I’ve found that when there’s the perfect balance between fear and desire amazing things happen.

The idea of writing everyday is something I’ve wanted for years, but to actually do it scares me. Or at least it use to. Now I’m excited. It worked out well.

The idea of presenting my folio to study design, when I had done virtually no art or design classes in high school, scared me. But the idea of being able to live in that world daily was exhilarating, so I had to go for it. It, too, worked out well.

Not everything that scares us is something we should do. I’m not about to go start milking spiders or anything. No way. You’re crazy if you think I will. No, no, no.

But I have no passion for such an insanely stupid (no offence to you professional spider milkers) thing.

I do have a passion for design and creative ideas. So I’m here, and this is the first of a series of scary things I have to do to reach the goal that I’m after.

That mix between passion and fear is an amazing indicator of what direction we should be going in.

When we love something, we make it perfect. In our minds we see none of its faults, calling them quirks or character that’s simply too charming to not love. We only see the good, smooth edges and exemplify them.

It’s possible to do this with an entire field, an entire profession, an entire craft.

Some people look at it as a whole and declare it wonderful and perfect and never go into it.

Some of us go into it and love certain aspects of it so damn much that we never touch them.

That bastard Resistance is good at setting us up. He’ll allow us to fall hard for something, loving it and understanding it.

But then when it comes time to actually do the work, he’ll remind us of how perfect it is, and how amateur we are, and how we shouldn’t be touching such a perfect, wonderful thing, lest we mark it with our greasy inexperienced fingers.

For the really unlucky, this feeling becomes all too common. Rarely is it known as Resistance. It’s often called respect. Someone respects a craft too much to go about messing with it, lessening it. They know exactly how good it can be, and have perfect taste so recognise well when it isn’t done perfectly, and so know that they couldn’t produce anything of worth, so produce nothing at all (hello 99% of YouTube comments!).

Somewhere along the line I was lucky enough to realise (read: my wife pointed it out to me), that its the scary things that are often worth doing.

Not everything fearful, of course. But things for which we hold a passion for in one hand, and fear for in the other.

We tell ourselves that the fear is a protection – we’re not going to allow anyone, even ourselves, ruin what we’re passionate about, what we love.

We think the passion comes first and the fear second.

But what if it were the other way around? What if we let the fear come first, or what it is that we fear doing, come first. What if we started on that which scared us, forgetting about how perfect things are meant to be, leaving the passion out?

We’re going to probably fail at whatever it is because we’re amateurs. We have high and refined respect and knowledge and taste, and yet poor skills. So we’ll fail.

And without the passion we’d stop there. But this is when the magic happens. Even if we fail, we can sprinkle a little passion onto the situation. Passion keeps us going. It’s fuel. If we’re reminded of how good something can be, if we’re reminded of how much better something that we’re doing can be, how much better something we’ve failed at can be, then allow the passion to reignite our wanting to make marks, then we can keep going.

Instead of allowing our passion to remind us of how far behind we are when we fail, we can better use it to remind us of what needs to be corrected and do so on our next attempt. Too often we use love for a craft as a reason to not practice it, should we defile its perfection.

Without the passion we stop and we’re dead in the water. With it we keep fighting, thrashing our way through the ocean, gouging the eyes out of any shark that might come our way.