I am already trying to balance the busyness of life and the desire to find a creative outlet for everything I want to say. I’ve gone from feeling like i have nothing to write about to suddenly having too many ideas floating around in my head and not knowing where to start and stop. I’ve wanted to spend an entire day just writing, but when it came down to it, I didn’t have the time. Or, more accurately, I didn’t make the time. I’m still in that mindset where I feel like I have to work my writing time around the rest of the stuff on my schedule: Work, cleaning the house, never-ending laundry, cleaning, One Girl, and more. Writing is still that thing that I did when I had a spare few moments and had enough energy to create a coherent thought. It still isn’t the thing I make time for instead of doing other things.
But, I’m slowly learning that I need to do just that. I need to spend some serious time committed to my dream. As it turns out, no one can put the hours in but me. No one can string the words together but me. No one can find the passion but me. No one can make the sacrifices but me.
It’s a strange, new world for me. I am not a person who likes to take time for myself and do things for myself. I am a giver, not a taker. And, this #500Words experience is making me do just that. And, it’s freeing and terrifying at the same time. There is still some guilt that comes with doing writing instead of doing the list of other things I could be doing (notice I said could instead of should. That in and of itself is a huge improvement). There is still a feeling of the time spent doing this doesn’t have purpose and value like other things do. I am working through those mental blocks, but it’s taking some time.
Luckily, I have some great tools at my disposal to help me! For Christmas, Tim bought me two awesome books; Ready, Set, Novel and 652 Things to Write About. Both are designed to stir creative juices and make you think and prepare in a different way. I also have the great Facebook group dedicated to this challenge, awesome writer friends who are succeeding at their dreams, and more.
Yes, it’s hard for me to let my creative heart loose when my schedule is so busy. It means giving up some of the things I already do, changing my schedule and saying YES to earlier alarm clocks and bedtimes. It means that I have to take the time to trust that the process is long and can be painful. It means accepting that the first draft won’t be publication-worthy, but still has value.
I knew this month would be a growing experience for me as a writer; I’m not sure I knew just how much until I started thinking through this post and what being a writer looks like when I add it to the roles I already play; employee, friend, wife, sister, daughter, leader…and so many more.