Yesterday I heard Elizabeth Gilbert who is the author of Big Magic: Creative Living Without Fear and other books share on her podcast Magic Lessons this idea that only a few people who run a marathon are winners. And there are others who finish the race and those who don’t finish it.
Those who don’t finish tend to look down on themselves. And society of course doesn’t help here. They call them quitters.
But, Elizabeth continued, majority of people don’t even start. So those who did not finish are actually ahead of them.
It’s so true in creating art, too.
If you are frustrated with yourself that you tend to start various projects and not finish them, know that most people don’t even begin creating either because of fear of failure or fear of success. That’s why true artists are so hard to find.
I started but not finished practicing many things, including writing diary, swimming, running, Navy SEAL’s workout, fugal improvisation, playing euphonium, drums and violin and reading many books so I know how you feel. I probably quit because they didn’t matter to me that much.
But I’m glad I’m continuing to practice a few things now that are important to me. And by trying many different things I’m finally finding a few that stick.
It’s better not to finish than not to start at all.