Tuesday, May 24, 2011
Determining What is Best for You
Maybe. I had music on my iPod, just not in the best order. Two hours. I'm an organizational guru, often known to make lists. Then I got to thinking...which can take me on tangents into the universe, if I'm not careful. So I sat down to blog about this, to stay on point.
Many things are good for us. Spending time with friends and family, for instance. But where do you draw the line? When do you say you have to go?
Cooking a good meal takes time. Do you capitalize that time and reward your family with a marvelous five-course meal or short-cut it for your writing deadlines? You can feel the guilt creep in.
Which birthday parties do you miss? How any miles do you run for your health? How many hours do you spend in the garden or on the sofa watching a movie with your spouse? There's nothing bad about any of these activitites. All are good for you...and others.
You have an endless list of competition for your time. It's a perpetual guilt trip.
Define the axis around which your world is supposed to spin. No, you can't be all things for all people. You can't perfect yourself in all activities. Cast some aside. Define those you want to be remembered for. Shorten the time you spend on others. Downright neglect some things.
Because otherwise, you neglect your writing.
You know how dieters will note everything they eat for a week then analyze it? Determining what is needed, what is fattening, what was eaten purely out of boredom? Note every hour of every day for a week. How much did you write? What hours did you spend doing something you really didn't have to do? Tally.
With a wise eye, with a mature and open-minded viewpoint, decide what you spent time doing that really didn't mean squat to the universe.
Every day you make choices what to accomplish and what to put off. Chances are, your writing is in the latter category. Simply swap it with another task. Neglect something else.
One day you'll look back. You'll see all those precious moments spent dusting, watching American Idol, and eating seconds. The times you gossipped too long, cleaned unnecessarily, and Facebooked beyond reason. And you'll wish you'd written.
When writing is put off until everything else is done, you become known for everything else. You're not a runner until you put in the miles, build the legs, and run races. Even if that means leaving the bed unmade so you can run at dawn.