My two-month hiatus is done; now it’s time to get back on track with my Somedays. I have five months left of my 366 Somedays – 153 days and I’m struggling to decide which Somedays are worth my time, which call to my heart. Over the last two months, as I’ve eased back on my Somedays, I’ve thought about what I’ve done so far and what I still want to do. I have a list I made when I began this project, but already I’m questioning how many of these Somedays really warrant my time. I’m torn between activities I’ve always thought I wanted to do and the reality of a limited number of hours in the day. I’m finding this process both beneficial and discouraging: beneficial because I’m really working to identify my heart’s desires (Oh, my, I sound like Dorothy. Perhaps a pair of ruby slippers would help the process.) and discouraging because I’m having to admit some activities I thought were salient, don’t actually make the cut.
I haven’t yet decided what my August Someday will be. Check back tomorrow and, hopefully, I’ll have a worthy plan ready to hatch.
Month One’s goal was to write and publish a book in 30 days. Failed to finish, but still working on the book. It’s only a fail in terms of the timeframe.
Month Two’s goal is to develop a meditation practice. I am meditating every morning, but don’t seem to be getting any better at keeping my mind reigned in.
Month Three’s goal (next month) is to set off on a challenge to walk or run 1200 exercise miles in 2016. Thoughts on that? Total fear!
I’ve been sick for two weeks and other than a short one-mile walk with the dogs a week ago, I haven’t exercised at all. As the days pile up and I struggle to get through the basics of what has to be done each day, I’m beginning to feel a little panicky about the idea of trying to maintain an average four-mile/day, six days/week schedule starting January 1st. I wrote about “resistance” early on and I now know to identify this type of fear as simply resistance, but I must admit to feeling discouraged about the amount of fear I’m able to generate. I wake up in the morning with my head and chest congested, my body aching, and I think, What if I get sick after January 1st? How would I maintain my running/walking schedule? Two weeks of missed workouts is 48 missed miles!
Part of challenging myself to “366 Somedays” is the exploration of why we put off so many goals and desires to “someday”. There’s the excuses of lack of time, limited resources, other commitments, but I have realized perhaps the biggest reason, excuse, rationalization, whatever you want to call it, is FEAR. Fear of failing. Fear of embarrassment. Fear of “what if?” FEAR. I’ve also realized most of my FEAR comes from inside my head. I’m beginning to think perhaps the most substantial growth I’ll experience this year is learning to quiet the Voice of Fear inside my head. My goal can be summed up in a quote from Yanni: I don’t have a You Can’t Do This voice in my head.
My initial goal for the month of November, my first “someday”, and the WNFIN challenge, was to write and e-publish a non-fiction book in 30 days. Now, one week before the end of 30 days, I’ve revised my goal. Instead of getting the book all the way through publication, I am now aiming at completing the “Shitty First Draft”. This is quite a shortfall from where I had hoped to be, but I’m okay with the adjustment. Writing the book has been much more challenging than I expected. The length alone makes it a totally different type of writing style than what I have been accustomed to. Then there’s the storytelling aspect – again, quite different. I have gone from believing I’d write straight through from the Introduction to the final chapter, to writing a hodgepodge of ideas and stories that are only partly related to my initial outline. Hence, the Shitty First Draft.
In Bird by Bird Anne Lamont urges writers to embrace the shitty first draft claiming it can lead to clarity and even brilliance in the second and third drafts. Ernest Hemingway claimed, “The first draft of anything is shit.” Instead of letting my perfectionism and ego rule how I feel about the shortfall of my goal this first month, I’m going to look at this experience and know I’m in good company. However, I’m not going to say I’ll finish the book Someday – that would be counterintuitive to the point of my 366 Somedays challenge. Instead, I will commit that it will be done by Day 366 – hopefully significantly sooner. On to the second draft…
“Writing is an adventure.”
Day 4 of my “366 Somedays” and today was a reality hit. I’m sure there will be additional hits as the year goes by, but I didn’t really expect one this soon. Day 1 was exciting – I set-up my blog and Facebook pages, I announced my plan to the world, I received some great feedback. Day 2 I worked on the outline of the book I will write this month and the excitement from Day 1 lingered. Yesterday, Day 3, still felt pretty invigorating. Today, Day 4, I had a morning commitment which put me out of my routine. I normally write in the wee hours of the morning, but I couldn’t do that today because of the meeting. As I prepared to head out the door, I thought about what else I wanted to get done throughout the day: some bookkeeping needs for our business, prepare some packages for mailing, further work unpacking from our recent move. Then it hit me – I needed to make time to write! I’ve committed to writing a book in November. That won’t happen unless I … write!
So, even though it’s not 5:00 a.m., even though I’ve already had more coffee than should be allowed in one day, even though my little dogs are looking at me wondering why we haven’t yet gone on our walk, and even though this is not my normal writing routine, I WILL write!
Keep on reading, thinking, doing, and writing.