Thursday, April 29, 2010

how to ruin your morning

Step one: Waste time on Facebook, clicking through photos of acquaintances from college, forgotten friends from high school. Notice someone looks like they are having a good time, living a fashionable life in a hip city with a cool job. Google this person and hope they don't check their stats because seriously, who else lives in Nacogdoches? See that their life looks pretty awesome. Notice they have the job you want. Read about how they published a book of photography. Gaze in envy at their roof top herb garden and Saturday night gallery openings.

Step two: Berate yourself for not having your dream job, for not even really trying to get your dream job. Think about how you don't take risks, how you are buried in debt and are thus not free to take risks. Curse the fact that you still have not written a book, have only one published story to your name, and you still don't have a goddamn bed frame. Worry that you will never accomplish anything BIG or IMPORTANT for as long as you live.

Step three: Take a series of deep breaths and calm yourself down. Remind yourself that you have accomplished a lot. So what if you live in East Texas and not Park Slope. So what if you spend your weekends at the Farmers' Market and not a vegan coffee shop, sipping on soy lattes and dining on tofu scramble. This may not be the life you envisioned, but isn't it cool and different and weird in it's own way? Isn't it?

Step four: Click on that person's website a second time (really hoping they don't check their stats, because seriously - Nacogdoches? Twice?) and examine their resume. Think about how their job might not be as perfect as you dream, but consider ways you might change your own circumstances. Decide that you are not a failure, but a work in progress. Tell yourself that you are so young, and have so much time to accomplish things, but remind yourself that you should probably start now. One more series of deep breaths. Close the windows. Open a blank document.

Step five: Begin, again.