Paralysis. You want to do something right, because you think you’ve only got one chance to do it.
I love writing letters. Real, stamped and posted letters appeal to me on many levels. They’re important to me, to send and to receive. I have one I’ve been meaning to write, but it’s been longer since I wrote a letter than it has since I wrote blog posts. If getting back to blogging has been hard, and I take letter writing more seriously, and it’s been this long… paralysis.
The letter was supposed to accompany food. Eventually I ate the food, because I had avoided writing the letter for so long.
If this letter isn’t good, will I ever get a chance to write another letter? For some reason, my brain lies to me and says, no, you will not get another chance to write a letter.
We all do this, in many different parts of our lives. We think the next thing we do is the last and most critical thing, and we paralyze ourselves trying to make it good.
Most of us don’t draw, because what if that next drawing sucks? It’s gonna suuuuuck for sure! And then we’ll never get to draw again.
We go to job interviews, and we stress about them going to go poorly, as if there aren’t going to be any more interviews ever again.
I know grown-ass men who are still afraid to tell a girl/boy that they like that girl/boy. As if they only get one chance to say it. As if there wouldn’t be another girl/boy in the future.
But there’s always going to be another! In fact, as you age, you will find that people bounce in and out of your life repeatedly, and that you re-evaluate people, and they re-evaluate you. You meet new people and you always will. You lose old friends and sometimes regain them.
There’s another job interview in the next few weeks, and there will be interview after interview after interview after interview until one goes well and you get hired. Everyone who is good at drawing got there by drawing another and another and another…
Everything is a sketch, and you already know you do some of your best, most inspired work when you stop taking things so seriously and just sketch the next moment.
I know you know what I’m trying to say. I’m not saying it well. I’ve got to find a way to break down this wall of understanding.
Or do I? No, I don’t! Day seven of blog posting is just the seventh out of hundreds I’ll write in the next decade. So, I’ll get another crack at making this argument.
Seven out of seven. Keep trying.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have a letter to sketch.