Why Can’t I?

I have a ball of thread wound tight which resides deep in my gut. I don’t think I’ve ever been able to completely pick it apart, though I’ve pulled some strings loose over the years. The feelings brought about by this ball of string are those of fear and anxiety, often fed by unyielding perfectionism.

This perfectionism would bleed into my efforts to be creative and make something beautiful and colorful. I’ve felt that need (and you know exactly what need I’m talking about) to Create! Make! Splash some color on something! Hot-glue a thing to a thing to make another thing! (Possibly involving pom poms.)

But that incessant perfectionism would yammer in my ear, telling me that what I’m doing isn’t good enough, isn’t unique enough, isn’t PERFECT enough.

I’ve been CRIPPLED by that voice and I’ve often curled up in a corner of my mind and just let it wash over me and keep me still and complacent. And while I used to feel like I was all alone in these emotions, I know now that isn’t true.

Every artist feels this way sometimes. Every PERSON feels this way sometimes. I am not a special and unique snowflake, and I’m very glad. Knowing I’m not alone helps me to say:

“Oh my god, voice, SHUT THE HELL UP. I’m tired of listening to you! It’s my party and I’ll paint on shit if I want to!”

If you have that voice too, and you’ve been listening to it for far too long, then I challenge you to say “Why can’t I?” to that voice. Then pull out some paint, or some pom poms, or a graphing calculator, or a 2×4 and a bandsaw, or whatever creative medium you have the urge to use, and go bleeding USE it!

I’m going to do the same. And I’ll post about it. Because, why the hell not?