On momentum

momentum

If you get even the slightest bit of forward momentum, run with it. Don’t question it. Don’t hesitate.

Don’t let yourself go to that place in your mind where all of the worst-case scenarios lie. The worst-case scenario is that you leave your momentum hanging there, left unused. It’ll go stale quickly once it’s been opened, whether you use it or not. Yep—even when you run with it, you’ll still run out of it. But if you used what momentum you had, it wasn’t a waste. You’ll still hit a wall, but at least there will be something to show for it. When you’re at that wall, out of momentum, don’t walk away—tempting as it is. This will be the true test of your will. Of your desire. Now that the adrenaline has been tapped out, all that’s left is you. That can be a freaking scary thing to face. You? Alone with your thoughts? Terrifying. Or exhilarating. A little bit of both. That’s when you’ll produce either your greatest masterpiece or a pile of shit. You might prefer one over the other, but both are a success. Because even a pile of shit is something. It can always be cleaned up later. Don’t let others’ masterpieces distract or intimidate you. Chances are, they left a lot of piles of shit behind them, too. (Tired of the pile of shit analogy? Okay, sorry—moving on.) Those people have only chosen to show you the best of themselves, and you can’t blame them for that. It might be what you’re striving for, too, but don’t be afraid to get your very worst creation out first. That is what you call courage. Creation. Creation is courage. Vice versa. You’re not doing this for the comments, the “likes,” the praise. Don’t think about your audience before you’ve even started. You’ll just be paranoid that they’ll see right through you, and you’ll be right. This is yours. This momentum is yours. The stagnancy that follows is also yours. Use both to your advantage. Run with it. Slow down when you’re short of breath, but keep running. Run through, around, or over that wall. Something is there, waiting for you, on the other side.

And the only person it belongs to is you.

 

On an entirely unrelated note, I’m now a monthly contributor over at Pooping Rainbows. Intriguing, right? Check out my first blog post on kicking the bucket list.

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Comments

  1. I love this!

  2. Beautiful post Cassie. Wise words indeed.

  3. “If you used what momentum you had, it wasn’t a waste. You’ll still hit a wall, but at least there will be something to show for it.”

    YES. So often this is exactly how I have to talk myself into keeping going. Like, I’ve set myself a target to write 2000 words in a day, and about 3 words in I’m thinking: this is total rubbish. You’ll never be a writer. Why bother.

    The trick is to power through that and realize, even if I’ve written 2000 words of total crap, I’m still closer now than I was when I’d written none. Maybe all I’ve done is practice how NOT to write. But that’s a practice in itself. It’s worth it for the days when I read something back and go wow, that’s actually pretty good. Those are like JEWELS.

    • I know that feeling alll too well. Sometimes I’ll start a post with, “Three years ago” and I’m immediately like, NOPE. But those jewels, man. Those are what we live for.

  4. YES! Needed this. Awesome post. Favorite part: “Don’t let others’ masterpieces distract or intimidate you. Chances are, they left a lot of piles of shit behind them, too…Those people have only chosen to show you the best of themselves, and you can’t blame them for that. It might be what you’re striving for, too, but don’t be afraid to get your very worst creation out first.”

    In-frickin-deed.

  5. Great advice! I let the worst case scenario slow me down or hold me back too often..

    • I feel ya. I have this weird, sick mind that ALWAYS likes to imagine the worst-case scenarios. Not doing myself any favors that way. It’s a habit I’m trying to break.

  6. Ooh. Yes, I love this! You have no idea how many notebooks I have never written in for fear that whatever I write isn’t deserving of being there. Such a useless fear. I’mma bookmark this for the next time I’m paralysed by a pristine page!

    (Also, may I just say, I’m secretly glad there is a buffer of a few days between us on Pooping Rainbows. I don’t need that kind of comparison!)

  7. Wise beyond your years, Cass! Just wish I could always follow that advice……

  8. Oooooh Pooping Rainbows! I can’t wait to read that post, I’m going there right now 😀

  9. “You’re not doing this for the comments, the “likes,” the praise. Don’t think about your audience before you’ve even started. You’ll just be paranoid that they’ll see right through you, and you’ll be right. This is yours.”

    Shit girl, p-r-e-a-c-h.

  10. Very well put 🙂

    I do this horrible thing where I get waves of momentum, directed at a particular project, and stop myself with the thought “but I should use this energy on this other thing, instead!” …but then I end up staring at the thing I’ve deemed a priority, and lost the momentum. So silly!

  11. Yesssss!

    I totally agree that action is always better than inaction, even if that action doesn’t produce the Best Thing Evar. I’m often held back by decision paralysis while doing design work, but then I have to remind myself that producing a bunch of crap is practically a prerequisite to making something worthwhile. No one gets it right on the first try (except for those imaginary jerks who do).

    • Anyone who gets it right on the first try is just plain lucky. Anyone who ALWAYS gets it right on the first try is a freaking robot. I hate robots.

  12. so spot-on! loved every word.

Trackbacks

  1. […] read good writing, I encourage you to check out this post! Oh and right afterwards please check out On Momentum, one of my favorite posts from Cassie. The girl can do no […]

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  2. […] improving regardless. Change is inevitable, so it was time for me to make the decision to keep my momentum going. Look, guys, I’m not just talking out of my ass around here! I’m making the […]

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