Change is scary, it really is. It’s not so much about changing your life, but the little things that keep us from growing – or in my case, healing. It’s about realizing that your mind is a liar sometimes. That some of the things we clung to our whole life are complete and utter bullshit. For me one of those things is the believe that something is fundamentally wrong with me. That, as a result from this wrongness I am destined to fail. What I didn’t realize is that I was the one setting myself up for failure before even trying.
I knew what I wanted to do with my life since I have been about ten years old. It’s just not a very safe choice and it certainly leaves a lot of room for failure. So, the adults did the responsible thing: They told me I should play it safe. Get a good job first, earn some money, and maybe try to do what I love more than anything on the side. For some that might work, I certainly got very good at convincing myself that it would – someday maybe in a distant future that never came. The problem was: I got the good job, always spend the money I made faster than I got it, never managed to do anything on the side, and was miserable. Absolutely miserable.
I am a writer that is what I am
My best friend is a nurse. She loves being a nurse, sure she complains about it from time to time, but she still loves it. She couldn’t be anything but a nurse. My other friend, he is a chemist trying to write his dissertation for about six years now. Still, he would never even consider being anything else but a chemist. I am doing something that is a mix of PR and Social Media – sounds very cool on paper, and if you like it, it probably is. But I don’t. I mean, it’s fine. Like all the other jobs I did before. But it’s not what I truly want to do.
I am a writer that’s what I am. That’s a quote from a movie – I forgot which one, but it stuck with me. Because like my friends who are doing exactly what they want to do, even if it means sucky pay and disappointment and even failure – there is only one thing I truly ever wanted to do: Write. And I always kind of did – for PR-articles or advertisement-texts or Social Media posts, very rarely for actual journalistic articles, and never actual fiction. I have folders with unfinished stories on my computer and about 10 different note books with parts of stories – but I never did anything with them. I never finished one. Why? Because I didn’t have time to properly write. Because I was scared. And because part of me always believed that I would fail if I tried anyway.
Not trying might be the biggest risk
Yes, there are so many success stories when it comes to writers – but seriously, do you know how many untold failures there are? Probably a thousand times more than the success stories. That’s an excuse of course. If you never try you may never fail. But you also may never succeed. I forgot about that part until it became obvious that I will never be satisfied with the substitute jobs I have been doing – and it only took a complete breakdown to realize it. Now it’s time for change.
I decided to quit my “fine” job. To move away from a place that has been making me sick for the past four years. To take a huge risk by trying to do the only thing I truly ever wanted. And it’s terrifying and part of me is hiding scared in a corner, screaming to be sensible about this. Maybe that part of me is right and I will fail miserably – but what if it’s worth it? Listening to the sensible part of me has ended with me going to a hospital. So there really is not much left for me to lose. Like Sylvester Stallone said in Rocky Balboa:
“But it ain’t about how hard ya hit. It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done!“