My Daily Court Hearings

Kintsugi Hope
2 min readFeb 29, 2024

I find myself daily squaring up to a judge, pleading the case for innocence, and occasionally surrendering myself as guilty, regardless of the truth in the allegations my imagination convicts me of.

It is curious, however, that despite showing up to these daily trials of character and action, conviction leads mostly to more trials, and very rarely a true sentencing.

To date, my imagination has brought against me charges of spelling mistakes with a penalty of losing a job, inadequate friendship abilities that commanded a sentence of eternal loneliness, the eating of a falafel wrap on a full stomach that carried the punishment of being nauseous for the rest of my life, and the uttering of an inappropriate word or two demanded of me a life of public ridicule and shame.

Anxiety can and will convict us strongly of the very average nuances of being human. The simplest and most common place mistakes we make end up shadowing over us and threaten hefty penalties and prices. However, at its root, the only true payment anxiety can demand of us, is our willing or unwilling attention. Attention to the allegation and its penalty, attention that sits you down in front of a bribed and damming jury.

This revelation has led me to ask the question, how do I discipline my attention? How do I make sure that I am focusing my attention on something other than being sentenced.

In short, I would like to suggest that we best discipline our attention from the outside in. For a long time, I considered the battleground of anxiety to be on the inside, waging lengthy wars on anxious thinking with internal monologuing and metaphoric chest beating. However, it has become apparent to me that deliberate, yet positive, thought capturing activity like writing, walking and working has in part reoriented my attention towards the creation of beautiful, wonderful, and brilliant things, and away from the anxious dialogue of my mind.

Let your practices inform your anxious imagination, and don’t always assume that your imagination should inform your practice. It can be unbelievably hard to control your attention without the support of an activity that beckons the best of you to concentrate on it.

To be clear, this is very much still a daily discipline for me, something I have to constantly work on.

Matt Cooper

Aspiring Author, Podcast Host, and Marketing Lead

For more content on the mitigating of anxiety, the imagination, and the creating of beauty, check out Matt’s podcast at https://theimagining.buzzsprout.com

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