Saturday, February 26, 2011

the man who washes lions

"the key to change...
is to let go of fear."
- rosanne cash

being stuck is a painful place to be. at least it is for me. i look around at all the things that normally inspire and motivate me. i reach. but still i sit immobile in my seat.  but what is it that glues me so tightly in place? i contemplate. i ruminate. i examine. i ignore. i disguise. no matter what i do, it's the same little bugger that it was when i first began.


fear is a lot like that lion in the bathtub. my job is to wash the lion. but i have to be present and aware enough not to get eaten in the process. in looking at that fear, i have to accept the danger that comes along with the job. it’s easy to become sidetracked by analyzing it.  holding onto it.  absorbing it into my personality.  taking it out and showing it to others like it was something of great value.  but any of these options is like letting the lion eat me.


the thing i have to remind myself to do is to simply look at it. go ahead and accept the feelings of fear.  but not cling to them like some useless life raft. if i can just be careful and mindful in washing the lion. just get on with it. then, whether my fear comes at me head on in broad daylight or creeps up on me sideways, i’ll be able to avoid getting lost in my own sad story and even, perhaps, let in some joy to lend balance and encourage hope.

move. else stagnate. get back to washing those lions...

“life is like riding a bicycle. 
to keep your balance you must keep moving.”
 - albert einstein 



  1. These are wonderful thoughts about something I know sooooo well!!! Thank you for sharing! It was just what I needed today. Or is it what I need EVERY day? Hm....I could write a novel about my fears and how perfect everything could be without these little voices in my head ;)
    And I LOVE the quote and picture of Albert Einstein. It's so true. We should embrace our fears and just keep on moving. Easy said...

  2. I think that last quote by Albert Einstein says it's as simple as that (but that doesnt make it any easier I know).
    Get on that bike and just keep peddling. See where you end up, nothing to lose, just a new journey to look forward to.
    I hope you ride rough shod over those fears soon.

    Sending a hug.

    Jacky xox

  3. Joe, Excepting and even welcoming the fear is the first step, then like a breeze it lifts and leaves, as all emotions do once we stop resisiting, but you are right, never mistake excepting for wallowing :-). xoxo

  4. Joe,

    A perfect read for today!
    Thank you!

  5. Ahhh.... lots to think about there....I just started accupuncture to help me on my journey out of the rut. It is amzingly helpful! I am focusing on that one step at a time idea - just keep moving and trusting that you are where you are meant to be. And I am learning that you control your thoughts and can flip them any way you like. Scary or challenging or exciting or ? I hear you, you are not alone, a big hug to you!

  6. i've been stuck. i think you just have to feel the stuckness until you are tired enough of being stuck to unstick yourself. this isn't poetic like all of your words... you phrase things so nicely. but for me its the secret.... that and being present.... even in the mud. just be the best you can be in any given moment. the more you practice the easier it becomes. hugs to you...
    i've had my moments or i wouldn't comment.

  7. Love this "classic" Joe writing! once again speaking to us all in your poignant way. and Nance liked your comment too, good to see you back commenting here and there, always enjoy.
    h. Salo

  8. I've just written "Washing the lion" and put it where I'll see it daily while working. Thank you
    for this visual reminder to what is the focus!

  9. yes. i have a print out of this photo on my fridge to remind me on a daily basis. wonder if i ought to drop one in my i.d. badge sleeve at work??

  10. If you would like practice, I could send you one of our "lions" . If you can tackle her, you can tackle anything! LOL She's all claws and teeth, but can be handled by the right purrrson>^..^< You just have to be the lion whisperer:)

  11. Oh yes forgot to say, we will have to see if we "March" in like a LION or a lamb tomorrow.

  12. Joe, It is time to roar!!!

  13. very thought provoking post, sending you lots of twinkling good wishes and trusting you will find the right path, you are indeed a very thoughtul chap, and always inspiring. I am loving that lion photo btw, classic!