I have clearly had too much time on my hands this week (I’m not complaining, as it has coincided with the start of Wimbledon). When work goes quiet, I have been known to descend into a mini existential crisis (okay, every time work goes quiet). It always fascinates me how much our work defines us, structures us, even keeps us glued together. Is this because it distracts us from the bigger thinking? Or simply because it pays the mortgage?
Anyway, yesterday afternoon I was trying (and failing) to blog, trying (and failing) to decide which training course to do next (Editing fiction? Academic referencing?) and trying to decide which animal rescue needs an Angel grant most urgently (from www.thesanctuaryangels.com), all while wishing I were as accomplished as the next editor and that my arms were as muscly and tanned and able to hit a killer forehand (or just get the ball in the court) as the Wimbledon youngsters (they look so young). I went to sleep feeling less than perfect and vowing to do better tomorrow.
This morning, catching up with the news, I read that Fiona Phillips has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in her very early sixties. And more articles about climate change and how we are not doing anything like enough to reach net zero. Stories of hardship and suffering and people trying to make ends meet. More natural disasters. And then a desperate request for help to put food in the mouths of starving animals. You get the picture.
And then it hit me. Life is short (in the context of the universe and our place in history). Life is tough (for some more than others). And life is uncertain. None of us knows what could happen next year, next week, even later today. We have this moment, this time in our lives, this life in our body. And if we don’t embrace it, then it is going to pass us by in a haze of worry, self-doubt and fear of never being good enough (FONBGE).
So, I’ve written that blog (my usual eclectic mix of therapy and editing talk), I’m signing up to that academic referencing course today, I’m going to wire money over to those hungry animals, and I’m going to dance like no one is watching (cardio dancing, which is the best medicine and perfect for getting out of my head and into my body after a day at my desk).
It’s ironic really that I called my business Perfect Words by Amanda George. I don’t actually believe we can – or should – strive for perfection in anything. How about we just aim to be the very best version of ourselves (VBVOO) that we can be, which translates (in editing terms) into making a document look its very best, respecting the author’s voice, making them feel good about their writing skills, and offering kind tips on where they can make improvements.
There's no time for FONBGE! Grab that moment and go find that VBVOO!