Monday, January 19, 2015

Your Turn Challenge: Day 1 - Uprooted

Your Turn Challenge: Day 1. 

I'm blogging every day this week as a part of a challenge by author, marketer and thinker Seth Godin. The challenge is being led by Seth's colleague Winnie, and it coincides with his book Your Turn.

The suggested prompt for today is: Why are you doing the challenge?

Because I want to. Because I need to. Need to face my doubt, fears?, anxiety, and indecision over what to post and why and for whom. 

Well, enough about that. I came here to write, not to think about writing about why I'm writing. 

I love to write. I also like photography, and just bought a new camera. I went to Yosemite over New Year's with this new camera (a Canon Rebel SL1), and I had a complete blast out there meandering about and click. Click. Click. I never got very far on any hike because I would walk a few steps, then see something else I wanted to shoot, and pause my journey.  

I could share an album of a hundred or more of these photos. I really want to - some of them are, in my opinion, amazing shots. Later on I might, but right now I just want to post this one. This fallen, beautifully broken tree.

I think one image can be more powerful than 1,000 when it stands alone. If you can take the time to sit with it. Stare at it. Let it stare at you. 

When I go on Facebook, or look through slideshows, it's usually like that. I probably spend less than a second looking at any given picture before swiping or clicking to the next. Which is only fitting, because most pictures are taken in quick bursts of 3, 5, or 10. I have so many albums of thousands of pictures that I took, and when I looked at them, it was a chore. I had to speed through them. Take more pictures. Swipe through more pictures. 

What happens if every vacation or birthday party or hike you could only take one picture? What happens if you could only show one that you took? Which one would you show?
What if it were 10 pictures? I think I would be much more thoughtful about my selection. It would probably be easy to pass on most opportunities. Naw, this shot's not worth it. 

My point is that there's so much going on all the time, that it feels weird to sit with one thing for too long. Even when it's not a picture, but a person. It can feel unsettling to be still and present, just talking. Or even be with him or her silently. No phones or TV usually. Just conversation. It takes some getting used to.

So whether you have a person across from you, or some photograph, try focusing on that one thing. Be still. Take your time. Enjoy the scenery on the trail. 

I would have missed this uprooted, craggly, yet majestic tree if I had been more set on reaching the destination, wherever that was. I'm not sure if anyone else noticed or appreciated it, but I did.  

What I'm starting to learn in life is that there's nothing around that bend in the trail - everything you need is right in front of you. 

#yourturn #yourturnchallenge #day1 

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