What version of yourself are you waiting for to do what you want to do?
I don’t know what that is. Maybe you want to write, paint, start a business, or move to Paris…
What version of yourself would do that thing, and why aren’t you THAT person yet?
Do you need to be smarter, more skilled, or more experienced, to do that thing and offer your unique work to the world?
No, none of that is the problem. You might convince yourself they’re the problem to hide the truth.
If you’re not already in the process of doing or creating the thing you want, there is only one thing in the way.
The only thing that has ever been in your way is the fear of judgment…
Because once you try, do, or express something that is important to you…
The moment you put it into the world as a business, book, building, blog, or bold action…
It stops being yours.
You give that work away and give yourself away with it.
It is a bold act because there is no telling how the rest of the world will interpret your work (I’ll talk more about the way they interpret your work in a future post).
Still, there is something even worse than judgment.
The Widely Preferred Path
The easier thing to do would be to keep your work hidden.
Keep it all private and personal.
Most people do this.
This way, nobody else can judge it.
The irony is that this is far worse than any judgment.
There is often no harsher critic of your work than yourself.
If you weren’t so brutal in your criticism, you’d have no concerns about letting everyone see your work.
You set your own bar so high and expect others to say, “that’s it?”
Actually, what they usually say is nothing at all.
The negative responses are all in your head.
By letting your inner critic make you believe there is some judgment to avoid, you silence yourself.
Beating Your Projected Inner Critic
The only person to concern yourself with is your inner critic.
You don’t even need to impress her, you just have to ignore her.
She is there for a reason. It’s just not a reason you need to concern yourself with. Not now. That’s her business.
So, when your inner critic says, “is that it?” You can respond…
Well, yes. Of course. For now.
You don’t complete a lifetime’s work in one sitting…
And you can’t complete your life’s work without completing the work in front of you.
If you’re ashamed of your work, put it on display anyway. At least that way it can teach you a lesson.
Without sharing, the work just sits and mocks you.
Worst case scenario: The world is in consensus that your work is terrible.
Even then, that comes as no surprise? That’s what you thought would happen.
Now you can move onto what’s next.
Plus, here’s the secret. The world is never in consensus.
Someone would have cared. It’s your job to make sure they have the chance.
Being the Person that Hits Publish
Or presses send. Or submits a proposal. Or takes the big leap.
Whatever that big leap is for you, you are already that person.
So often, you’ll say there are just a few changes to make, a little more information to find, or some tweaks to reach perfection and make that move.
Nothing can happen to magically make you ready. You just need to do it anyway.
Then, whatever changes, information, or tweaks you need will find you afterward. Not now. You don’t need them yet.
What you need to do is take your next step by sharing your process.
If you’re not putting the process first, you’re giving yourself a tremendous load to carry. But I’ve put enough on your plate.
For now, it is enough to say that the process (whatever that process is for you) of doing the work in front of you is your next step.
Tomorrow, I’ll talk more about the danger of skipping that process.
M.J. ‘it’s all about the process’ Hutchison