Because when impossible perfectionism strikes, the way to get back to being productive is to do something - anything - that gets momentum going, then rechannel it.
The road was empty tonight as I drove through the suburbs of Michigan City towards dinner. The street was lined with houses, then with a park on one side and an industrial complex on the other, and then the trees suddenly gave way to a lake, wide and shining with ships, with a sunset way out on one end, pierced by a lighthouse held to the pier by a spindly little walkway.
My jaw dropped. I stopped the car (remember, empty road) and pulled the windows down; a mighty gale came ripping through it. So I stashed the car in the empty Coast Guard parking lot nearby and ran for 15 minutes up and down along the dock, leaping puddles and skidding to a stop with a sharp intake of breath every time I passed a Large Object and got to see even more of the sky. Abandoned fishing lines flapped their sinkers against empty flagpoles; the wind whipped through and sent giant cumulus clouds drawn in soft pastel off at a good clip over my head.
I pulled off my jacket and sprinted until I started to reach the point of not being able to breathe, then walked back towards the car, gasping for oxygen, clutching a huge stitch in my side, and happy. Happy! It doesn't take that much to make me happy; a sunset and boats and a strong wind and the impulsive chance to run myself out of breath. (Speaking of which, I really need to sprint more; I really shouldn't run out of breath so fast.)
Seriously, I'm just really happy these days. I need to keep my head and not get cocky about it, and make sure that I pull back and rechannel towards the stuff I should be focused on - I need to use this feeling of abundance well, because it is a gift I've been given for I-don't-know-how-long, and it's my responsibility to be a good steward of that (and I'm not always). And someday I may not want to be the person-equivalent of an exclamation point surrounded by a lot of asterisks and underscores (I mean, I can't imagine why, but it's a possibility; I hear sometimes this happens when you Get Older). But boy, it sure feels good now. And I'm going to run with that.