It scares me to think of how many excuses I use. I'm hoping that one Friday morning I'll be able to draw a blank. It probably won't be until 2010 though. ;)

"It's not good enough."
This is an excuse I apply to a cornucopia of things. Writing a novel. Trying a difficult recipe. Re-decorating. Clearing out the clutter.

More often than not, I catch myself in the middle of a task and question my ability to complete it to some standard that is obviously not the one I'm achieving at the moment. The words don't flow smoothly enough. The bread doesn't rise enough. The couch is in the wrong spot for good chi and the clutter is sticking out from underneath the cushions.

But where do these high standards come from? And who created them? Surely just giving it my best should be good enough, right?

Does every swing at the bat have to result in a home run? I must admit, it scares me when sports analogies pop into my head; this isn't a natural state for me and I'm feeling kind of twitchy now.

This need for things to be perfect right away could also be a side-effect from my addiction to competition shows. America's Top Whatever, The Apprentice and The Amazing Race not only all start with "a," they've also ruined things for me. All those contestants, love 'em or hate 'em, really have ONE CHANCE to do things right or they're voted off, fired or lose the race. Okay, maybe I can't blame them entirely, but I seem to have this belief that most things should be easy to do -- and then I get really flustered when they're not.

Then again, why should things be easy? If everything was easy to do, we'd all be whatever we wanted to be just by hanging around the ice cream truck or sitting on the couch. My first attempts at writing a full-length novel would outsell anything by Nora Roberts and Stephen King combined.

Now that's a scary thought. ;) 

I guess what I need to learn is that we all gotta start somewhere -- and it can't be at the finish line. That would simply get boring after a while.

Well, that's what I'm telling myself. Le sigh.