I have been struggling with a major writing project for several months now. I have grand ideas, goals, and intentions to write regularly. So what happens? I’ve stumbled over several obstacles and interestingly, they all seem to be in my mind. I just can’t seem to get started, or in this situation, restarted. I find excuses, other things distract me, and pretty soon the day is gone. Here are the most obvious issues I have had.
I don’t schedule it. I just assume there will be time and space in my day to write. As my friend, Melissa Stacey, a professional organizer says, “anything you want to get done needs a home on your calendar.”
I feel guilty for not having more discipline, not being farther along, or I think I’m lazy. Plus, I’m easily distracted.
I have those self-doubts and “who do I think I am?” thoughts. It’s my mean girl. We all have that mean girl in our head who tells us we’re not good enough, smart enough, don’t know enough. God, I wish she’s move out of my head and out of my life!
Ok, so now I’ve identified a few of my stumbling blocks which gives me loads of writing ideas already. Actually writing them out really takes their power away for me.
I had scheduled writing a blog post for this morning so check that one off. That worked, thank you very much Melissa! I sat down and started right where I am right now.
I temporarily eliminated my distractions, i.e. my iPhone is in the next room.
I simply acknowledged my guilt was there and moved on quickly. Guilt and a sense of not being enough has always been in my DNA, it’s part of being Cherryll. I’ve owned it, and once I did, it no longer owns me. It’s just a small part of who I am. Like the birthmark I have on my left arm, it’s there but it doesn’t define me. I’m learning simply to acknowledge what shows up for me, especially those self-deprecating thoughts and feelings and move on.
I’ve always believed that action dissipates fear, so why wouldn’t it dissolve guilt and self-doubt and other potentially paralyzing thoughts. We are enough right now. We’re still here aren’t we?
To get started, I suggest….
Begin here and now. Wherever you are this moment—not where you were or where you think you ought to be. If it’s a project, simply start doing something that will move your ahead right now. Don’t spend hours getting ready, planning or diagramming it out.
If a project or goal feels overwhelming and you don’t have all the answers for the entire project, break it down into manageable 15 minute segments. Focus and eliminate all distractions for 15 minutes…yes you can do that!
You don’t need all the answers now. I’ve found the resources, energy and what you will need will show up along the way with focus and consistent action in the direction of your goals. I start out knowing I have all I need for the first 15 minutes, which often becomes much longer.
Schedule the next activity on your calendar. You’ve now started! Let me know how this worked for you.