failure

This weekend was the weekend I didn’t know I needed. This weekend was the weekend that I received so much unsolicited advice that really inspired me to be the kind of person I want to be. That made me more self-aware.

I first realized and admitted that I was wrong about something. And that’s a surprisingly powerful feeling.

After that, I talked with one of my bosses and was told that I should share more ideas. My boss said, “I wouldn’t be talking to you right now if I didn’t think you had ideas worth hearing.” Those words really changed something within me. For the past few weeks especially, I’ve been afraid to share my ideas out of fear of looking stupid or unimpressive. But people want to hear my ideas, even if they don’t necessarily like them. Ideas build real, tangible things. But they don’t build anything if I simply keep them to myself.

I needed a break. But I also needed people to challenge me to do better and open my eyes and explore because recently, I’ve fallen into the same routine. I’ve become afraid when I used to feel so sure. I walked into my first meeting with confidence and I vocalized my ideas and I don’t know what happened to that. But I’m bringing it back.

I don’t want routine. I don’t want strict schedules. I want to write stories that matter. I want to impact people. I want to be aware of the world around me.

In the past few weeks, I got so caught up in other things that I distanced myself from who I am.

I am reserved. I am quiet. But I am also full of ideas and words and stories and passions that could exist in the real world if only I spoke up.

I’ve said it again and again that I don’t want fear to silence me.

But fear still wins sometimes.

It still stops me from telling people how I feel and sharing ideas that I love and talking to new people.

I could tell you that I’m not afraid. But I am.

Fear should excite me rather than scare me. Fear should help me chase my dreams, not run away from them. Because when fear chases me away, I’m only running towards what I was afraid of all along: failure.

Messing up is not failure.

Failure is messing up and not taking accountability and learning from it. Failure is giving up. Failure is not even giving it a try to begin with. Failure is letting “what if” make its way into my vocabulary, weaving itself into sentences that could be better stories.

Stories that matter. Stories that are built out of ideas. Stories that are built from failing and learning and trying again. Stories that are worth hearing.

Paige

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“I guess you didn’t care, and I guess I liked that.”

Taylor Swift can really speak the truth sometimes. Because I seem to always put so much energy into relationships with people who don’t care about me or about anything. And I’m usually aware of it on some level. I always know that these people are not overly concerned and a little self-involved. I always know that they won’t text me “good morning” or buy me flowers. I always know that they won’t care about what I’m doing or who I’m with.

And I guess I like that.

I’m not the romantic type. I like my space. I like my work. I don’t want constant text messages or compliments because it doesn’t seem genuine to me and frankly, it just annoys me. Sorry (not sorry), it’s who I am. I don’t want flowers because I can’t keep them alive for more than about five seconds. I don’t want people to constantly question me about my whereabouts because I am my own person.

I’m independent and an introvert, so I never like people who I think will constantly be around. And in result, I surround myself with people who are just never around. I make excuses for them. I convince myself that one day it will be different. I play back their positive characteristics in my head. I fall into the trap all over again.

I’m also the queen of trying to rekindle old flames. I can’t just let go without giving people numerous chances to be the people I want them to be. I know that people aren’t perfect, but at the same time, I sometimes give them too much credit. Some people are never going to care. And I’m starting to realize that there’s nothing to like about that.

It’s one thing to be passionate about something and not center your life on relationships. It’s something completely different to not treat people well because you only care about what directly impacts you. I always hang onto people who do the latter and it fills my life with so much negative energy. I keep rekindling fires that really only ever existed in my mind.

The fire was there, sure. The connection was there. But I created it on my own. I built the fire and kept it burning with possibility. With little moments. With faint sparks.

I firmly believe that you have to try, rather than simply wonder, “what if…” so I keep tossing wood into a fire that kept flickering inconsistently, back and forth, over and over again. Because I couldn’t give up on it.

Throughout all of these negative relationships, I was always my own source of light. I could convince myself that other people kept it burning, but really, they only weakened the fire I had already built on my own.

I tried. But now I know.

You don’t care. And I can’t change that. I can’t add more wood to the fire to reveal that you’re simply misunderstood. No. You’re not worth the trouble.