We tend to see what we’re looking for, so if you hear the name for something, you start seeing it everywhere, and your eyes get trained to see that particular thing, while you miss everything else. (That’s why Paul Valery said that real seeing “is forgetting the name of the thing one sees.”)
It seems to me that the reason that so many of us feel like we’re languishing is that we are trying to flourish in terrible conditions. It is spring outside — or the “unlocking” season — but it is still “Winter in America,” and, as any gardener knows, if you try to wake a plant out of dormancy too soon, it will wither, and maybe die.
there’s a line that says Michelangelo realized that, while dealing with a bunch of lawsuits and Pope Adrian and such, he’d been so stressed he hadn’t picked up a chisel in four years. Because he spent the entire time just dealing with the lawsuit. (Anyone feeling guilty about being overwhelmed by stress this year, you’re not alone!)