|By Yesterdaywastomorrow (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons|
When something doesn't go the way I want it to, I get cross and cranky.
When I set goals and don't meet them, I feel ashamed. And disappointed. And sad.
And then cross and cranky.
My last post was a bit of a grumble. It was also an attempt to understand why on earth I just couldn't sit down and WRITE MY NOVEL!
I didn't get any clear answers about that while I was writing the post.
I did feel better for getting things off my chest, although I'm not sure my words would inspire anybody reading them! And even though I'm tempted to delete it, I won't. It's a benchmark of where I was last week.
However, despite feeling cross and cranky, not once did it cross my mind - although I'm not sure I conveyed this in the post - to give up on my writing. The post wasn't about giving up, it was more of a lament for the non-achievement of writing goals.
Today, I have a few ideas about that.
"My name is Lisa and I suffer from Comparison-itis."
I read other blogs, and I celebrate the achievements of other writers because I am genuinely delighted with their successes. I have some insight into the lengthy journey and hard work that goes into finishing a project and then revising it. Then there's the beta readers, the editors, the cover designers, the formatting, and sending it off to be published/sold.
Once the celebrating is over, though, I sit back and look at what I'm doing. Or not doing.
Won't say any more.
A Change of Mindset
Firstly, I need to change my mindset. Slow down. Notice what's going on, notice how I'm feeling. Accept it. Don't try to change it. Don't try to "fix" it. Don't struggle to overcome it. They're all pointless and even though this M.O. used to work when I was younger, I'm finding it counterproductive now. The more I resist something, the more it persists and fights for acknowledgement. As time goes on, it gets harder and harder to overcome something I've been ignoring for a long time.
What works now - and I tried this today - is to sit with whatever is going on. Just be with it. Don't judge it. Don't ignore it. Resisting an emotion means it gets "stuck" instead of flowing through and away. Whereas if I accept it, it eventually moves on all by itself.
(So, from now on, even if I don't meet my goals, for example, I'm just going to sit with that and let it be. No More Grumbling!
Secondly, setting a goal at the start of the week and then expecting it to remain set in stone for the next seven days, without taking into account what's happening day to day, just isn't working for me. That's why I'm going to do the following experiment:
- Retire to my writing room in the evening
- Be still. Connect to my Heart
- And set my writing goal for the following day. Not the whole week. Just the following day.
That way it's not my mind telling me what I need to do. I'm being guided by the "still small voice within" which is the whole idea behind this blog, and the foundation for how I want to live my life.
Let's see how that works.
Shorter Pieces of Writing
Shan's comment on my last post reminded me - and I'm rolling my eyes that I needed reminding yet again! - that I do write every day. I wrote every day in my journal last week. In terms of fiction, I'm mulling over the idea of writing something shorter than a novel, e.g. flash fiction, a short story, a poem, a verse of a song, something like that.
That doesn't mean I've given up on my novel. I still have to do that exercise where I find out where writing this novel fits into my life. I'm looking forward to that. :)
Goals for next week
- Keep writing in my journal
- Set a writing goal each evening for the following day
- Make time for those goals each day
- Comment on my team's ROW80 blogs
And make sure to check out the other ROW80 blogs.