I know that Joss Whedon is a writer of screenplays because I read about him in Vanity Fair, but I don’t believe I have ever seen anything he wrote. I did however see this quote on Pinterest some weeks ago and decided I liked him very much, despite my limited knowledge of his work. I like what he says here, a lot. STEP 16 is important because it, at least to my mind, differentiates being “busy” from being active. By this I mean that actively participating in life, DOING something, is not at all the same as being busy, or appearing to be busy, or creating an illusion to both yourself and to others that you are doing something, because don’t we all honestly know at least one person who always seems like they are busy, in a rush, overwhelmed with too many tasks and not enough time, but nothing ever really gets done? Rush-rush-rush, busy-busy-busy, but the result is a whole lot of nothing completed…a task from start to finish, beginning to end, no matter how long it takes, is a gratifying experience, regardless of what the experience is.
I think STEP 16 just wants to lead us in a direction towards creativity, or maybe domesticity, or perhaps just a reminder that before there were iPads and televisions there were books to read and candles to make and food to jar and rows to hoe and we humans HAD to be actively DOING things to survive. Now we live in a world where we can sit on the sofa and order food that gets delivered to our door, and our Visa in on file so we don’t even have to stand up to pay the driver, and some of us can earn money by sitting on our bottoms and tapping keys on our computers to draw a paycheck, and we don’t have to DO to survive. Perhaps STEP 16 is an invitation to go backwards, a little bit old-fashioned perhaps, to a time when we HAD to DO things so that we could live, and maybe some of us would be better off if we did more of these things, no matter what they might be.
I find I am stimulated greatly when I am around creative people. I feed off of their energy, whether they are people who are good cooks, or good musicians, or good artists, or good hostesses, or good talkers, heck, I even inspire myself sometimes when I’m in organizing mode, or cleaning mode; emptying out a closet and refolding everything brings me just as much pleasure as preparing a complex recipe after a trip to the supermarket. I feel good, better, when I feel like I’ve DONE something. It’s not “what” gets done, a task brought to fruition, starting something and finishing it, but that something gets done at all. So…in joyful celebration of STEP 16, MAKE something…make time, make a date, make a snack, make music, make plans, make a craft, make a pie, make love, make a list, make a bed, make a garden, make dinner, make breakfast, make friends, make memories…but just DO something.