Thursday, May 03, 2007

I've had what feels like an aimless, meandering week, so it deserves an aimless, meandering blog entry. I simply have had no inclination to do much of anything over the past few days, and to be honest it has bugged the hell out of me. I know that I'm a better person when I have a focus: getting something I've set my mind on completed always leaves me feeling good, yet I all too frequently allow myself to drift. A friend of mine once asked me what the hell I was doing teaching, when I should be doing so much more, and although they were right, I couldn't answer them. On reflection, and trying to be utterly honest, the only conclusions I could come to were these:
1. I like being a big fish in a small pond.
2. I'm afraid of success.
3. In some way, I find selling myself, in terms of saying who I am and what I'm truly capable of doing, somehow immoral.
To deal with these in order. For the first point, I'm not alone in this. That is, of course, no excuse: I should be able to move on, and risk not being more than a minnow in the ocean. Quite clearly, this is related to my second point. Additionally, big fish in small ponds are doomed to fail and diminish, so I really should not be afraid to move on to bigger waters. Dealing with the second point, why this should be the case, I'm not really sure, yet I'm certain it's true. Again, it is absurd, because I know that where I have taken a risk, made a leap in the dark as it were, I have almost always been successful. It's staying still and moping that I should be afraid of.
These two things though lead me to point three. The immorality and essential dishonesty that underpins the selling of the self. I have talked about my hatred of advertising on this blog before. Likewise, I have talked about credospheres, which work on a personal and public scale, and have hinted at how it is essentially immoral to manipulate them in order to get acheive personal, selfish advantages. As I person, I am a skeptical, cautious person by nature. Unfortunately, this also extends to myself. In a way, I am continually self-monitoring, indeed, self-censoring. This has its advantages - I am not someone of whom it can be said that I am easily fooled - yet the main disadvantage is that I do not really achieve what I am capable of, simply because I don't believe in myself sufficiently.
I have always been somewhat envious of people who are single-minded in their approach to things, while berating them for being blinkered and ignorant of the world beyond their aims. I am envious because they can get specific targets, and because they seem to be rewarded for being blinkered. I have always found itb difficult to understand the mindset required to be able to do this: It is the blindness of an arrow flying through a beautiful landscape, oblivious to all but its target. Only now do I have some understanding of it. Also, the selfishness required has always struck me as being essentially wrong.
However, I am beginning to think I am wrong.
I watched 'Good Will Hunting' the other day, and while it is, in essence, a fairly typical American self-actualisation film, I did find myself identifying very strongly with the central character. In particular, there is a scene where his friend tells him that is more insulting not to go for success when you are capable of doing so, than actually going for it. Yes, yes, all very carpe diem, but when i consider how hard my parents worked so I and my sister could be succesful, I have to take it on board. Now, I have a decent job that I do well, yet I can still do so much more.
It means I have to stand on my soapbox, then take a dive into that big scary ocean.

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