Sometimes a little help is all you need
I have been feeling like a writer’s block on 2 legs. For months. It’s not only because of the pandemic. It’s because I don’t know who I’m writing for, and I don’t value my creativity enough to do it just for me. Ugh. The imposter syndrome is completely understandable when you don’t know what you could even teach and for what tiny group of people! I thought perhaps I could write guides and helpful suggestions for folks who are older and have trouble grokking the internet. Shock your sarcastic kids with your solid knowledge of stuff like domains, and how to get support, yaknow. But it feels like there’s not a real need for that, I just made it up because I feel comfortable with all things internet.
Then, being a lifelong learner with a ton of courses I haven’t finished and would love to organize, I thought of a lifelong learner’s courselet. Take a quiz, work with me for a week, and emerge knowing the courses you have, and being able to prioritize which ones to take. But I’m not a course expert – I’m just a person who has this issue. I started to doubt anyone else did.
Then I thought about teaching something related to Tokyo/Japan. But what in the world would that be? I don’t speak the language well enough and hardly read at all, although I’m trying to learn again. I don’t have that much innate interest in Japanese culture – I mean, my family here are serious foodies and I know what that kind of focus looks like. I might as well be living back in one of my NYC apartments in the East Village, back in the 80s, for all the cultural specificity I live with when I get home. That doesn’t say anything good about me, but the point of starting to write again is to be honest. It’s not that I don’t love aspects of being here. But not enough to consider myself an expert in any of it.
Then I thought about chronicling my creative/better health journey. And I laughed at myself: dude, you can barely record your food in MyFitnessPal after eating it. Please.
I thought about chronicling my attempts at photography. I thought about focusing on music again and reconnecting with my beloved but currently kind of estranged band family (not their fault, was too depressed to deal).
Then I happened to stumble on a Facebook post (on one of my rare forays on that platform), and I saw that a beloved was sharing being a creative coach. And it hit me: I need to put some skin in the game. I had actually been looking for a coach for a while, but expense and just feeling stuck wouldn’t allow me to make any actual moves. Yet this felt right.
We had our first session last night and it was like gentle lightning. She’s about small steps. I hate small steps. I despise process. I want to be instantly ‘there’ and perfect, and my habit is to beat myself up when that, inevitably, doesn’t happen. Her firm and gentle tone gave me a hand to step over the block, at least part way.
In part of my ‘lightness’ after the session, I wrote a song called Bucket of Clay. I’m going to sing it for real, to the simplest of backing tracks, and post it when it’s done.
So far, so much better than good. Sometimes a little bit of help that cuts through the fog of self-centeredness, is the antidote.