Previous: I Was a Child Poet. And a Bad One.
Next: Great at Being Terrible: The Florence Foster Jenkins Story



View count:557,609
Last sync:2023-01-25 01:00
In which Hank discusses why life is so terrifying, and why that's OK.

Oh, and also, we're playing Carnegie Hall:

So Charlie made this video
Which prompted these people to make these videos:
Michael Aranda

Which prompted me to make this video

And then the comments on that video made me want to make the video above.

This is especially weird because this is very similar to a video I made on HanksChannel, though spruced up for Vlogbrothers. But the real point I want to make is that making things is terrifying, and making our selves is the most terrifying creation of all, and we have to do it every single time we meet new people, which is why that's scary. But it's OK for it to be scary, because that's how you know something's worthwhile.

Also, the other point is...we're all scared. I proved it...


Shirts and Stuff:
Hank's Music:
John's Books:


Hank's Twitter:
Hank's Facebook:
Hank's tumblr:

John's Twitter:
John's Facebook:
John's tumblr:


Other Channels
Crash Course:
Hank's Channel:
Truth or Fail:



A Bunny
( - -)
((') (')
Hank: Good morning, John. I'd like to make a quick logical argument. Two postulates, followed by a conclusion. Postulate 1: Creating is terrifying. Postulate 2: Everyone creates. Logical conclusion then, being that everyone is terrified. It's actually not creating that's terrifying, it's, it's sharing the creation, or even the thought of sharing the creation that's terrifying. Because once your creation is in front of another person, you have lost all power. You've gone from a situation in which you have maximum amount of power over this thing that you have made to no power. You have nothing. That's not true actually, you have all of your hopes and dreams and values and aspirations and days or weeks or months or years of work that you've poured into this thing that you're now sharing with the world and the world has every right to despise. So yeah, terrifying, right? Now, on to the second postulate, that all people are creators. And now we've sort of been set up to believe that this isn't necessarily the case, that we live in a world where Steve Jobs makes an iPod and we buy an iPod, but that's not how the world is, even if you have no way of physically creating a thing, you create ideas and you create jokes and you create friendships, and then, you have the creation that matters most to all of us, and that is the scariest and most dangerous and most intimate and most beautiful creation that everybody gets to make, you only get to make one of them, and that's the self. This is why I totally hate it when people give the advice to just be yourself, because like, who is that? Because we aren't born with a self, we create ourselves. You make you. You make you out of the books that you read and the expectations of culture and the interactions with your friends and your family and a million other factors, and because the self is this terrible, intense creation, the most important creation that we all make, when someone tells you that they don't like that thing, that's terrible. Which is why talking to a stranger is always scary, like, to me anyway, I don't know, I feel like everybody must feel like this to some extent, because when you talk to a new person, you are making you inside of them, and you don't want to do a bad job. And that's why we all fear judgment so much, because judgment is just someone creating you inside of their head without your permission, without full knowledge of who you are, they're making you, but they're making you improperly. It's terrifying. Absolutely terrifying. And there are a few ways that I've found to make it less terrifying. You can create the bare minimum of creation, you can not try very hard, that's good. You can, you can be really bland, you can just create really bland things that look like everything else that everyone else has ever created, or you can create things that you don't care about at all. Or for people who you don't care about. Or you can just never, ever share the things that you create. And of course, all of these strategies are terrible ways to live. It's terrible to see people doing this with their creations, but the most terrible creation to see people do this with is their selves. Trying to be boring, trying to look like everyone else, or worse, not trying at all. Which has led me to the belief that you know as a creator how worthwhile your creation is by how terrified you are. I've only ever found one solution to this, which is just to create, to create in spite of fear and to create constantly. To create for children and adults and your parents and your idols and your peers and your community and to consciously be creating yourself, every day, to make you the you that you feel best inside of, and create friendships, because I honestly believe that friends are the commodity by which we should all be judged. The only way that I've found to temper the fear of creation is just to create, constantly. Because to be clear, the fear doesn't go away, you just get more comfortable in it. John, I'll see you on Tuesday. (endscreen) (Hank blows out candles)