i've always assumed that i've been immune to the disease of doubt and in the moments that it struck, i had a quick and dirty solution that worked for me every single time. jump! it didn't always land in victory and often in pain.
the danger of doubt
i always visualise doubt in my mind as the Prince of Persia pausing before he takes the leap across the chasm. doubt distracts from the vision of the goal, the girl, the gold, the glory on the other side of the chasm and instead magnifies the sharp, long, spikes yearning for blood at the bottom of the deep and dark chasm.
and this isn't something that strikes you only in the beginning levels of the game. whether you're a newbie or a seasoned player, doubt can creep in unceremoniously and uninvited. jump! no! don't jump...
doubt seeks to impede the movement of life by paralysing you at the edge of the chasm, forcing you to stare deep into the dark depths instead of the rainbow in the sky ahead.
doubt puzzles the mind and paralyses body into forgetting it's capabilities, inherent traits and virtues. if it were to be distilled into a toxin, the venom producing creatures of our wondrous planet would be left to shame. doubt doesn't need a pair of venom injecting fangs to deliver it's dubious payload.
it can materialise out of thin air and create confusion where once there was clarity. words can be wielded by enemies to spread doubt, but even more efficient and deadly are one’s own thoughts that arise from within. these can scramble a perfectly tuned mind into falling apart like a house of cards.
are you playing the game?
like any adventurer worth his salt, the Prince believes in the journey and hence he perseveres. is it because it's a game and he can easily reset and start again? of course he’s not aware that he’s a character in a video game but when i play the game, that certainly explains my heroism as i control his daring moves across dangerous territory.
but, as mortals in this game of life, the challenge is as dangerous as an array of dangerous spikes in the chasm. the glory is as real as it can get and that makes the doubt deviously real too. sometimes to make that leap, you might have to retreat a few steps to gain the momentum you need.
at other times, a blind leap based on external guidance may be prudent. a cleverly crafted rope thrown and secured across the chasm might be better, even at the cost of lost time. the solutions may vary, but what is important is that movement never stops.
look and leap
the moment you make a decision to move forward, you set into motion a chain of events that conspire to bring you victory against the devil of doubt. in the beginning you may sweat when confronted by this creature from the dark.
but once you advance as a diligent player in this precious game of life, you will welcome the ominous presence as an opportunity to rise and catapult yourself to a level far beyond. a single step ahead in your journey can feel like a leap as a quixotic adventurer.
the journey of life is a mighty adventure waiting to unfold and unravel the mysteries that lie ahead. when faced with a chasm, what are you going to do - cringe in fear or crouch in preparation for the leap?
If you hear a voice within you say you cannot paint, then by all means paint and that voice will be silenced.
Vincent Van Gogh