I live by a code.
Now that may sound graybeard of me, but fuckit, my beard is pretty dang gray, and it’s true.
I’ve invested a couple of decades of my life sculpting this creation, working it to its simplest form. And yes, I’m am proud of it.
The empty husks of once useful (but ultimately too complex) philosophies lay all around me. And they were all philosophies — ways of thinking, interesting theories, and intricate modalities…
My code is rooted in how I feel.
How I. Feel.
And my code — my Very Cool Life Code, if you will — is that in moving through my life and making decisions, I do my best to follow what feels better to me.
It’s a very simple code.
And simple as it may be, living it is the most challenging adventure I’ve ever been on.
This is mainly due to existing cultural norms and the pesky presence of other people.
In other words, no one else is me. No one else knows (or really cares) what feels better to me. And the number of people who share my particular life code remain rare.
Living by such a code is quite a solitary experience (because it feels so good to do, I wouldn’t call it “lonely”), and the rewards of following such a discipline (because it IS a discipline) have been great.
I’ve begun to notice that the conflict in living in such a selfish way (because following how you feel requires you to be self-oriented and to follow your intuition) doesn’t really come from those closest to me (as I suspect those people are drawn to me as a direct result of such code), it’s more about those people on the periphery…
These people can be family members or old friends, and these people can even be clients (or those expressing an interest in your work). With a code like mine, people will think you selfish. Hell, they’ll say that to your face in a condemning tone. After a while you get used to the words though, and you can see how the words really have nothing to do with you (just like praise).
But… most all of us are sensitive to criticism. We all want to be thought to be GOOD. We all want to be part of the tribe.
And when you live by a code — if it’s really YOUR code (not something packaged and sold to you by some institution), a code forged from the intense heat of your life experiences — you will have to be willing to fight for it.
No, you don’t have to fight against those other people or institutions. (They won’t know what in the fuck you’re talking about anyway.)
It might look like that, especially when someone is in your face, but what you’re really fighting against is your own thoughts. The thoughts about how it’s not nice to be so selfish. Or about how it’s dangerous to live in a way that looks so different that everyone else. Or about the risk of being seen as foolish when everyone knows you can’t do it that way…
But the good thing about having a code is that you have a code to turn to in these moments.
The code is your domain, your home base, (your personal “obstacle” in the video below), the center you can always return to for guidance.
For that code to mean anything, you must be willing to stand behind it — to punch back at the thoughts that pop into your head (again, very often cleverly disguised as other people informing you of your wrongness in some way) — and you must tell them to Get the Fuck Off My Obstacle.
You don’t belong here.
I have nothing to offer you.
I live my way.
And you most certainly climb obstacles like old people fuck.
P.S. You don’t need to say any of these things. You don’t have to express a word to anyone else. You can if it feels better. But you don’t have to.
But you do have to allow yourself to think “not nice” thoughts when it feels better.