These bruises on my wrists are from the effort
Monumental, like what I made for you
Or of you, which may be more accurate
To move and lift, just me alone
It was really hard, you know
And fairly awkward in more ways than one
To haul such a thing into my living room
After taking so much time to assemble
A piece so bright and intricate
Freshly bleached and smooth to touch
Finally, somewhere to rest my feet
While I remember you, of course
Although, it is rather uncomfortable…
Perhaps I should have saved some flesh
With which I could cushion my poor ankles
Which are now propped up and aching,
On the unforgiving surface of my new coffee table.
Getting Out There - A Manual
To get out there, it's recommended to have a map. Out there is expansive and infinite in possibilities. Out there has no walls or limitations, but the roads are wide and the signs are hard to read. The conditions can be unforgiving, but they could also be lovely. See, the trees could be blooming, but you could have terrible allergies.
To get out there, it's advised to have a look in. Should you be aware of any allergies?
To get out there, it's important to first determine where you are. Look around the room - what kind of place is it? Does it have anything you can take with you? Gazing out the window can help as well, just remember that you can't see the whole world from your window. Then, you need to make a list. Pick up the notebook from that table - yes, that one - and title it: "Where I'm Going".
To get out there, it's imperative that you establish a detailed record. Your first entry will be a list. This list should cover where you are, what you're taking, and why you're leaving. But be prepared, there are other lists you have yet to make. Out there has something for everyone, and that's a serious promise. There is no shortage of place, yet the question is still "where?".
To get out there, it's critical to rule out where not. Out there is full of 'yes', so it's up to you to determine what's a 'no'. A good list starts with broad categories: North, South, East, West… Plateau, Mountain, Valley, Plain. Starting broad makes it easier to keep track of the smaller subcategories within. Which, by the way, you should be filling out to the best of your knowledge. And a list can be anything. It can be about people and things as much as it can be about places. A list can also be a test. Answer the easiest questions first, and return to the difficult ones later. Hopefully you have a blue or black pen on hand, because you'll be crossing out any destinations that just aren't for you. They can be as general as "North" or as specific as "my ex's house" - it all depends on where you are and what your list is about. Before proceeding to the next step, cross out anywhere that you definitely don’t want to go.
To get out there, it's encouraged to use reason. You probably have a few different directions left on your list, so you've started narrowing down your where. But to solidify your where, you must list out your why-s. You probably know where this is going - yes, rewrite your destinations on a new page with plenty of free space. A clear notebook reflects a clear mind, and we are here to gain clarity after all. Each place should have a good amount of why-s. If you find that a place isn't inspiring many, worry not - next we detail our why-nots before we are free to move forward. After this, your list should have a healthy index of the why-s and why-nots of each potential destination. Now, how is that proportion looking? You guessed it - you'll be crossing out anything with more why-nots than why-s. And with that, you are free to… begin the next list!
To get out there, it's helpful to calculate your routes. Turn to a new spread - on the left side, write out your list of destinations in order from closest to furthest. And if you have no sense of proximity, write them in whichever order you think of them. We often know more than we initially think we do. Now, you can create your map. As with any map, you start with a small circle labelled "you are here". Your destinations become other small circles, peppering your paper until you can decide: "Where I'm Going… First".
To get out there, you should know where you're going, where you're not going, and why. To get out there, you should know what's closest and what's furthest, but above all, you should know where you'd like to start. To get out there, you should take your notebook, full of lessons, goals, and dreams, so you can elaborate and cross-out at will. How you get somewhere is entirely dependent on where that place is. And when you figure out where you'd like to go, getting out there is the easiest part of all.
And when you do get out there, make sure you keep this guide handy. No matter where you end up, you might find that you're once again in need of a map.