Time to check myself before I wreck myself.
One of my mentors picked me up on my US election fascination the other day.
And I realised that I’ve become a bit lost in the drama of it. I was getting obsessed with it. I was reading articles from here, there and everywhere at all hours of the night.
It became a puzzle I couldn’t crack. Because I read from both sides of the political fence, I was getting two incredibly different pictures of the election.
On Clinton’s side we had the righteous advance of history butting up against a buffoon who was willing to derail everything that is good just to fluff his own ego.
On Trump’s side we had the gun-slinger outsider on a charge to #draintheswamp.
Which picture of reality you got depended on which media channel you were tuned into. I think media used to be more generalist. Now, in the age of social media algorithms and internet publishing, people find the media that speaks to them.
You see the picture you want to see. The truth is what you expected it to be in the first place.
But if you’re interested in the game more than the result, like I am, then you just get mixed messages. And I was caught like a deer in the headlights.
I had these two, incredible, emotionally-charged and vivid pictures of reality. And they were totally different. They couldn’t be more different. So where was the truth?
My head started swimming trying to triangulate some granule of truth out of these bedazzled images. It felt so close, like at the end of my fingertips.
But I got nothing.
And now that I step back a bit, I realise that I bought into the game. Because while Trump and Clinton are presenting two totally different options, there is a single, common, foundational idea.
And that idea is that one leader will be better than another. One leader will be good for America and good for the world, and the other will not.
This is not the case. Fundamentally, I think it misrepresents how time and reality work.
(Ok, I’m going to mess with your head a bit now. If you have some crystals now is a good time to stick them down your pants and fill any holes in your aura.)
Elections sell us a story. Over and over again until we believe it. And this US election is one of the most energised examples of recent times.
The story goes that history is approaching a juncture – a pivotal turning point. After Tuesday US time, we will either find ourselves in the Trump future or the Clinton future.
In most people’s minds, one future is significantly better than another. The other is actually a disaster. (And arguments over Trump and Clinton are really about differing visions for the future.)
But this idea that there are two, and only two, futures available to us is wrong. Dead wrong.
In fact, it’s one of the most limiting beliefs I can imagine.
From any given point in time, there are infinite futures available to us. I could be rich/poor/happy/wise in either the Trump or the Clinton future. I could be in both. I could be in neither.
The swing factor is me. It’s not Trump, it’s not Clinton. It’s me. I choose my own future. I create it. My trajectory from this moment on is set by my own hand.
“But hang on Jon, stuff happens and you can’t change it.”
That’s true, but don’t worry about stuff. Don’t sweat the details. We get to choose our experiences, not the details.
(In fact, in my experience, focusing on the details really limits ourselves and/or the guiding hand of fate.)
Let’s say I want to be financially independent, and in my mind that means landing a particular job.
There an infinite number of ways to be financially independent. You don’t have to force it through the narrow channel of having this or that job.
(In my experience, the universe throws up solutions that are far more creative and intelligent than anything I could come up with. Why get in the way of that process?)
Likewise with Trump or Clinton. Maybe you believe that Clinton is the path to global peace and good times. But why are you getting all fussy with the details? Maybe what the world needs is one more megalomaniac to show us what not to do…
Maybe Trump loses and the 50% of Americans who voted for him get angry. And those Americans have the guns…
(This election is going to be so, so interesting.)
My point is, don’t kid yourself that you know the path to the future you want. Given your intelligence (and I say this knowing that you’re also human) it’s arrogant to the point of being funny.
If you want to live in a peaceful, harmonious world, where all the people of the earth join hands and sing lovely songs together, that’s what you focus on.
Focus on the felt experience and call it in. Put your energy and attention there, and that sets the trajectory of your own soul’s experience.
And if everyone focused on that, if we chose it collectively, then that would shape the collective experience.
The great sausage sizzle of human fellowship would be realised.
And it just wouldn’t matter who America chose as President.
So don’t buy into it. Don’t buy into the idea that elections create junctures in history. They don’t.
The future is always a choice.
How are you keeping your head above it all?