For a woman who has almost ninety unpublished blog post drafts, this topic is certainly one of great interest to me.
As I’ve stated throughout the past several months, my goal is to flourish in writing. I have been creating stories and journal pieces most of my life, but only at the turn of thirty thought anything of making a life from it. I was a social worker. I went to school to complete my masters degree and now I was thinking of dropping everything and heading into the writing world… Am I crazy?
Perhaps, but there are worse things. Like not living up to yourself.
I recently heard somewhere, probably on a passing Instagram post, that every human has genius level potential in something. What that thing is will be different for everyone, but that everyone indeed has, at least, that one thing.
I took some time to think about this, meditated on it. It immediately stirred my anxiety. I’m not brilliant at writing. I don’t have all the fancy words to put me on an international bestselling list. I’m not some unfound soul whose writings are going to change the global narrative, but that is what I want. So what the heck do I do?
Therein lies the true meaning of genius.
This statement could take me in two very different directions: one of perfection and the other of progress.
Perfection, while it seems like what one should strive for, is actually the path to be left behind. It’s the reason I have eighty-six drafts and only twenty-two published. Perfection is not standard, which means it is not to be expected out of every output.
I believe that perfection is actually a form of fear. A fear of failure and rejection. It’s that little voice in your head telling you that you aren’t going to amount to anything, that you can never reach your potential because you could never be as good as perfection.
What I use to visualize this is Junie B. Jones. Know her? It is an old school series from my elementary years. In the books, Junie B. has this friend, Lucille. Lucille is rich! She had the best dresses, on-point ringlets, and THE socks with little ruffles to go with her black patent leather shoes. Lucille was perfection and Junie B. knew it.
I see perfect in this way. Like a little girl on the playground battering me with her separateness. Singing praises about herself and the things she has that no one else seems able to achieve.
“Nah, nah, I’m special and you’re not! Ha, ha, I’ve got everything you want!”
Instead, let’s investigate the other path, that of progress. It sounds much less… exciting, and that’s because its not. Progress isn’t the spark that sets everything aflame, it’s the act of adding twigs to light the base of your fire. Progress isn’t the book that simply writes itself as though from the lips of the Goddess, it’s the daily grind of attending to something you say will happen whether you believe it will or not. Progress is the steady, ongoing pressure of knowing that everything you do comes from you. That your action is the perfection being constantly sought. This, in my mind, is a genius concept. Had Einstein stopped and simply said, it will come all at once perfectly or it will not come at all, where might we be?
So, I’ve decided… No more drafting! I don’t care if what I write is absolute dribble, it will be placed on my blog for progress. I think I can even add another category to hold the things I know are trash, but get put up anyway. This post just might be the start of that category.
Today, I choose to find my genius, which is the agonizing, painful process of recognizing my humanity, and blogging it anyway.
Happy progress and fuck perfection.