The real definition of insanity.

During a recent conversation, my daughter crowned an argument by reciting a popular saying.
“The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.”
Clever kid.
“Perhaps,” I replied.
“But isn’t it also insane to do the same thing over and over and expect the same results?”
She was dumbfounded.
I was being quite sincere.
What happens to experts and most other comfortable people?
We end up making the conscious unconscious.
Our beliefs become fossilized and seduce us to continue “our ways.”
Our existing knowledge and situation dulls our senses to the reality of the changing world.
Our minds become protected by layers of fat we call experience.
And we rationalize our habits for dealing with the world—doing the same things over and over—with our comfort and brilliant achievements.
This story, this self-reinforcing delusion, is the real definition of insanity.
We’re insane to think we can save or consume our way to peace and happiness.
We’re insane to believe we can control people or work them to the brink of meltdown with no blowback.
We’re insane to imagine that we can ravage the Earth to our heart’s content.
We’re insane to focus on the urgent at the expense of the important.
And we’re insane to use the same thinking and methods and expect wildly different results.
Have you been doing pretty much the same things over and over?
Does it feel compulsive and unsatisfying?
Then stop.
Get out of your office.
Leave your store.
Step away from the factory.
Turn off your computer.
Heaven forbid, power off your cell phone.
And open your child-like eyes to the reality of the world.

Please stop thinking.

In the winter of 2013, I had a thought.
Or, to be more precise, it had me.
It went like this.
If someone I loved was stuck in her story.
Suffering with a desperate, hopeless life.
And, by accident, she lost her memory (her story).
Would I step in and rewrite it?
In her mind.
Or, would I be honest and tell her “the truth?”
Her history.
More than two years later, that crazy idea is now a screenplay.
And I’m now a screenwriter.
Because I wrote a screenplay (pretty simple, huh?).
But it never would have happened.
If I had really thought about it.
Because thinking is reductive.
Thinking wants to simplify everything.
Including you!
Why are you writing a screenplay?
Who are you to write a screenplay?
Do you know how many people are writing screenplays?
But you’re not what you think.
You’re what you do.
You’re not simple.
You contain multitudes!
Thinking about whether or not to do something brings nothing but doubt.
If you really feel it, you should do it.
“Okay,” you’re probably thinking.
“But shouldn’t I think about how to do it.”
Sure, but not much.
Because, you’ll never figure out the how before you begin.
Knowing will never lead to doing.
Doing is what creates knowing.
And growth.
That was one of many discoveries while writing “I am Keats.”
So please stop thinking and grow!
You are not what you think.
You are what you uniquely feel.
And, especially, what you do with those feelings.
Right now, I am Keats!
Who are you?