by Anne Marie Gazzolo
The first time we meet Bilbo he is in a rut. He has long abandoned his previous dreams of adventure for the safety of a mundane life. His Baggins side has overcome his Tookish bent for excitement. But after Gandalf and the dwarves upset his ordered life, his Tookish side gains more control. He begins to live, not merely to exist.
Are you in a rut too? Has your Baggins side taken over, but you have a Took inside that is dying to express itself? Do you realize that your dreams have risen in you because you are just as “chosen and selected,” as Gandalf says of Bilbo? Without abandoning your true responsibilities, what steps can you take to get out of your rut and embrace your dreams? Before you think that you do not have the time, money, energy, or whatever, to bring your life to life, let me tell you do. There are so many ways you can find time, and your energy level will rise as you pursue your passions and not just a paycheck. Do not pay attention to any internal or external critic that says you cannot do what you always wanted to. These voices come from what Steven Pressfield calls Resistance, a malevolent force that will do anything it takes to stop you. Read or listen to his marvelous books, The War of Art, Do the Work, and Turning Pro, in order to help you recognize and defeat this force against you. There are myriad weapons at its disposal. Many of its favorites may be already well known to you: fear of change and risk, procrastination, the self-delusion that ‘Oh, I’ll just look at Facebook/Twitter/whatever for a couple minutes’, phones that have you jumping to pay immediate attention to each ding that announces a new piece of spam has arrived, and voices that say ‘Get real! You can’t possibly be thinking you are or ever will be good enough/smart enough/rich enough to do that!’