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Rachel Baum

A love note to David Bowie

Published about 1 year ago • 2 min read

Happy Sunday!

Embrace discomfort.

This was one of the takeaways of Moonage Daydream, the new film about David Bowie. I watched it yesterday, during a rest day (thank you for your flexibility in receiving this love note on a Sunday).

Moonage Daydream highlights David Bowie's artistic transformations -- so visible in the looks, music, and art he created. But it also shows how much Bowie nurtured his ability to change:

Interviewer: What’s "Changes" about?

Bowie: Changes, you know. Someone putting themselves through as much experimentation to, you know, sort of treating oneself as a bit of an experiment. I put myself in predicaments to see how I’ll cope with them a lot. It’s sort of trying to strengthen myself.

Bowie: I put myself in dangerous situations, which I did. Put myself in any situation which I feel I can’t cope with.

Interviewer: Dangerous situations? Such as what? Can you explain that?

Bowie: Yeah. Areas where I have to be sort of, social contact with people, which I’m not very good at doing. I put myself in –

Interviewer: I don’t quite know what you mean now.

Bowie: Well, I went to Los Angeles and I lived there for a couple of years, which is a city I really detest.

Interviewer: Yeah.

Bowie: So I went to live there to see what would happen to my writing.

He chose discomfort. I always imagined that Bowie enjoyed all his transformations. It didn't occur to me that they were difficult for him, that he chose to put himself on the edge, to put himself in discomfort, because it was where he would grow.

Of course.

Embracing discomfort doesn't come easily to me, but I'm learning from Bowie.

Even if we're not pop stars, we can embrace Bowie-level discomfort.

Share something at open mic night

Ask for a raise

Make a heart-centered decision your family disagrees with

Spend time with a new group of people

Talk about money, sex, or death with your people

Say no to your child

Say yes to your child

Share something intimate about yourself with a friend

Being willing to feel discomfort -- to open up to the possibility of disappointment, embarrassment, rejection, disapproval -- and to love yourself and life itself, whatever happens, is the key to transformation. Being willing to feel discomfort is how we become the next version of ourselves.

Turn and face the strange

Do you find yourself not considering something because it might not work out or because others might disapprove? This week, consider how embracing discomfort might invite your transformation. Embrace your inner Bowie and consider how discomfort can fuel your ch-ch-ch- changes.


Bowie makes an appearance in this week's podcast as well. I named my retriever mind-dog Bowie (Episode 2, How to Look for Magic), in honor of David Bowie's ability to change. Bowie the mind-dog goes out and looks for whatever we tell him to find. So we want to make sure to tell him to look for whatever we hope to find. This week, Bowie thinks polyamorously.

Episode #36: Polyamorous Thinking

Ep #36

Today's episode learns from polyamory. Even if polyamorous romance isn't your thing, polyamorous thinking will be so helpful.

This episode is for you if there are parts of your life that feel in conflict.

Maybe you don’t know how to balance work life and home life. Maybe your head and your heart don’t get along. Maybe you think your love of creating art conflicts with your desire to make money.

What will help these situations is something I call polyamorous thinking and it’s the result of a breakthrough I had about my own life. Take a listen and let me know what you think.

Love, Rachel

P.S. If you know someone who would enjoy this love note, please forward this to them, and send them here to get their own delivered weekly!

P.P.S. If you need some inspiration, here's Bowie doing "Changes"

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Rachel Baum

Certified Life Coach and host of the Making Midlife Magic podcast

I'm a life coach, college professor, and former president of the Overthinkers Club. Also, I host the Making Midlife Magic podcast. I love helping middle aged people dream again and create lives they love. Sign up to get inspiring mind shifts sent right to your email box. I don't over-send, and you can unsubscribe any time. This March & April I'm celebrating my podcast-versary with some delightful giveaways, so now is a great time to sign up!

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