The Unwritten Pages of Your Life’s Story
Last week, I published a poem called Of This New Day, which I based on the imagery of pen writing out dreams into a biography of sorts. The uncertain future has been on my mind lately, thoughts on what I can and want to accomplish with the unwritten pages of my life’s story. I find it a therapeutic way to gain motivation in times of difficulty, and I think it’s something that can benefit anyone. It forces you to be honest, to evaluate where you are and what needs to happen for you to achieve the desires of your heart. I’ll write a short one out right now to give you an idea of what I mean:
“Trevor struggled for a time as a writer, mostly because the shift he made to it lacked organization and strictness, a sharp contrast from a life plan that was originally meant to take him to law school. He also had a perfectionist knack that made it difficult for him to move quickly. He was a good writer, but he wasn’t the best editor, nor was he experienced in marketing, business, or design. He also found it difficult to find an audience, being more interested writing the kinds of stories he wanted to and letting them drift out into the world rather than focusing on the more business-savvy techniques of honing in on specific audiences and catering to them.
“It therefore took him several years to build a platform and following. In the meantime, he found work in finance, something that had always intrigued him during his studies at Brigham Young University. Although it made it difficult for him to dedicate all the time he wanted to his ambitions for becoming a more widely read author, it allowed him to meet the love of his life and start a family without the worries normally accompanying the starving-artist lifestyle he would have had to keep up without a second job.
“He worked long hours and slept little, but somehow managed to pushed forward with his writing until he began finding success with a small but loyal following that slowlycontinued to grow. At the time, he commented that he ‘could die happy with what [he] had accomplished in obscurity,’ but little did he know just what awaited him only a short time later.”
Honestly, I got lost writing that a little bit, but let me get back to you. The story before you is blank. The sky could be the limit. But once that idea gets into your head and you choose to do something, difficulty often lies just around the corner. Personally, I get little panic attacks that make it difficult to work for a few hours if not whole days, though I think we all do to some extent. I have felt and continue to feel the insecurities that hope and ambition can produce. You’ll feel them as well. I want you to know that these feelings are normal, and that you can overcome them. Those moments when you lie in bed and look at the ceiling, imagining how impossible all that you desire seems to be, those are things you can push through. They become easier to deal with as you begin to make progress, though I wonder if they ever completely go away.
Keep in mind that progress, however it comes, doesn’t always lead you to where you plan on going. You dream of something happening and work hard for it, and sometimes it doesn’t work out. I can’t promise you a specific success, just as I can’t promise it to myself, but I can promise you meaningful success, something real and full of substance that you receive from pushing beyond those panic attacks and anxieties. There is a joy that comes from telling your fears that you don’t care if they are right, that you are going to push through them anyway.
Self-worth is among the greatest feelings a person can have. That’s why it is so wonderful when we seek to lift other people up, to make them smile, to spend time with them. In so doing, we are telling them that they are worth something to us, that their existence matters to us, that they are precious. When you look at the empty pages of your life and decide to fill them with good things, with the substance of dreams, you are deciding that you are worth something, that the white canvas before you will be brushed with meaning and beauty. There is joy in that, and I hope you push through and find it.