I got introduced to Jon Acuff recently. And when I say “introduced” I mean I saw him on a stage from 50 yards away at a convention I attended recently. I liked what he said and how he said it, so I bought his book “Quitter“. I’m working my way through it and came across a wee-bit of wisdom for those of us who are trying to do stuff. My “stuff” (among others) is writing and creating. And in his book, Jon nailed me to the wall when he said:
“Whether you’re seventeen or forty-seven, there’s always the temptation to think that something has ‘passed us by.’ And now that we feel a little buzz to get things going, now that we feel a little momentum starting to build, it’s easy to get a touch of procrastinating perfectionism. And that tends to cripple our ability to finish.”
“The things you create and share will always out-perform the things that stay stuck in your head or your desk or your laptop. You might love the ideas you have inside you. You might be more proud of them than any other project you’ve ever put together. But if you don’t follow through with them they don’t do much good.”
I have honestly feared clicking that “Publish” button to the right of my blog screen because for me, that’s a HUGE commitment. That’s a “shoving the baby bird from the nest” moment for me. That’s a “Okay, world. Be good to my kid” moment. It’s why I don’t publish more than I do. Because if its not what I consider ready for its close-up, it never sees the light of day.
There’s a game app I downloaded to my phone a couple of months ago. An app to increase my efficiency? An app to boost productivity? An app to get more organized? No. None of those. It was “Moto X Mayhem” and I love it.
It’s a free download game that puts me on the back of a dirt bike, navigating steep uphills, treacherous downhills, underground caves, thorny thistles, and death-defying cliff drops. I’ve gotten pretty good at it because I repeat the same levels over and over. I know each pebble on each course. I can see the drops before they appear on screen. I know just the right angle to lean in order to land the jump just so.
I’ve gotten pretty good at daily life in just the same way. When I approach the end of the on-ramp leading to the highway on my commute to work, I know there are 3 successive potholes toward the left of the lane. I avoid them without even thinking about it. After the 5th light, there’s a manhole cover that is recessed into the asphalt just a little bit that causes a bump when I drove over it. I know that as I approach that light, I mindlessly veer right to avoid that manhole.
Safety is nice, isn’t it? So is its first cousin, Predictability. They’re best buds with Security who holds hands with Control. But whether you’re seeking a dream, chasing an ambition, starting a new venture, or even following Jesus, Safety and its posse aren’t who you want to hang around. Instead, shake hands with Passion. Say “How-dee-doo” to Wonder. They’ll introduce you to their BFF’s Aliveness and Danger.
And maybe you’ll stop wondering if what you’re doing is good enough and start knowing that the life you’re living is the best life you can live.