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Movement junkies

By August 17, 2010How To, Myth or Reality

I’m a card-carrying member of the RSSC (Radio Station Switching Club). It’s a disease. Like finger tourettes. Or something.

It’s car-specific. I’m either driving or riding in the passenger seat and I Constantly, Continually and Compulsively switch from radio station to radio station. These being the 3C’s of the RSSC.

If I happen upon a song I like, I stick with it for a little bit. But after about 30 seconds, I get that feeling again and I have to swing through the other stations–even if just lightening-quick, before I land back where I was.

Sometimes, to my detriment, I leave a perfectly good song to swing through many, many perfectly bad songs. And by the time I get back to the perfectly good song, it’s over and I’ve missed it. But, at least I tried. At least I made sure there was nothing better. See how this works?

The feeling can only be described as the Darwinian itch to, wait for it, see if there’s something else out there that would behoove me more.


Did I say that it was car-specific? Of course it isn’t. Nor does it have anything to do with music.

I’m a movement junkie.

I sat on a bus to NYC a month or so ago next to a lovely lady who unabashedly watched me work for awhile. She stared, goggle-eyed. And then, finally, remarked on my multi-tasking abilities, and my speed.

“I have to go this fast,” I told her. “Otherwise, I’ll fall asleep. Or run off to the circus.”

So…it’s a good thing for a freelancer juggling a zillion writing and web projects along with the chaos of social media. But, there’s another place where it gets a little sticky.

By definition, being a movement junkie means that you have a hard time sitting still, just being…with what is. Metaphysically, emotionally, cognitively. I’m practically the anti-Buddha.

  • Head hurts? Drop something on your foot!
  • Feeling empty? Call an old boyfriend and open up a can of worms, crap, whoopass.
  • Tired? Make a list of all the things you have to do.
  • Totally content and at peace? No problem, we’ll find something that itches or needs to be dealt with.

Wherever you might be, whatever you might be feeling? No worries. The movement junkie will find a way to something else.

Some people might see this as a negative. There’s agitation, there’s dissatisfaction, there’s an endless search. Some days, even I see it as a negative. I just want to be. For once, I don’t want to feel compelled to do.

Truth be told, it’s a very uncomfortable feeling to not be able to just sit and observe your state without doing everything you can to scramble out of it—primarily because it feels so damn uncomfortable to just sit in the feeling in the first place. Which is, duh, why we do everything we can to hop out. Immediately, if not sooner.

It doesn’t matter if the hopping out lands you somewhere worse. Victory is yours because you aren’t where you were. Again, see how this works?

But. (and that’s a big, bold but) There’s also, artistry, determination, energy, thrill. Change, growth, development, adventure, newness, opportunity. Granted, some of those words are rather vanilla and certainly overplayed. Yet, they’re what live in this compulsion. They’re what push the movement junkie on.

They’re what we find, quite frequently, when we jump to a different station.

Join the discussion 10 Comments

  • Ron Miller says:

    Please remind me never ever to take a road trip with you. LOL.

    You know I love you.


  • Edgy Mama says:

    Oh holy hell. Me too. Not the radio thing so much. But the movement/do/think thing. Oh yeah.

  • Andi says:

    Agh, I am so the opposite, of course I can multi-task, I am incredibly good at it, but I also love to sit still and do nothing!

  • I think that’s called ADD these days. Eat extra Tryptophan more often and less caffeine. :P

  • There’s also something to listening to a song on the radio that can be exciting. If you have it on a CD or a playlist, it’s so much easier to get bored of it. Finding it by chance on the radio makes it instantly more fun and listen-worthy. Wonder how this applies to everything else, as well…

  • Alisa Bowman says:

    It’s weird, I’m a total movement junkie with the car radio, too. I’ve even broken scan buttons just by pressing them too much. But not so much in life. I mean–kinda yes, of course. But not like with the radio. Now. Hum. What does that say about me? Deep.

  • Julie –
    Oh man, this is SO me.
    My six year-old daughter and I just had a big heart-to-heart last night after I apologized her for being so rushed all the time. My little girl burst into tears and through sobs said, “Everything’s too fast.” OMG – talk about breaking my heart!

    As a single mom who runs her own business, I’m constantly in motion – whether I’m physically running from laptop to laundry or hopping frenetically between apps – email, twitter, email, facebook, Word, Excel, Reader, email … It’s like I think if I can be everywhere at once, I’ll be able to get more done & finally put my feet up for a minute.

    But, it only makes me a little more tired and a lot more “jangly.” All that bouncing leaves me tense and vibrating … like a cartoon character who has been bounced like a super ball.

    Still … you’re right … there is a certain adreneline rush that can feel great. When everything is in sync and the bouncing feels more like dancing – one thing flowing into the next and so on… THAT’s a GOOD place to be.

    Movement junkies unite! (So we can talk each other in off the ledge, and share in the secret thrill of being everywhere at once.)

  • Joseph Ruiz says:

    I am exhausted. Think I need a nap! Glad you don’t eat dinner this way ;-)

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