This piece is personal and so it is necessarily brief and succinct. It is extremely gratifying to witness the support that The Progressive Express has received in the short time that it has been up. For those of you who found your way to this space after reading my work on my first blog The Progressive Pugilist I have a special level of appreciation.
The cryptic message that you saw the last time you attempted to visit TPP “What We Don’t Appreciate We Lose” was posted by my former friend (and blog administrator) in that venture as her final protest against my decision to go in a different direction. The good news is the new direction was just what the doctor ordered- and I’m still me regardless of the stage I’m performing on.
That direction turned out to be starting a brand new blog as my prior work was largely lost in the raging fire of that failed partnership. She just burned it down and I had no fire insurance so I had to build from the ground up. But that is life. You learn your lessons and move on. And in this case, you move on and build on the work you have done in the past- regardless of how things turned out. The fact that many of you found your way back is proof of the wisdom of that perspective.
I’ll share with you a few of the lessons that I learned through the experience of watching my work destroyed and the joy of rebuilding anew. Here are my takeaways from that process and I hope they can help you somewhere along your journey:
#1- People are down for you- until they aren’t. You have to be ready for people to flip on you like IHOP the minute they can see that they are not getting what they want from you. Sometimes they are bad people at their core and sometimes they are not. What is certain is that it is a natural human reflex to flip and only exceptional people can resist the temptation to act a clown when you are not doing for them what they want you to do.
#2- People will use the power that you give them- always. The good news is that some people use the power that you give them for good and they can ride that out through thick and thin. The bad news is that most people will act on the natural reflex to use the power that you have given them against you when (wait for it) they are not getting what they want. The level of damage they can do to you is indexed directly to the level of power you vested in them. It’s real and frankly I’m a little disappointed that it took me more than 4 decades to get my arms around that reality. But the death and resurrection of The Progressive Pugilist taught me that. But that is the lesson that literally birthed The Progressive Express.
#3- Your passion can propel you or imprison you- so you have to choose which. The greatest success that I had during the Progressive Pugilist period was during the time of my greatest disappointment. At the moment in my life when I felt the most frustration I ever felt, I wrote the piece that finally broke through to the world- literally. That one piece raised my visiting readership by a factor of a thousand and literally covered the globe. So my work propelled me through a horrible time.
But on the other hand, there were times when my passion became obsession. And an obsession left unchecked can begin to cannibalize your life. For a time, all I could think about or see was the blog- and the beautiful life around me had started moving along without me. So when I began anew it was with the understanding that if I can’t live a balanced life and enjoy the work I do on this blog then I will have to adjust. I decided that when I picked up again, I was bringing that beautiful life right along with me. And so far, so good my friends.
And since I promised brevity, I’m shutting it down right there- ending with a simple thank you for hanging with me and a promise that The Progressive Express is here to stay. Your support has validated this project and this experience and I will do my level best to honor that support. As always I wish you Peace Love & Soul.