Three

Mental Health Jun 21, 2018

Today I want to talk about the number three. Don't worry, I'm not going to go all Sesame Street on you, but I may get a little new agey.

I try as much as possible to be a sceptic in all things, and for the most part I succeed. The number three is something that I got from numerology. A few years back my housemate was quite into it and convinced me to do an online numerology reading. What came out was that my numerology number is three.

Threes are creative. Threes are doers. They (we?) are change bringers. This is how I want to see myself.

I'm very good at taking the spark of an idea and developing it into a plan. I have many notebooks full of ideas and plans, and yet very few of those things ever materialised, and those that did are most commonly far from finished. My plans usually lead to me acquiring any tools I might need to get something going, and then it all mostly sits around my flat gathering dust.

Even ignoring the thing I execute best which is writing software, I have done initial work on projects involving electronics, photography, videography, DIY, and much more. I've started writing several books, and in my last post I mentioned the numerous blogs I've started over the past couple of decades.

I think it all comes from a deep desire to be creative. I yearn to create something great, something that other people think is great. I think this is a basic human need and I have no idea whether the need I feel is any different to what other people experience, but all told I find it incredibly frustrating to seemingly be incapable of following through. That's one of the reasons keeping this blog up is quite important to me. I see daily blogging as something that really shouldn't be that hard to maintain!

In my professional life I've identified my strengths quite clearly. I excel at taking a problem and designing a solution. I'm then pretty good at shepherding that solution through an implementation phase so long as I'm not doing all of the implementation. When it's left completely up to me to actually build something I can be a master procrastinator. As an aside what I find particularly odd is that once I get going on something I rarely want to stop, and if I could go without eating, sleeping and pooping I could probably be a very valuable addition to most enterprises.

As a life skill procrastination is not massively useful. I've found it to be advantageous when it comes to preventing me from making certain classes of mistakes in life, but generally speaking not being able to actually get things done does more harm than good. I put is on a par with laziness in that being excessively lazy can often lead to breakthroughs in alternative ways to achieve a goal, while also dropping overall prouctivity to near zero.

Back to my three.

Shortly after doing that reading online I found myself wanting to find something with the number three on it that I could carry around as a reminder that, whether a coincidence or not, the universe "believes" in my creativity. Daft, right? I ended up getting a small, circular disc stamped with the number and attached to a chain. I wore this around my neck for several years without taking it off.

I have no clue whether it made any noticeable difference to my life, I just remember playing with it when caught up in my own thoughts (breaking the chain several times), and occasionally catching myself rubbing it gently when I returned to being consiously present in that moment. Clearly it meant something to me, whether there's any truth to numerology or not. I gave it my own meaning and I took comfort in it.

At some point I stopped wearing it. I think it was around the time my best friend was diagnosed with leukaemia. I stopped doing many things that brought me joy and happiness that day.

Why am I bringing this up now? Partly because my ramblings about blogs in my last post got me thinking about it, and partly because I've recently found the chain again and have started wearing it. As usual I have no idea whether it's actually having an affect on my but once more I find it a comfortable, constant reminder that something out there, whether the universe or coincidence, also sees a creative soul deep within my trying to get out.

I hope to share some of that here in the coming days, months and years.

TIL: When the dam of constipation breaks... you'd better be ready!

Stuart Dallas

A mostly harmless human. Software Engineer by trade, prolific procrastinator by vocation, creator by heart. When procrastinating he is excessively productive with everything but.