i have managed to become involved in some cultural changes happening at my workplace. we are working to create a recovery oriented system of care (rosc) where there has been little visibility of recovery before. i know it sounds simple, but i refuse to be that naive. if it were easy, it would already be in place. there are some barriers to this that exist and i am not even sure i am familiar with most of them. there is much to do. i was chatting with some co-workers about it yesterday and i was intimating that part of i am energized by the idea of change and had been involved in creating business and redirecting it for as long as i could remember.
in 1982, i started working for a friend who had spent years developing an after hours club in chicago. i had the opportunity to contribute ideas, concepts, and labor which helped create a fairly well-known night spot that was around for 10 years.
in 1987 i started working for an uncle and his friend for a very small travel agency that was basically a bucket shop- reselling international airline tickets to customers that were issued by wholesalers at highly discounted prices. i was fortunate enough to contribute ideas, concepts, and labor which helped steer this company into a 17 million dollar business over the course of 10 years. a definite bonus was my ability to travel all over the globe and widen my world-view.
interspersed throughout my life, i have worked at the openings of at least 12 restaurants, each time afforded the opportunity to offer ideas, concepts, and labor that would result in the creation of something new. there has mostly been a source of creation and excitement as i showed up for work on a daily basis.
historically, the sad and painful truth is that mental health and substance abuse have accompanied me on my journey. as i review all these fantastic opportunities, i realize that these issues were the david to my goliath. i can now see that the gifts of imagination and inspiration are accompanied by self-doubt and a drive to self-destruct. these thrill killers are an integral part of my psychological make-up and have demonically fueled by drugs and alcohol over the years.
since getting sober, i have had the fortune of helping to start a counseling program directly followed by a resurgence of ptsd which became emotionally global. i have developed an hiv community newsletter that has been publishing for 5 years now. i have helped a friend create a not for profit organization so he could develop his philanthropic efforts and get funding. most of these things were simple ideas that became inspiration which led to action and creation.
currently, along with the culture change i am involved in, is an acute awareness of my vulnerabilities. they are definitely with me still. i am much more aware now, and have become skilled at maneuvering them without numbing them out. it is very exciting for me to be part of this change, especially because i don’t know where they will lead.
i am following my heart and my instinct here. it is challenging. it engages me. my hopes are ignited- both selfish and philanthropic. i want to succeed and i want to do well. i was reporting to a co-worker that i always find myself in a position to ask questions about making things better. she replied that i put myself in that position. her acumen startled me. i guess it’s true. this must be part of my skill set. i hope it is the work i am here to do. it sure feels right.
It’s rather splendid to think of all those great men and women who appear to have presented symptoms that allow us to describe them as bipolar. Whether it’s Hemingway, Van Gogh… Robert Schumann has been mentioned… Virginia Woolf, Sylvia Plath… some of them with rather grim ends… Stephen Fry
today i found myself trudging as i always do, but with a strange and renewed skip in my step. i’m not sure how long it will last, or if it will wane as quickly as it appeared. either way, it feels pretty damn good. there is a fresh inovigorated zest with regard to some changes at one of my workplaces. i have been looking at assisting with editing, enhancing, and modifying services. this process of creation has become like a drug for me. it definitely stimulates my brain and stirs my soul.
if there were a thing i could categorize as “what i do”, i think that the process of creation and re-creation would be at the top of the list. i have been involved in this process in almost all of the jobs that created spiritual growth in my life- starting at the age of 25. so here i find myself once again, contemplating getting on the rollercoaster that is this my work and experiencing the ride.
more details will follow, certainly, but i wanted to affirm that a new phase in being ushered in. i know that when my brain is tickled, i am happier and more productive. it feels as if i am doing what i am supposed to be doing. and i am very happy and grateful that i may be going for a ride…