Write To Keep Your Word (To Yourself)
Even when you would rather do anything else.
There will always be a reason not to write.
Tonight, while trying to write, I instead:
- Combed my hair
- Posted photos on my IG story
- Thought about whether I should make a salad for tomorrow.
- Closed and opened tabs on the browser.
- Watered the plants.
- Cleaned the dirt under the plants.
- Felt guilty for not writing.
- Felt anxious because I felt guilty.
So why (why?), why write?
Because I said I would.
Because some part of me that decided: I want to write. I need to write. I will write. I’m going to write books! And poems and prose, and all sorts of stories!
Oh, what a delicious feeling it is - the rush of excitement and the energy when inspiration hits.
But beneath the enthusiasm and ambition, there is the pure drive to write. This drive comes from some part of me that I know and need to honor. Maybe you recognize that same voice within yourself.
Writing is a Practice
There is no way around it. If you want to write, if it is something you care about, then you must do it — consistently.
Like the athlete, the musician, the actor, and the professional hula-hooper, your your work is a skill you must hone and develop. It doesn’t matter what mood you are in, or how many items are on your to-do list.
Your Practice is a commitment you are making to yourself, that says:
I choose to mark (x) as a priority. This means I will show up for it in (y) way.
This could mean you dedicate a certain amount of time per week to writing, or use word goals to keep yourself moving forward. It could be keeping to a deadline that you’ve chosen, or showing your work to a friend.
This is my Practice
I haven’t written here for a very long time, which isn’t to say I haven’t been writing.
But tonight I would like to mark this as a practice I would like to take on again. 25 minutes of writing a day. This is a commitment I am choosing, and now I plan to honor my word.
My pitfalls include:
- Thinking I need to write for a publication for it to be ‘real’
- Thinking it needs to be a certain type of article
- Thinking it needs to be read and liked (though a girl can hope).
Pretty much, my pitfall is over-thinking.
But practice is about doing.
Do it to do it.
And then come back, and do it again.