the art of avoidance.

“When you try to do or be something, you can’t do it or be it. Because trying is not the same as being. Trying flies in a circle around the moment and being is inside of it. You must be.” – Augusten Burroughs

Currently reading “This Is How” by Augusten Burroughs, one of my favorite authors. I’m pretty sure I enjoy reading him because he comes off somewhat narcissistically, and if I ever finished my book I’d probably come off narcissistically, too.

That said, this book is self-helpy (which I’m like, HEY! MORE HELP!) and he – who is not a therapist or a doctor – slaps you in the face with advice. I’m cool with it, actually, because he’s funny, but I’m also taking book breaks because… he is speaking (writing) truth that I’m squirming away from faster than a child who was just told that it’s time to take a bath.

The above quote, for example. It’s from the chapter on job interviews, but is easily as applicable to any other area. I frequently tell myself to try a lot.  I frequently say that I am trying. But really, I just think about what could be and stay inactive. And I tell myself to be more confident, but really, there are things I know I can do – I’m just afraid of what other people might think of me.

I need to stop giving a shit about what other people think. (This is the smartest thing I’ve written all day.) When I was 17, I heard a mixtape from a homeless man. Here was his flow: “April fools, april rain, April showers, pots and pans….” This experience has stayed with me, even now, because: 1) the mixtape was bad. And someone bought it for $3. 2) the mixtape was bad. and I remember it, 11 years later. 3) the mixtape was bad, and the dude didn’t care. He just went out and did what he had to do.

Here’s to inching closer to the inside of that circle…

Have a good night, everyone.

257 Responses to “the art of avoidance.”

  1. charlottecarrendar

    It’s harder than you think, to not care what others think. I guess at some point we always seek approval from others, to know we are on the right track. The other day, I wrote a piece that pleased me greatly, and I got a lot of feelings of accomplishment. It didn’t get a lot of likes, may not have been everyone’s cup of tea, but to me, it meant the world, and I was happy enough with that.

  2. Katie

    It is hard not to care, I agree. But do it! If you only care what you think of you, you will be ok. Unless you are a big jerk, of course, but don’t worry, because I don’t think you are. But you don’t care what I think, anyway!

  3. rebecca2000

    I used to do everything with what others would think in mind. As I have gotten older, I found people pleasing only worked for a little while. Eventually I couldn’t be enough for everyone. The more you live up to others expectations the more expectations they put on you. I now do things with a good heart and spirit but that is all. I resent expectation now.

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