The light brown suede couch and the not-so quiet of the night used to be my office. I had no cubicle buddy to share daily struggles of procrastination with, I had no lunch buddy to eat a salad with, I had no chisme girl talk about the dude in the mail room who’s hanging out with the chick from accounting, I had no receptionist transferring my calls, I had no elevator ride up to the 10th floor, I had no White Out or colored post-its in my desk drawer, I had no parking space to fight over, I had no work buddies giving me a pep talk.
I had a light brown suede couch and my inner voice trying to shut down all the real voices who kept telling … why don’t you just get a real job?
I had myself. That’s it. Myself, a feel-good song playlist, and some Ben & Jerry’s.
That was my office.
As writers our offices generally involve suede couches and pajamas. And a lot of doubt.
We get it from ourselves and we get it from people who are supposed to believe in us. Voices are constantly murmuring, resurfacing, and trying to break through that wall we are constantly rebuilding … confidence.
They make this uphill climb an even bigger battle.
But I realized that I have plenty of insecurities … motherhood, career, culinary skills, body images. Doubt always creeps in, but along with all that doubt, I’ve got to have confidence. Any dreamer has got to have more confidence than doubt, on average, otherwise it’s just not gonna happen.
You’ve got to walk on out there like you’re Andre Agassi. He had so much confidence that when he won the coin toss or whatever it is they use to decipher the tennis serve-receive position he was like I’m on defense. Defense! Can you believe that? He was banking on his skills as a defender to win points. He was like give me the best you’ve got, it’s not getting passed me. I’ve got you.
That was him. Agassi was so confident in his game, so confident, that he let them serve. He gave them what people thought was the advantage. But no … it wasn’t. Not with Agassi, defense was his advantage, he could pick up whatever they dished out and break them.
And as dreamers that’s what we’ve got to do. You’ve got doubt, insecurities. Sure. We do. We got people who magnify them, too, people who aren’t cheerleaders in the stands but constant hecklers in your life, jabbing you at any chance they get.
But you can’t fall down that way. Even if you don’t have a desk, an assistant, a corner office, or a fax machine. Even if your office has a tan suede couch and you show up in your Costco sweatpants …
You’ve got to show up like Agassi on the court and be like … I got this.