Inhabitions, Mistakes, and Courage

Here’s an interesting bit of trivia for you: This blog has an unofficial title in my email, web browser, and the place where I store my passwords.

It’s called “Ooooops”.

(The number of ‘o’s varies.)

You see, when I first signed up for WordPress and created this page, it was pretty late at night. Very late. And I don’t know if you have noticed this, but your inhibitions get slightly lowered at night when your body is sleep deprived. For example, you know that you really should start studying for that test or put a load into the laundry machine, but you don’t have the willpower and end up cruising Facebook or Meetup.com for a couple of hours.

Anyway, it was one of those nights when I thought it would be an amazing idea to start a blog. I mean, there are so many of them on the internet! I don’t even need to pay any money to start it up; I just have to click here and . . . done! And then I’ll just do an easily recognizable programming joke as my first post, like so . . .

The next day, I was already starting to regret it. All of my emails and bookmarks got shuffled under their own neat little “Oooops” folders and hidden away. I tried to forget it ever happened. What had I been thinking? Me, start a blog? Sure, I want to be a writer, but that’s no reason to inflict my petty thoughts on the world. Sure, some day I’d have something important and interesting to write about, but for now I should just lay low and practice my craft in private.

This is the entirely wrong mindset. If I had continued thinking like that, then I’d spend all of my time hiding under the blankets and never get anything done. I’d never go to the gym because I thought I looked too fat. I’d never try out a new board game if I didn’t already know the rules and strategies. I live in that mentality far too often. I find myself too afraid to reach for things and end up hurting myself with my inaction.

“Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.” (Albert Einstein)

“There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.” -Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist

So, right now, I’m glad that I created this page in a fit of insomnia-induced poor judgement. Otherwise, I might have waited years (many, many years) before I started posting. And even if I don’t know what I want to with this blog yet, and even though no one is reading it, I’m proud that I’ve started it, that I’m working on it.

I’m stretchering myself, and practicing my courage, just little bit with each post. Because, yes, it’s terrifying to put words up where they can bee seen by everyone. But then, it’s good practice for being a published author. And that, right there, is a dream worth feeling vulnerable for.

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