Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Procrastination (sung to the tune of that Carly Simon song)

I am slowly coming to peace with myself, and this week, I had to learn to accept my tendency toward procrastination.

Now, I know I promised not to babble on about my inner dramas and keep this a knit blog, but hear me out. I have a terrible procrastination problem. I'm not as bad as some people I know, but it's bad enough. Perfectionism is a terrible cross to bear, and I tend to exhibit it as an unwillingness to actually do something until I know I've planned it out to the most distant and implausible exigency. Which is foolishness; life is so incredibly vast and unpredictable as to make that level of planning impossible. Heck, just about any level of planning other than, "I want to get there, and this seems like it might be a good first step" is pretty silly, on the whole. I know this, have always done so, and accept it--therefore, the net effect of the whole bother is that I just don't do anything, because I can't plan it out to allow for every possible situation that might present itself and therefore cannot guarantee the thing will be perfect. I'm not lazy, I'm just...a perfectionist.

How is this about knitting? Well. As the rest of my life goes, so goes the knitting. I have beautiful yarn. Gorgeous yarn. Elegant, indulgent, incredible yarn. And I don't want to...waste it on the imperfect project. More than that, I don't want to waste my time on the imperfect project, the frogging of the yarn and the further seeking of the perfect project.

Honestly, I don't know how I managed to function as a reasonably well-adjusted member of society under this burden! How much time have I wasted waiting for the time to be 'perfect'? How many opportunities have I given up because the indicators/time/situation wasn't 'perfect'?

There is no perfect, there only is. All I have is time, who is to say that what I choose to do with it is wasteful just because it does not produce a perfect, ideal project? I am so sensitive to criticism (implied or openly offered) that I sit frozen, unable to actually do anything with my only asset, my time, that I actually do manage to waste it. Completely and utterly, as I will never have it back. This. Is. Stupidity.

If I choose to use my $32 a skein yarn for a simple, garter stitch triangle shawl, whose business is it but my own? If I choose to use my holiday yarn for an experimental pattern I'm doing that might just end up looking the dog's breakfast*, whose business is it but my own? And if, just by chance, I choose to take a low-stress, simple, low-paying gig as a receptionist while I work on my other, more personal projects, that make my life happy and give me (personal) meaning, whose business is it but my own? Who else can have say in what I choose to do with my time, unless my time usage directly impacts their well being?

So why am I waiting for perfect? It does not exist. I need to accept my flaws, accept my imperfect nature and do something already, for crying out loud. No, the timing is not perfect, it's not ideal, heck, it's not even good, but I need to do something. Maybe that will teach me that perfect, in addition to not being possible, is also unnecessary.

See? It had to do with knitting. :-)

*Ironically, my dog's breakfast looks pretty darn tasty, as I make it myself. Yes, Dog is spoiled. No, I don't care if you think so.

No comments: