot in front of the other, keep my head down, and big things may (or may not) come out of everyday practices of doing my thing for the sake of doing my thing. For whatever reason, your piece today reminded me of “lagom” and I thank you for that!
I don't make resolutions either. I just have hopes for the new year. Or perhaps they are closer to goals. But I find the best things happen seemingly by accident (luck/grand design/fate/divine intervention?) if I just try things, take chances, or seize opportunities. I can't seem to make much happen, myself. 🤣
It's still 2020 here, who knew?
I like the term "intention" rather than mantra. A mantra you repeat to yourself hoping one day it will manifest itself. An intention you apply in your daily life to make it true.
I don't really do new year resolutions per say, for a whole long rant, but there is never a bad time to set goals. My 2023 goal is to experience life more intentionally, and this really resonates with that. Don't procrastinate, go through the steps, do the work, chip away at every day life and eventually you will find yourself in the extraordinary.... and that may not be exactly what you expected it to be.
brother it is the year 2018
The extra ordinary is believing in your abilities, Lyle. Dream big! Go for it all! As for me, at my age, my guiding mantra every morning is simply this " A lot of people didn't wake up this morning, but I DID! Give thanks and keep writing!" Thanks for always giving us something to think about.
Your writing today connected with my own journey. Especially the part about not skipping to the finale before doing the work. Good reminder. Thanks Lyle.
The extraordinary does indeed emerge out of the ordinary... I love that, and I love the power of short phrases—little spells, is how I think of them.
I don't know my 2023 mantra, maxim, credo, phrase, axiom, adage or motto yet -- it often takes some time to emerge. For 2022 it was "Breathing Colorful Attention," which I turned into a meditation here ⬇️
In 2021 it was "I'm in Love with Everything," which also didn't emerge until around the middle of that year. In 2020 perhaps it was "I've Been Most Places." I have a long list, and many of them are chapter or essay titles.
Good one Lyle.
“The problem is that I’m sometimes guilty of wanting to bypass all the hard work and fast-forward to the part where it exists in the world.”
I suspect all creatives feel this way. It’s so easy to picture in our heads what we would like to do, but the path to get there is much less clear. And, as you pointed out, not easy.
But you have it right. Just showing up and doing the work is a reliable approach. You can’t control the outcome, but you can put in the work. I came across that principle in a book recently, and it really resonated.
I don’t have a mantra for 2023. But I do have a new approach: everything is an experiment. It really takes the pressure off since I tend to be a perfectionist.
Love this format!!!!!! (And the mantra 😍)
I’m glad I’m not alone with the whole borne/Bourne thing. Every. Single. Time.
Great piece. Finding your blog was a bit of a revelation, as I’ve just started mine and I was struggling with finding a voice for it, and learning what I wanted it to be. I had a lot of ideas, but your Substack made me realize I want mine to be a little like yours, in the sense of an online series of memoir style pieces that reflect me and at the same time are relevant to other people’s lives. And as your reader, this piece resonates with ME, especially the “delusions of grandeur” bit. It’s quite similar to what I’ve been feeling all my life. Cheers, man, and here’s to more of these!
Wish you the best for 2023 and beyond! Now get to work man! Im already pacing myself so I don’t read up your entire substack so quickly and not have anything left to look forward to! Lol I’m only partly kidding.
A beautiful reminder, Lyle, about how the ordinary is everything.
To embrace the ordinary is to make the ordinary all we need. I like the experiments with fiction and form, Lyle. Keep on keeping on!