How to be intense

How difficult it is to be close to intense people, and why?

I think intensity can be threatening all by itself — subconsciously — we seem to prefer to have an equilibrium of energy, perhaps. Exuberance, passion, fierceness, depth… can rock the boat without meaning to.

But I think the bigger problem with intensity is its tendency to be sharp-edged and hard. An intense person who is unrealistic, or demanding, or spilling out of boundaries, is uncomfortable to be with.

Hence I was thinking about a phrase, “well-oiled intensity,” which sounds a bit like something you’d see in an ad, which got me thinking about “Smoothing Lotion (for well-oiled intensity),” and then about “Friend Repellant,” and how using the one could eliminate the need for the other…

Perhaps it is possible to be intense without bowling other people over with it — not that intense people do that on purpose. Perhaps with practice of such things as mindfulness, radical acceptance, and faith, we can smooth the rough pointy edges and be felt as peaceful and peace-giving.

The “quiet and gentle spirit” urged for women in one of the New Testament letters doesn’t equate to lack of feeling, blandness, composure, having one’s act together, never having anything to say, or even never being boisterous. I think it’s much more getting at this idea of being well-oiled and smoothed.

I want to be smoothed in such a way — not to have all my intensity erased into oblivion, but to have that intensity well-oiled, the rough sharpness smoothed, soothed, shined.

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