People often ask me why I make references to being like a cuttlefish. I guess it does sound a little obscure if you don’t know much about the little guys. A few (?) years ago, I watched a documentary on cuttlefish. For those of you who don’t know, a cuttlefish is an adorable sea creature that belongs to the class Cephalopoda, which means that at family reunions there’s also slugs, squids and octopi present. Want to use your imagination? Think of an octopus that mated with a jellyfish and produced a hybrid of the two that vibrates the most beautiful colors. Cuttlefish have oodles of pigment sacks that they use to not only blend into their surroundings, but also to communicate with one another. This latter aspect is what makes them so special to me. Cuttlefish literally wear their emotions and thoughts. Yup. And I thought that I owned some cool jumpsuits. Cuttlefish communicate with one another by flashing colors throughout their body. What’s more, different color patterns also correspond to different emotions. When a cuttlefish is startled it flashes a different color pattern than when it is angry [and giving the stare down before the tentacle fight]. What you see is literally what you get with a cuttlefish. Neat hey?!? And so I started thinking… how beautiful would it be if we were all like cuttlefish?!? Yes, telepathic communication would be amazing because words so greatly limit our ability to express ourselves (as Hugo Ball said, “words are the first government”), but I think that’s asking a little much in this lifetime. What I mean is how beautiful would it be if we all just said what we meant, and meant what we said?!? If we dropped our masks and guards and insecurities and felt safe to just be ourselves and to express ourselves fully. No pretenses. No games. Only honesty and unconditional acceptance of ourselves, which would then create the space to unconditionally accept others. Imagine. A place where it’s not so scary to be open and vulnerable because it’s the norm… or at least those who surround us are too… and a place where there’s no need to or point in over-thinking or reading into what others say or do because everything is at face value. The true intentions are right there, shining bright. How refreshingly simple.
So that’s what I’m talking about when you read or hear me say, “like a cuttlefish.” Some people think that it’s a little Pollyanna-ish, but I don’t agree. Yes, I don’t necessarily believe that it is possible for everyone to subscribe to this philosophy. In fact, I firmly believe that we are all unique and independent beings and that no one way of being is right for all. However, I do know firsthand the contagious effect that being open and loving and accepting of others has. Even moreso, I know how nice it feels to not be closed off. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not all lollipops and helium balloons in my life. I still get insecure and stuck in my head… plus, what I’m starting to realize more and more is that while it isn’t easy being open and vulnerable with others, what’s even more difficult a lot of the times is being true and honest with yourself. And that’s another place where pruning your heart and the power of why kick in. By understanding ourselves and knowing where our places of fears lie, we can get past the Ego and the self-defeating chatter in our heads, and connect with our hearts and our real selves. It’s an uphill battle – my Ego still gets the better of me at times – but I’m trying. Little by little we can open ourselves just a bit… and a bit here and a bit there times a lifetime of personal growth = a hell of a lot. If ideas are like viruses and actions speak louder than words… then a re-love-ution is not such a Pollyanna-ish idea after all. We may not be able to change the world, but we can all make a [cuttlefish inspired] dent!