I’m in one of my regular cafes right now, trying to fill out an application that I am very excited about. I’m so excited, in fact, that I have writer’s block. On any given day, I tend to think and talk about so many different parts of life and reality that I don’t really get this kind of block very often. There is always some idea or concept rattling around in my head, ready to burst onto a computer screen or the page of a journal. However, it’s much harder to write about yourself or your accomplishments than it is to write about your ideas.
My standards are high, but only for myself. I wouldn’t call myself a cynical person, but I tend to expect less from others because I don’t want to overestimate what they might bring to a project or task. I always assume that I am going to have to pick up more work than my team members because that’s what I’ve typically done in the past. This is a reality of my life that I don’t mind. If you want something done well, do it yourself, right? Since graduation, this unequal distribution of work has slowly been getting better, as I am now working with teams that actually want to be a part of what they are doing and aren’t just forced into a coworking situation.
However, I still hold myself to a higher standard. I expect more than my best, I expect to achieve the “impossible.” I’ve accomplished a lot for an eighteen-year-old, but it’s not enough for me. A lot of family members and friends will make efforts to remind me that I am already ahead of the curve about most people my age, but that doesn’t affect how I see my productivity. I don’t care that I’m ahead in relation to others, I want to be ahead in regard to my past self. I don’t care if I’m ahead for my age, I don’t think that warrants any kind of arrogance or praise or extended laziness. I want people to push me and challenge me and be tough on me because I want people to expect more from me. I know I can always do more and I want my employers or coworkers or team members to know that too.
Sometimes, when I get a block like this, I try to remember that I shouldn’t ask anyone to hold me to a higher standard like I hold myself. If I receive this type of pressure internally and externally, it may eventually cripple me. The pressure I want from external sources is a mild challenge. I want those asking me to produce content or do marketing work or any kind of task to see that I am capable of doing better than I am already doing.
So this block is causing that higher standard to be challenged. Internally, I tell myself that I shouldn’t ever have writer’s block because that is something that people who don’t meet my standards have. That idea is not only false, but it’s also toxic. It’s not that I have to give myself permission to not meet these standards constantly, it’s that I have to understand what aspects of life this standard is applicable. Sometimes, I can’t control or impact whether or not I have a block. Writing about myself often gives me a block because I begin to think about how they compare to others and that irritates me.
I have a desire to be so good at what I do that I cannot be compared to others. That it won’t matter what I don’t have because what I do have is too remarkable to let anyone care about what I lack. That is not the case right now, but it is what I strive for, and it is what I will achieve one day.