Writing It All Down

I’ve been revisiting the ol’ life plan since turning 31 two months ago. It’s been almost a year now that I’ve been dreaming of starting a business and what I thought was a hill that I could climb with patience and perseverance increasingly looks like a mountain whose top I can’t even see.

All that I really want to do at this point is write down the ideas so that at least I’ll have those to show for the weeks I spent hunkered in front of my monitor searching for a way to get my sense of hope and desperation into a form that the rest of the world could understand.

Wanu Picchu

I went to see my adviser in Nashville about a week ago and we discussed what I would do to complete my thesis. As I’ve started to work on it, I’m discovering the same perfectionism that has plagued me throughout the last year cropping up again. Designing computer systems and their interactions with people is my art. It’s called cathexis — the extension of oneself into a project. Some people get from painting or music, I get from seeing a system and feeling how it could be made to flow better.

I can crank out code to get a project done, but what I really enjoy is that point where it isn’t just about the product anymore. It almost feels like the thing exists outside of time and I don’t so much create it as simply help it find it’s way into our reality. It’s the same sense I think a sculptor has when talking about freeing a statue from the stone.

I’ve lost that though, or at least I’ve lost the ability to pin it down. This time the work really matters to me, both professionally and personally, and nothing I write out seems right. I’ve been thinking about the Ira Glass video and working at putting out something even when it isn’t as beautiful on the outside of my head as it was on the inside.

So, I’m getting back on the horse again. Though the process of formulating that decision seems to have scared the horse off once again so I’ll start again in the morning trying to hunt it down. I used to be a militantly honest person and I’ve left that behind, I’m thinking it may be the time to pick that banner up again.

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