It is funny how a simple comment from someone can change your entire outlook. If you are anything like me, the change is painful and even shocking. A friend, coworker, and person I hold in high regard once told me that I needed to "stop playing the victim". It was an offhanded observation about my personality that almost brought me to my knees (I was sorely tempted to go cry in the bathroom). Even now, I feel echoes of the physical pangs evinced by that seemingly minuscule comment. It was an uncomfortable truth that I desperately needed to hear but no person in my life had ever dared to point out. That comment has haunted me for three years now; it has forced me to face some of my personal demons and begin creating a life that I want to live.
I recently read the book Do the Work by Steven Pressfield. You can find out more about the book here, including a link to download it for free. It is a book of uncomfortable truths that any of those of us trying to survive as creatives need to hear. In our affirmation based society, it is all too easy to surround yourself with yes men and those who will confirm that we are A-okay just as we are. In the book, Pressfied dares to point out that you are not good enough, you can be better- do better- be more. He highlights the pitfalls and obstacles that prevent all of us from becoming better people. Doing the work is a massive and painful undertaking that pushes us to get past stagnation and obstacles. It is a small book of uncomfortable truths that we all need to face. Read it and be grateful that there are people out there willing to point out the flaws we need to overcome in order to be great.
Adventures in pond water
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