“Or is it Day 2? Yesterday was my first official day but if today is Day 1 then that would make yesterday Day zero which doesn’t makes sense. There is no such thing as Day O, right? Right. Ok, based on that assumption, yesterday would be Day 1 and today is Day 2. Good. Need to fix that later.”
“Wait. Let’s think this through a bit more. If I get myself stuck into labeling each day, then do I have to write every day so there is consistency in the number of days from a sequencing perspective? What if I don’t write every day? Would I then write the number of the day that it has been since the beginning in reference to the calendar day or just put a number to represent the actual days I write?”
“Hmm. I can’t start writing without some structure and everything starts with a title. Let’s think this through on the possibilities of what could happen. Example: Day 1 (wrote), Day 2 (wrote), Day 3 (didn’t write), Day 4 (didn’t write), Day 5 (wrote). Let’s suppose that after I write today, I don’t write again for 2 days, would the next post be titled Day 3 (3rd day of writing) or Day 5? (5th day since that is when this whole crazy thing started)? This wasn’t my idea. I’m clearly not a writer since I can’t even figure out the basics 101 of title naming convention. But boy, do I love numbers! Let’s do a numbers project!”
Either number works.
“Well, maybe it would be better not to start with a numbering system. Maybe I should use topics or subjects instead. If I go that route, I would really need to put some thought into what I am writing in the body of the post and make a cohesive connection back to the subject title, right? Right. Would that lock me into a theme? Does it really have to match or can it be random? Should I decide on the title first and then write about it or should I just write it and then figure out the title after?”
Whichever you prefer.
“I really think it would be best to get a book on “How to Write”. I have no idea what I am doing which means I am definitely doing this wrong and this is going to end up being a failure. I’m pretty sure there are some rules or guidelines to follow in order to do this correctly. Also, let’s get some info to figure out how to work this new wordpress site too. I’m sure I’m missing out on some very important stuff. I shouldn’t start to write or publish ANYTHING until I really understand how to navigate, customize, manage this whole thing.”
It will be fine and we can figure it out as we go.
“See the word count number at the bottom of each post? I noticed that last night when we were on our millionth edit version of what we wrote yesterday. I wonder how many words is the right number to have per post? There were 1288 words on the first post. Is that a good or bad number? How long did it take me to write that minus the bazillion edits? I wonder how many words in general are in a good book? Hey, should I write a book or is this just some silly little blog project that will be dropped in a couple of days/weeks/months since I don’t finish a lot of things I start? What’s the plan here? Regardless, whatever the right number is, no doubt it’s big and this isn’t going to be easy.
Let’s just go with it.
“Yep, no plan. Great. This isn’t going to work anyway. Let’s bag this for now and do something else. It’s seems like it’s going to get complicated, and there is clearly a lot of stuff to think through if we really want to do this right. Plus, remember NOT A WRITER, comprendre? There is nothing to even write about that would be interesting, I mean what has happened today? Nothing, eh? Perfect. Nice job. Zero productivity. This whole “not working” thing is going to be a bust. How’s that savings account looking?”
Trust me. Everything is going to be ok.
There it is. This is the kinda stuff that is going on in my head right now at this very moment. Gee, lucky me!
Well, since I’ve opened a can of worms, shall we meet some of these characters? I’d like to introduce you to my very own perfectionist. It’s my 24/7 personal inner critic at its finest. Right, Wrong. Good, Bad. Black, White. You get the jist. (Or is it gist?) It always starts out so innocent, just a few little detailed questions here, little of clarification there and BAM! If I don’t catch it in time, the downward spiral begins. This character has been in the driver’s seat for quite a long time within my life’s journey and has mastered the art of self-judgment down to a science.
What I have learned about him is that nothing is actually ever good enough for this guy. The bar is so high that the majority of the time, it’s unreachable and unrealistic. But if I could ever achieve it, finally I would BE perfect (which I am not nor ever supposed to be) so it’s all just a strategic set up for Mission Impossible (without the Tom Cruise part) which will always guarantee failure. See the rub? Ouch. Actually, behind the scenes, the sly perfectionist secretly wants everything to be so completely perfect that no one else can judge us for not being good enough (or worthy of love..but we’ll get to that later).
Fascinating, isn’t it? The perfectionist falls into its own trap of constantly first judging itself so harshly that most of the time, it doesn’t even ever make it to looking at or facing anything else. This has shown up for me in many ways of my life with a VIP pass. Not starting projects, activities or attempting new experiences because I was afraid I couldn’t do it good enough and fail. Failure also attached for me as a mental survival picture from childhood. And since survival was a requirement to live, failure was certainly not an option. The perfectionist also shows up for me as not giving myself the praise and recognition for what I have actually truly have accomplished because I continue to always fall short of some unattainable self imposed expectations.
Oh, and it’s like the gift that keeps on giving. What we will also talk about later on is that all this judgment can be a projected onto others as well so it is just a big mess that ends up taking everyone down in the end. I’m just scratching the surface here but I’ll provide a lot more examples of this phenomenon over time along with a few questions you might want to ask yourself too. Before we go, I can’t leave without a one important honorable mention that is part of the whole foundation…
Ok, so my little friend mentioned above, we’ll call Mr. P for now, is sitting square on the shoulders of my Ego. (Mr. E? Uh…No, please don’t go down this route.) And together, they have 3 favorite outfits they like to wear together. Fear, Guilt and Shame. And let me tell you, faster than a Janet Jackson wardrobe malfunction, these can interchange at lightning speed. I’m talking shirts, skirts, shoes and accessories to match every size, color, season and trend. But in the end, nothing ever feels good enough and these guys never are ever satisfied or happy. And I’ve got a totally unorganized closet to prove it.
For many of us, the Ego is the primary voice we hear the most in our heads. It’s the one that usually speaks first and speaks the loudest. It often has a negative tone in either attacking our self or projecting our own anger, fear, frustration and judgment onto other people. One of the many unattractive moves the Ego also uses is denial. If we deny our truth or the truth of the situation, the Ego is safe to hide and fester. Fear is the primary fuel of the ego. But the good news is that will all that said, we do have a choice we can make in our minds on which voice we want to listen to at any moment. And we can use the Ego for good not just evil. YAHOO!! Let’s hear it for the good guys. It’s superhero time! I think that would be a great way to start off tomorrow’s post. Until then…
Good work today. I’m proud of you.
Oh. Did I really just hear that? 🙂 Ah, yes. It was my favorite voice, my higher self, the Soul that often speaks so softly I can’t even hear it. (Tears start to flow down my face) Yes. Yes. I heard it. And it definitely wasn’t from Mr. E. 🙂 Thank you dear Universe. I am grateful for all I have and all that I am. Today, Day number whatever IS a really good day. I can do this.
“P.S. 1551 word count on this one and I just remembered there is a ground zero kinda like Day zero so maybe leaving today as Day 1 is ok.”
Don’t worry, I love you too, Mr. E.