"Can — I — do — this?" you ask as you stare into your computer screen late into the night.
The tiredness is getting intolerable. Guzzling your french-pressed brew. You google: meditation for stress relief. Placing your feet flat on the earth, sliding your fingers away from your keyboard to rest your palms facing up on your lap.
One deep, long inhale.
You unlock your lips and release a thunderous sigh, and you wait for something to happen. For your limiting thoughts — that reckless chatter in the back of your skull — to fade away.
It’s not working this time. You try to find stillness another way. You need to amplify your conscious confidence. A deadline beckons. You google: something a little more your speed. You TURN UP THE VOLUME. The dark voices that whisper nonsense into your ear:
"it isn’t good enough,"
"no one cares,"
"who will read this?"
You drown them out. That dirty baseline and heavy drumbeat soaks them up like they are wading through quick sand. They move frantically, trying to come up for air, but the more they fight to yell in your direction the faster they sink.
Now it’s just you — but, still, you are not alone.
You are not alone in your insecurity. Creativity is inherently insecure. When we bare our ideas to our peers about the business we dream of building; before we read aloud the poem we wrote; when we submit our book proposals to our agents and email our projects to our superiors, we feel that sharp, tingling pang of doubt.
“Maturity comes to you only when you accept this. And not only accept; you start rejoicing in it. Life is insecure... that means life is free. If there is security then there will be bondage; if everything is certain then there will be no freedom. If tomorrow is fixed then there can be security, but you have no freedom. Then you are just like a robot. You have to fulfill certain things that are already predestined.” - Osho
The more we put out into the world, the more light shed on the sensitive parts of ourselves, the more we become insecure. When we stop battling this, we can start winning. Regardless of how our art, performance, and work is received, the simple act of showing someone is worth celebrating. We may stutter when we have the floor, we may fall down the stairs with, like, 10,000 people watching.
Do not shrink in embarrassment. When the inevitable misspelling/shit storm/omfg-thing happens we will belly-laugh, learn something and know for certain that we are still on our way.
Even as you stumble you are getting closer to wherever it is you are headed.
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