This is kinda sappy, self-indulgent, and completely devoid of curse words... so you may want to skip it.
A while ago I mentioned that I have a problem. Since then, I've been thinking a lot about things... and stuff.
I've found that usually when I'm particularly depressed, furious, or filled with anxiety, it's because somewhere along the way I've connected the wrong dots. I thought that I had a self-improvement addiction because of an underlying sense of worthlessness; That everything I did was in a misguided attempt to cover up my own perceived shortcomings. Subtle yet important difference: It turns out that I had a passion for self improvement, and an underlying sense of worthlessness.
I had the yearn to be the best I could be way before the feelings of inadequacy, but the latter but a dark light on the former. I developed unhealthy ideas of what "the best" was, and failed to acknowledge those things that were really important, and already quite right with myself.
I believe in signs. Not like, stop signs. I mean, I believe that there are stop signs, but that's not what I'm talking about, and I think you know that. I'm talking like, Ace of Base "I saw the sign" signs. Yeah, I'm still an Atheist, but hear me out. When we need answers to our most difficult questions, two things are true.
1. We look for the answer.
2. We already know it.
The human mind has an uncanny ability to sort out that A leads to Z. It does it pretty quickly, but it does it behind the scenes. Problem is, we're usually not ready to believe ourselves until we're shown a step-by-step Power Point presentation explaining why A leads to Z. So we look for reasons, and we stretch a long way to bridge that gap. All of a sudden a finch singing on an oak tree means something. Whatever it takes to get your conscious mind caught up to your subconscious.
I saw a sign today. Recently I've seen so many people rise up against their fears and beat them. I can no longer believe, even a little, that it's something that only a few can do... if they're lucky enough. Everyone has the strength in them to be their best. Even me. It's the kind of thing you always know on some level, but you just need to be shown enough times to believe it.
I was never worthless. My brain has known that for a while, but it's hard to believe because it felt like it. But the sources of those feelings are a long way away now, and I'm surrounded by so many great things in my life. My self-improvement isn't a symptom of a disease, or a contest. It's a passion that makes me happy. It fulfills me. I don't care what my job is or where I am, as long as I'm always trying to be a little bit better than I was before. Not just learning new skills, or getting more fans, but being a better person. Laughing more. Helping more. Loving more. Learning not to ignore my faults, or dwell on them, but embracing them. and learning from them.
As long as I keep that up, I'll have a pretty good 2011. I hope that you do too.
I love you guys.