Acting in the Face of Disenchantment

Some colleagues and I were on a call recently with a couple of my mentors, Jay Kubassek & John Jackson where we considered how to proceed in the face of disenchantment. The early romance and honeymoon period of any new endeavor is truly exhilarating, often times with stunning results, everything from conceiving of children to pulling together the resources needed for your next big project and/or the early stages of starting a business.

OK, the baby is born. You have the project resources on hand. You almost have the new set of skills required to apply to your project under your belt. Suddenly you find yourself mired in the daily drudgery, desperately missing the enchantment of the honeymoon period. Wondering if you’d made a tragic mistake. Welcome to disenchantment.

While disenchantment has been considered by many theologians and philosophers, for our purposes today, let us consider how to continue the work of the day in the face of disenchantment. I’m curious if a bit of judicious forgetfulness might be of help here. While maintaining a laser focus on the source of your enchantment, judiciously forgetting the dreariness of some of the tasks, even while doing them, would seem of use. Admittedly this is easier to do with the more mindless tasks of one’s day. Cleaning out various email boxes requires little actual thought, thus is easily forgettable. Canvasses need stretching and priming. The project plan needs to be sketched out. Scheduling needs to be worked out. All of this, while necessary, is imminently forgettable upon completion with little need for any emotional investment. Now focus on your source of enchantment. The successful piece, the successful business, the happy/healthy child, the happy/healthy you.

The tedium of disenchantment can drown even the most invigorating enchantment. Might some of the more involved tasks be done with a minimum of emotional engagement and energy, thus enabling you to focus your emotional life on your enchantment? Might they be broken into smaller chunks, the completion of each small chunk wildly celebrated? Can some of them be delegated? In the spirit of someone else’s disenchanting administrivia might be more interesting than your own, perhaps you can swap task lists. The added benefit here is that you both end up signing up for each other’s projects. Might the tasks be approached from a quasi meditative, non-judgmental state. The possibility with this approach is finishing the day with a sense of renewal and accomplishment.

I would love to hear your thoughts on acting in the face of disenchantment. Would also love to hear what amazing things you were able to accomplish, just after that scary moment when you thought about giving up, but instead chose to re-focus on your source of enchantment and do the chores necessary to get you to the next step.


2 comments so far

  1. Dakota Dee on

    This “social media” stuff leaves me wary, however, at times it also creates a sort of bonding of sympatico souls — and it’s always nice to know there are others facing “disenchantment” with their paths in life.

    Many of us wonder, I’m sure, whether we’re on the right “destined” path of passion. I do — all the time. And I have multiple “passions” which I tend to juggle when one particular path of passion remains blocked & “disenchantment” sets in. Doesn’t mean I give up on it. I never give up on anything (only devious, negative people in my life)! Projects and passion? Never. But the “juggling” — or “active progression” — helps overcome disenchantment. A new moon with all its new karmic energy helps, too.

    As for the boredom/disenchantment that sets in when whatever “task” has got to be done, but no longer creates the same energy of excitement? One foot in front of the other until you reach the goal — and then REWARD THE EFFORT!

    Sharing here an excerpt from another (she must be Lakota)

    “I am the bird that is calling you
    to learn how to keep your sails up in the winds of Great Spirit”

    “The only true ground is emptiness
    so let us pave life with laughter
    born of invincible trust in the divine love
    that vigilantly accompanies us
    through this world of illusion”
    Aryz Eden Sky

    Food for thought . . .
    Dakota Dee

    • ttaylorblog on

      Thanks for your comment Dakota. I can appreciate your wariness of social media. One of my favorite things about it is hearing/reading what everyone is up to & thinking about. If I’m stuck for inspiration on new ideas or generating momentum, I find well managed social media a great help. I enjoy the value in the “bonding of sympatico souls” and often times find it useful.

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