Fear of Failure - Page 2
I've tried late at night. In fact, I do some of my best writing then, mostly because I am free of distractions--the house is quiet, there's no one to bug me, the email and tweets and Facebook posts have slowed to a crawl, and I'm not hungry. But I'm a zombie the next morning. I recently came across a post about how living on less than 6 hours of sleep a day can cause heart attacks. My daughter's school recently recommended a book called Nurtureshock, which contains a whole chapter on how sleep deprivation can lead to depression, obesity, and stress-related illnesses. So much for late nights.
I've been trying, lately, to go to bed when I put the kids down. The problem is, I haven't been able to get to sleep before midnight since I started "sleep training" myself. I think I've been to bed so late for so long, my body clock has phase-shifted. That means early mornings are still out, too.
And then there's the Deadline Dilemma. One post every two weeks doesn't seem like much now, does it? But the closer that date gets, the harder it is to write--to find the time, the space, the subject matter, the perfect picture, the right title. And then there's that Fear of Failure thing.
I was in Honors English classes all through school. Right from the start, I was ahead of my peers in reading and writing. And the adults around me began to raise their expectations of my abilities. Let me just say that the worst possible thing you can say to a high-performing child is that you know they "can do better than that." The second worst is to give them high praise for their intelligence and ability. I know this last sounds strange, but for me, it meant that if I did something well and, later, I couldn't reach those heights again, I wouldn't be good enough, any more. So I stopped trying so hard. A B looks a lot better coming from a C student than from a student regularly pulling As.
So when I recently heard some praise about my writing from someone I really respected, I thought, Wow, that's awesome! She likes my stuff! And then I sat down to write another post. And I sat. And sat. It took me four full days (okay, nights) to write. And I was sure it wasn't nearly as good as the last few.Continued on the next page