Once upon a time, I was paralyzed by the fear of sucking. I could get out of my own way for about an hour, sometimes a couple days, and maybe a week if the stars were aligned. Then, the fear would set back in and I would dismantle whatever I had created. All my creativity and great ideas never had the opportunity to launch into the world because I would grab them as they were about to take off, throw them to the ground and crush them with my foot. And when I say once upon a time, I’m referring to Thursday. It’s Saturday. I spent all of Thursday sitting at work with this knot in my stomach feeling like I wanted to cry. And I did want to cry. Feeling like I have so much to give to the world, so much to contribute, but I’m stuck in a beige colored cube under florescent lights watching the clock on my computer until the second I can finally leave feels like death to a person like me. I’m not cut out for it. It kills me from the inside out. But do you want to know what is worse? It’s knowing that I am the ring leader of this conspiracy.
On my drive home from the dungeon on Thursday I decided to use a tool my dad taught me as a child, well actually it’s more of an ongoing never-ending lesson. I decided to think about what I DO want, instead of what I DON’T want. I know a lot about what I don’t want. The exact situation described above is what I don’t want. But until I know what I do want, I will be here, existing in a beige cell listening to my co-workers clip their fingernails and pondering a different life. So what do I want? Well, I want to be a writer I said out loud to myself. How do I do that? And then something miraculous happened. This complex plan was downloaded into my brain from the Heavens of how to execute my new career as a writer. Just kidding. That’s insane. That complexity is how I have always thought it had to happen. But the reality of it is… all I have to do is write. Duh. If I want to be a writer I have to write. It’s pretty fucking simple.
I’ve been here before. It’s this place where I realize my destiny is in my hands and my hands alone. I realize the simplicity of what I need to do and then instead I do what I explain in paragraph one above. I take my new creation and I crush the life out of and return to my despised routine.
Why do I do this? I wish I could say this was a complex series of intellectual reasons. But it’s not. I do this because I am scared I will suck. I am scared that I will suck so hard that I will be condemned to a life of… ah hem, sitting in a beige colored cube under fluorescent lighting trapped by the confines of time. So I guess I don’t have to point out the irony here.
I’m embarrassed don’t worry. But some gold did come from this. I realized that I will suck. I will suck hard sometimes. Some things I write will be a disaster. A train wreck. Some people will hate how I write. They will think I’m too vulgar, to vulnerable, maybe even annoying. Some people might do the worst thing ever and un-follow me from Instagram…*gasp!
And that’s all OK.
Because there will be others who are in the same boat as I. Some people that just need to know that they are not alone. They might feel better knowing that there is at least one person out there who is weirder than they are. It might be a relief to know that not everything is filtered selfies and fake-ass captions of life. It might be refreshing to know that it’s OK if you don’t get everything right on the first try. (Or the second or tenth.) And that there are other people who struggle to even get started.
I don’t make a lot of commitments. But when I do, I am as loyal as a yellow lab. And I made one on Thursday night. I made a commitment to the most important person in my life, myself. I decided that I was going to write every single day. And not only was I going to write every day, I was going to post my writing every day. I made the commitment that I was going to be willing to suck hard. That I was going to take any feedback with a grain of salt and continue to feed what fuels my soul.