There are few things that feel as good as coming up with a new idea for something to write. Suddenly, there is planning to be done. Research. Vision boards. Mindless doodling. Facebook stalking. Netflix binging. Multiple semi-drafted posts that ultimately need to be condensed into one, but otherwise get ignored because, well, something has been written and that’s progress, right? In fact, it’s so much fun anticipating the possibilities of what we’re about to write that sometimes the writing never gets done. And sometimes…it doesn’t even get started. We can rest assured knowing we had an idea – until we realize something has kept us from bringing it to fruition. And what is that? It’s the comfort of not knowing. The fear of completion. And the probability that we won’t do it justice if we try.
So instead, we write a post like this one. And then we wait.
You see, lately I’ve been chock full of ideas. Nothing much beyond Ideas. Inspiration. Thoughts. Quandaries…Like the women I met at the Colony’s most recent goal setting retreat, all older and more experienced than I, but so full of passion and beauty that I can’t even begin to describe. Or the writer-in-residence with a hitchhiking past who also resided in France for a year and met an adorable French farmer who kissed and named his goats as he milked them. Cheesy romance novel plots I meant to start a month ago. Old journals that need to be read and documented in some kind of story still waiting to be told. Craft projects. Recipes. Goals. Intentions. Clarity. Sanity. Soul.
This January, my mind is running so fast I can’t focus on one single thing. But it’s not quite “Writer’s Block”….it’s more like a traffic jam full of identical Prius’ that I’m finding it harder and harder to distinguish from one another. And instead of recognizing myself as the one driver holding everyone else up and figuring what I can do to fix it, I’m walking away looking up at the trees, the flashing lights, and–ooh! A squirrel!
They say that when we’re afraid to look inward, we look outward instead. We start scrolling through Instagram. We go wandering through Target. We obsess over laundry and dishes. We drive a half hour away to walk around in circles and get some exercise. We’re even happy to have to clean an oven filled with years of oil and muck.
None of these are entirely bad or unproductive things. But they are distractions. And what we really need to do…is what we’re actually anticipating. Because if we allow ourselves to anticipate it for too long, we’ll lose the moment. Or we’ll build it up to be a complete letdown.
The best and hardest thing for me to do is have a daily ritual. I’ve tried meditating in the mornings before work. I’ve tried going to the gym every Monday/Wednesday/Friday. I’ve even tried daily protein shakes and the occasional knitting project. But usually, I let life get in the way.
I like to be open to the unknown, but that makes it hard to commit to a clock. Because what I choose to anticipate is distraction – friends who want to go for a hike, last-minute dinner plans, shopping, or just cleaning up all the clutter I’ve accumulated whilst I’ve been otherwise distracted.
But now that I’ve really gotten to thinking about it, I realize that what I don’t make time to do…is write. Sitting down and getting real with me – Just Me – is rarely prioritized. And that’s the most important ritual that I could have. I mean, as a writer and all.
Meditating, working out, smoothies – those are all very nice ideas. And they work well for me every once in a while. But what pains me more than anything is the fact that I don’t allow myself to be a writer. Because I’d rather anticipate it. I’d rather daydream about the perfect post and accumulate journals and prepare my writing bag.
I’d rather think about how great it will be to be a writer one day….when I should be owning it right this very moment.
So now that I’ve got this 2 AM idea out of my head, it’s time to get to it. It’s time to ASPIRE. No resolution-quitting for this gal!
But here’s the trick: I’m going to need something from you, first.
I need to know what you want to hear. Do you have a favorite post that’s stuck out to you from before? Do you have something you know about me that you wish I’d talk about more often? Is there something you know about me that I’ve haven’t yet recognized myself? Are you still confused about what “A Necessary Rebrand” even means? Would you rather Webb get back on here and talk more about cars?
I want y’all to be an active audience. I want y’all to feel comfortable here. I want y’all to enjoy this blog and learn something from it. And seriously, I want some honest opinions.
In the meantime, I’ll be working on differentiating all those silly Prius’ and getting them out of that jam. Cause I’m tired of all that honking, and the flashing lights are making it hard to think.