DRMacIver's Notebook

The Possibility and the Actuality of Change

The Possibility and the Actuality of Change

(A very short post, because I've been struggling to maintain the daily writing habit recently and it's useful to remind myself that this is possible)

From A Little Book on the Human Shadow by Robert Bly, page 77:

Wallace Stevens was not willing to change his way of life, despite all the gifts he received, and all the advice he read in his own poems.

This is, I think, a useful reminder to anyone who wants to change their life, but it's especially a useful reminder to me and others who have a perhaps overly intellectual approach to the problem. I'm building a practice of change on a huge amount of reading and writing, which can lead to the trap of confusing the knowledge of how to change with the change itself.

Much of what I write is, if I do say so myself, very good advice to how to change and improve your life (especially if your problems look like mine). I'm not always that great at following it - I'm no Wallace Stevens (though I do not know if Bly's criticisms of him are at all fair) - I do listen to my own advice, and I do follow it, but perhaps not as consistently as I might.

Knowing how and what to change is important - vital even - but change has to be grounded in a willingness to change, and to then do the work of changing.