Lessons in The Goat: Part 3 – Facing Fears and Artistic Collaboration

Check out Lessons in The Goat: Part 1

Check out Lessons in The Goat: Part 2

Part 3 – Facing Fears and Artistic Collaboration

There are two things I want to discuss this week on our journey in The Goat. The first is the fear that must be overcome if one is to work well with others. The second is to share the decided structure of our collaborative daily meditation book, which combines photographic beauty with wisdom.

Canyonlands National Park, UT

Let me begin with the fact that Bob and I are on a road trip across western America, where the Rocky Mountains reign. Therefore, it is nearly impossible to avoid one of my greatest fears: winding mountain roads with sheer drops and very low to no railings. My phobic response to these roads leaves me at the least very tense and whimpering. Occasionally, the stress brings on a good cleansing sob session. I’m not joking. The fear is real. But I am learning to surrender and accept the fear.

Thankfully, Bob drives really well. And I have made the decision to travel where I have not yet been despite this fear. Without courage, not a whole lot happens.

Collaborating with another artist on a joint project also requires courage – that ingredient necessary for any scary venture.

What if I hate his ideas? Can he take my brutal honesty?  Will we have a falling out? What if he hates my ideas? Will I feel worthless, angry, too proud to continue? What if I get stuck on an approach that goes unsupported? Can I manage not getting my way? What if his motivation wanes; then what? Aaahhh! There are a lot of potential rifts here.

Yet, I imagine how much I will learn.

I also imagine building our bond when I remain fluid and brave. Collaboration not only requires surrender, but it also requires a heavy dose of confidence. The first time I gave Bob three sample approaches for potential book passages, I felt embarrassed. It was only a first draft; my vulnerability was palpable. Then he suggested we weave all three approaches into every passage. Now, that was an unexpected win! Bob further admitted to balking at his own risks with the written word.  We speculated about him sharing some of his own content for the book. I fully supported that notion. What fun to cast ourselves out there together! This isn’t Thelma and Louise, but hey.

Thus far, we courageously agreed on these details, but remember, we are evolving, so it is subject to change:
  • We will have 365 entries with orderly dates assigned.
  • In keeping with our outdoor imagery and a nature-focused lifestyle, we will rotate the four natural elements every four days as a guide for the day’s general vibe – earth, air, fire, and water. More on that later.
  • We will share one photograph with each entry, a one-page photo with its opposite page of written content, a meditative thought of approximately 250 words.
  • We will combine personal experience with some philosophical wisdom, and inspire potential action for each day.
  • The topics include a full range of universal themes about the human experience, and promote general wellness for our readers.
  • We will at no time present ourselves as experts in fields where we do not hold expertise, but we may quote the experts if it seems fitting.
  • We hope to include some humorous, light, and sometimes absurd quotes to balance levity with sincerity.

There is something noble in facing one’s fears, in finding the strength to forge ahead, knowing it could all go south. Things do tend to work out. That’s a little bit of wisdom right there.

See you next Friday for Part 4!

2 comments on “Lessons in The Goat: Part 3 – Facing Fears and Artistic Collaboration

Donna says:

I love this and hope you publish your journal. I look forward to the. Next “chapter”. Oh, congratulations on overcoming false evidence appearing real. Godspeed.

Molly says:

“Without courage, not a whole lot happens.”
You should make T-shirts and sell this.

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