I Had a Dream

"Are you blind?" she screamed, "World War III has started and you're acting as if everything's just peachy"!, referring of course to the current state of the world. The subject in my dream several nights ago I am very close to in real life. I recall replying something to the effect that "I can understand why you think this, but the world was not that great a place *before* 9/11 and the terrorist attacks have only served as the catalyst for the positive, spiritual changes the world needed to make anyway". Something in reality I have said to many people. However, she rebutted, and this is verbatim: "You had better wake up and smell the anthrax!" I intensely dislike nightmares, and especially those that wake you up with a jolt like this did, but the surreal conversation served as my own catalyst to change how I have been "existing" since September 11. I'll explain in a moment. You may be having trouble sleeping or having dreams, or worse, nightmares related to the terrorist attacks and the current state of the world. We are being told by experts that this is perfectly normal considering the scale of the senseless slaughter, the onslaught of biological attacks and continual talk of more threats, even nuclear, and the overall 'crisis coverage' bombardment in our lives day in and day out. I certainly believe them. If you weren't concerned about everything that is going on right now, including your own safety, you'd have to be pretty insensitive! However, I believe the biggest enemy we face right now is our personal preoccupation with these world events, and, the level of "shutdown" we've allowed into our lives as a result. Just look around at what's happening, or better yet, not happening. Travellers and vacationers aren't flying and the airlines and tourist industries are in deep financial trouble. People are avoiding public places and countless major events have been postponed or cancelled. You could probably hurl a good sized snowball through your local restaurants and not hit a patron. The stock market has plummeted and businesses large and small are beginning to fall by the wayside in droves. People just aren't doing what they normally do and that includes spending money enjoying themselves. Me? I readily admit that too many people have been in my miserable midst to hear me grumble in disgust about how slow my Internet sales have been. Not like me at all. But come to think of it, I haven't bought a single thing on the Internet since September 11! Nor in any department store. I haven't hopped on an airplane let alone ventured out to a restaurant. I haven't attended the theatre or been to a sporting event either. I've been sitting in my office and running to the nearest television for 5 weeks now, stuck in this fog, frozen, like too many people! So how could I then be expecting people to spend money on MY products when I wasn't buying theirs? Worse, how come I was not enjoying my life like I normally would? Am I not part of the problem? See, we all have been attacked by these terrorist thugs. In my case, I let them change not only my thinking process but the patterns in MY life! I just *had* to follow every breaking story, see every related interview, stay on top of every detail of the 'war on terrorism' and otherwise remain a slave to the chaos these demons created. I was getting my routine work done but that was all. I had NOT been my progressive, creative and otherwise normal self since September 11. Partial victory, Osama! For some reason though, this twisted dream made me realize that I had the option NOT to be a victim and play into the blood stained hands of these devils on earth. So I made some decisions. I am no longer staying tuned to the play-by-play of the War on Terrorism. I'm going to do something fun with my family this weekend and every weekend thereafter. And, I AM back to work on a new project that was "inspired" by the great tragedy of September 11. And boy does it feel great! I am now getting on with business and my life. Something so many of us have to do a much better job of. When you really think about it, being all-consumed by the events of the recent future only plays into the hands of the thugs that are trying to destroy all that is good in this world. Psychological terrorism is potent and an awfully easy infection to catch but the good news is you're a decision or two away from a cure! Yes, we are in a war. A war of good versus evil. Right against wrong. Love against hate. World War III? No way! We all know who's going to win this thing and it's just a matter of time. The same time we can be putting to use in ways that make *us* contribute to the coming victory! Allowing the fear that the terrorists have created to dominate our thinking, stop us from living our lives normally and moving forward in our businesses and careers is in reality hoisting the white flag to the evil we are fighting! We owe it to ourselves, our families, our businesses and our free nations to get back to normal in these unnormal times. Like, right now! May I suggest taking the family to your favorite restaurant and a movie this weekend? How about planning a well-deserved trip, even if by car and even if just a weekender? Doesn't a leisurely excursion to your local mall to treat yourself to something you've wanted for a long time sound good? And by all means, if you have been swimming in the same soup as I have for weeks now, make a decision to get back to work! I urge you to put an end to whatever level of shutdown you may still be in. Hopefully you were more enlightened than me, and dug out early. But if not, begin the process of "letting go" of those things you can't control and take possession of what you can - Your Life! I've started that process and I can't begin to explain the great sense of freedom I have. The same feeling I had before that terrible day none of us will ever forget.