Sunday, November 09, 2008

DIARY 80 - Restless Unreason

I've had a number of weeks, where I've pretty much slept through the night with no breaks. This week unsatisfactory sleep, has made something of an unpleasant, and unwelcome return. Sunday night it was broken into by external circumstance, the students in the next flat, yet again, playing loud dance music, after 12.30 at night. I got up annoyed, banged on their door, and said 'come on guys', the volume subsequently dropped. Since then my nights have had an increasingly restless character, with much physical tumbling and sheet tugging with David ,accompanied by matching mental states. I don't know about you, but I don't find the middle of the night a time for constructive thinking, otherwise I'd be making more use of this unexpected bonus wouldn't I. Things do not get clearer, so I see my way ahead gloriously illuminated. Instead my mind searches for things it can obsessively churn over, be narked or get into a state of self-righteousness about. Trying to mentally shift to contemplating something with a more positive purpose or emphasis is difficult, as the slipperiness of negativity will gradually sour milk, and turn cider into vinegar.

Still, outside the hopelessness of these nocturnal musings, I don't understand why I am so restless and unsettled, as in myself I feel OK. What is going on in the terrain of my subconsciousness? I've thought, perhaps its the beneficial effects of my retreat wearing off, or some accumulation of tension after a fortnight back at work, or past associations with being awoken suddenly in the night - who knows. Not that work has been much of a strain, in fact it's been uncharacteristically quiet for the time of year. The current economic climate obviously is a concern. I may be being foolishly optimistic, but the thought of a recession seems not to be alarming me. There has been so much unhelpful, hyped up economic speculation and hysterical predictions going on - you'd think we were all doomed. If we are in recession, we'll know soon enough, how long, or how deep will become clear soon enough, if its the end of the dominance of western global capitalism, we'll know soon enough. If we must be concerned about anything then let it be climate change. Though we ordinary folk have about as much effective control over this as we do over the credit crunch - a moderate amount of - Zilch!

, like any other company, is planning for the worst, trying to be leaner and keener as a business, and doing everything it can to keep its turnover up. I don't for some reason feel worried about its survival. If it were to fold, that would be a shame, but its not the end of life as we know it. A business like everything else is an impermanent phenomena. I've experienced at least four recessions, including the deep one in the mid seventies, and been made redundant twice. So I know they're not pleasant. These will be difficult times for everyone, but the economy has grown out of proportion, you only have to look at the average house price to see that. Things need bringing back down to terra-firma. The Queen, for once, said something perspicacious this week, when on a visit to the London School of Economics, she said: 'If these things were so large, how come everyone missed them?' Indeed your Majesty- how come? I would say banks and governments became so focused on stimulating exponential growth at any cost, they abandoned sensible precautions and fiscal rectitude. Instead we were encouraged to believe it was possible to have everything we wanted, to live beyond our means without consequence. You want a house, a car, a swimming pool, a face lift - here, have the dosh now, though you and your offspring will be paying for it, for the rest of your lives. Unfortunately those same folk are now going to be bearing the brunt of the financial and social suffering that may result - no one will be bailing them out in quite the same way as failed banks or governments.

Towards the end of the week, after many fractured nights of sleep, I was beginning to feel mentally a bit pooped. Communication by me, with my team, on Friday, proved a tad fraught with sensitivity and reactivity. Though I did have a brief moment of insight - when I have enough emotionally on my plate, I find it hard to listen, or cope well hearing other peoples emotiveness. I start to feel weighed down and oppressed whilst I'm listening - internally there can be a restlessness, and sometimes a dismissive response can arise. Fortunately, I don't voice this response, but it can make my communication clumsier, as I try skilfully to work my way around this internal obstacle of frustration. I can become downhearted at the crude nature of some of my imperfections, and the ineptness of my communication skills. Oh well, more to practice, more work in progress.

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