I can probably count, on my fingers and toes, collectively, the number of times in which I’ve fully put myself forward, no hesitations or reservations in tow. Off the top of my head, I can lift my right index and middle fingers, but then I struggle to think of anything more. But ask me the number of times I’ve (over)extended myself for friends and I can probably rattle off a bunch of instances. Turn the focus back on me, and it becomes apparent that I am skittish to tread the waters.
This isn’t an attempt to make myself out to be a martyr; rather, quite the opposite. As much as I don’t want to say it, I have to admit that I’m scared – terrified to acknowledge my limits, preferring to live in a world where “I could’ve been better, if I pushed a little harder.” In some twisted way, there is no disappointment; after all, you didn’t completely fail, you merely didn’t put in the necessary bare minimum. There can only be elation and contentment, if only for a while, that you haven’t quite hit the wall and still “succeeded.”
But it isn’t as if it is all a conscious act, something that I can turn on and off. This vulnerability isn’t so superficial, it roots itself deeply in me, knowing when to throw the switches down and switch myself into an autopilot of sorts where I subconsciously reel in the dreams and ambitions before they are cast into imaginative waters far too murky.
So I sit here with papers, books, and applications with deadlines fast approaching, and can’t help but wonder if I’m doing everything that I can. I don’t think I am; actually, I’m pretty sure I’m not. I do suppose, though, that I ought to take myself a little more seriously and ask of myself to try a little harder to challenge myself before I begin wondering again, “what if I had done a little more?”
After all, attaining “safe” shouldn’t be anyone’s goal.
Image via Flickr (user: bionicteaching)