June 28, 2021

Once we’ve seen a ghost, we’re always afraid of the dark


Most of us get scared and stop.

Traumatized by the criticism of our early attempts, we condemn our creative work to the nearest desk drawer, never to be revisited again. All because one schmuck with a white beard and elbow patches said that our writing was too conversational or lacked heart or didn’t meet modern language guidelines.

But that’s the way our egos work. They’re hypersensitive and infantile. Big babies that can’t stand to live in a world where they hear things that upset them.

Consider the young songwriter. He spends hours and hours perfecting his first tune, to the point that he’s finally ready to become an agency of sincere expression, giving strangers and friends alike the most secret impulses of his soul.

So he does. And then they rip the song shreds.

What are the odds of that artist sharing again any time soon?

Slim to none. Because now he’s seen the ghost and will always be afraid of the dark.

Look, life is already disappointing enough. Everybody you encounter is fighting a battle you know nothing about.

And so, why be the one who makes people scared of the dark? Even if it is easier to be a cynic than a celebrator, it still costs nothing to believe and encourage and affirm people’s work.

Be a source of light instead.

Are you fundamentally affirmative or automatically critical?