Atelophobia. The fear of imperfection. Of not being good enough.
Although I’m generally fairly perfectionistic in life, when I write I’m mainly afraid of being overlooked. I don’t care as much about everything being exactly how I want it to be, but I am afraid that my writing is just not worth people’s time.
Many people seek inspiration by observing those who excel in the areas in which they aspire to improve. I personally love watching interviews with my role models, reading books by people I aspire to be like, and engaging in discussion about topics in which I’m interested. That’s just it, though. Everywhere I look, I see people who are seemingly so much more qualified, more eloquent, and I think, more passionate than me. Although I know they may be older, be more experienced, or have had more, or different opportunities, I can’t help but wonder why I continue to put myself out there, as these more experienced individuals who say very similar things, are able to reach and impact more people.
In this same way, I can never commit to just one pastime. It’s not necessarily that I want to be the best at everything, but just the fact that other people are better than me at the things I like doing, makes me think I’m better off trying something else. Success for me is mostly measured in how many people I reach, even just my external impact in general. Even if I’m not bad at something, I never feel good enough until other people have not only affirmed this, but have given concrete examples of how they were affected by my actions. In some areas, I’ve accepted this aspect as part of my personality and do things just because I enjoy them, but in other areas, I feel the need to really, really push the limits and go beyond everyone’s expectations. I guess that when I do spend the time and energy I do, on one thing, I really do care about it.
It’s so much easier said than done, especially in regards to my own life, but no matter how much better everyone else might seem, I believe that we all need to try. Maybe we’ll find our niches in the world, or maybe we’ll give up. Maybe we’ve realized that the point is not to find a niche, but rather to connect them all. Maybe we don’t have to have developed and in-depth views on a few things, but rather an understanding of the bigger picture, of ourselves and how we can interact and have an impact on the world around us.
Maybe it’s not about being good enough, but just about being ourselves.