Experiencing complacency is like eating comfort food. You’ll keep eating and it’s comforting and enjoyable (in a lethargic kind of manner) but it’ll never satiate your lust. In this case, it’s the culmination and coalescence of my professional work life, personal life, and my writing schedule.
Authors note: I was going to launch into a soliloquy about several experiments on what precisely controls eating and the sensation of satiation but we just don’t have that kind of time.
But hey, we all love comfort food right? Even though we know it’s horrible for us. That’s complacency in a nutshell. There’s no way around it.
On one hand, it makes me feel comfortable and, as a rule of thumb, I’m not antsy or in any sort of immediate danger. This means, I can enjoy my life and not freak out about everything [eg: writing, publishing, life goals in general].
On the other hand, simultaneously, it draws me ever further from my goals. It makes me okay with how my world sits, sapping my ambition and willpower, all without my notice. All it takes is a hint, the slightest whiff that I’m “OK” with my current situation, like those last three wings and two slices of pizza from Friday’s “cheat day” bonanza.
Complacency, as a sometimes companion of end-of-day-exhaustion, comes from being comfortable, from the lack of danger and excitement that potential failure brings, because there can be no failure. It’s not inherently bad or evil or, even, weakness. It is a level of stagnation, an even keeled life with no ups and down. That doldrums, like that lack of a breeze against my creative sails, that lack of pressure to move forward and push my own horizons. And, just like that lack of breeze, I won’t be scared of it till I’m completely enveloped its clutches.
Sidebar: I can’t seem to stop using clichés but at least being aware of them is a good start, I would think, to trying to phase them out.
Complacency. The eternal patron for Fatalism and Futility. The ALWAYS rival of Knights of DIN [Do It Now].
It’s disturbing that such small thoughts can so easily dislodge my goals. Not at first, or even all at once, but piece by small piece until I look around and discover that all my work has been undone.
This slide is so subtle and ever-present I don’t notice its impact until it’s too late. Until we’re in so deep we can’t see our way out. Like growing your hair. You cut it short and then, one day, six months down the line, it’s midway down your back again. It’s always there, growing; you just don’t notice the difference until suddenly it’s there.
Unlike getting a haircut, I can’t just lop it all off. Unseating complacency, particularly the extended variety, is too daunting. I get buried under surging ignominious guilt and clarity of the monumental task before me. Instead of comprehending the enormity of my task, I should approach it like any other writing project; one bit of the whale at a time.
Maybe my tasks and goals are expanding more rapidly than I can accommodate. Maybe the burden of my debt is so vast I can’t reclaim that estate, even as it grows in magnitude and mass. I’ll never catch up.
But if I don’t try, then I’m just letting the complacency and despair win. I’m the rat that never stops eating, ever expanding. My aspirations disabled, like the brain’s “satiation center”. I don’t want that. That was one fat fucking rat.