march 1st, 2014 - day 15292

i need work. i don't just mean i require employment (although that, too, is clearly evident); my life demands considerable improvement effort. yesterday (on a gig for which I am very grateful) i opened my eyes wide to the realization that, in a matter of seven years, i have lost my place as the first resort and secured a well-deserved position as the last. my skills as a musician have faltered. for years, i strove forward, then stood still for a time, and now i slide ever-faster backward. i have become old and feeble. i have settled into life as a dilettante and a fraud, and i have nobody to blame but myself.

worse still, i am finding it difficult to motivate myself to change. i know that the power to improve rests in my own hands, that, with a little daily effort, i could make great strides over time. i'm just not sure i want to try any more. i have taste enough to recognize that the world contains both brilliance and mediocrity, and that what i have to offer right now is far closer to the latter. greatness is reserved for braver souls, those who cannot accept less and so strive constantly for more. i have readily accepted so much worse than this world deserves, and i have scorned mediocrity while unwittingly producing it myself all along. now, i have a choice before me: do nothing and accept my appalling status quo; make the effort to move forward again, knowing it might take decades before i see significant progress; or give up entirely and take a different road. today, i feel too tired to choose, but sleep gives neither relief nor clarity. i listen for guidance, but am met with dizzying silence, ringing in my ears. and the world continues to demand so much, oblivious to how little i have left. all i know for certain is that atlas desperately needs a holiday. if i set the world down, will i ever find the strength to lift it back onto my shoulders again?