“Finished crap can be edited. Unfinished greatness languishes forever. The only bad writing is the thing you didn’t write!”
― Margarita Gakis
At times, I can be a slow learner. I shift into low gear, over-analyzing some lessons and life experiences, making them extremely difficult and complicated. Because I don’t fully understand what is being taught or tested, self-doubt creeps in when my guard is down. With fear at the reins, I start trivializing the whole experience.
I now understand I did this because in my mind I cannot fail–that is not an option. In order to maintain my family expectations, I pretended all is well. I’d work on this project and that project for a while, early on determining whatever I was working on was either too difficult or too simple. With that finely honed skill, I’d walk away from one task after another, allowing many to quietly slip away to sit alongside many others.
Over this past year, I’ve written about this behavior in hopes of discovering why I was such a star procrastinator. This dedication to self helped me begin to understand some of the reasons. The more I wrote, the more I began to see the pattern of self-deception which grew into a lifetime of disruptive behavior.
My Dad made it very clear that I was expected to do my best. My kid brain interpreted that to mean I had to be perfect. I was far from perfect but I became very good at pretending. Pretending can be very tough for a kid. Before long, my act began to develop weak spots. Over time, I learned how to patch those tears and quiet my internal critic.
All I had to do was make sure I was always, always, always busy.
When new assignments came along, I’d work on them whenever I could make the time. Because I was so busy, there was never enough time. I’d fill what extra moments I had with something I wanted to do, pushing that not so favorite job further into the land of tomorrow. By delaying, I’d found a way to put myself in hyper mode, ensuring I’d get it done–but not until the very last moment. This methodology always provided the perfect excuse in case what I’d been working on was not done as well as it could or should have been done. Or, if the whole project failed, it wasn’t my fault. I just did not have enough time.
Over this past year, I began to see how my fear of not being good enough–not being perfect–evolved into procrastination. I saw, often in spite of myself, I’d always ended up doing pretty well. I may not have gotten that A, but I’d never failed. My procrastination was a symptom of my self-doubt. I understood I no longer needed games or excuses. I was good enough simply by being me–by being who I am.
“You are always a valuable, worthwhile human being — not because anybody says so, not because you’re successful, not because you make a lot of money — but because you decide to believe it and for no other reason.”
― Wayne W. Dyer
Love and peace, Y’all.
Thank you, my dear friend, Mary, for letting me borrow your birthday bouquet today. I Love you.