This week marks the second half of 2018, so I’m hitting the reset button. I know — I’ve said that before — but this time I really mean it. Largely because the first half of 2018 sucked. If I want the second half of the year to be better, I need to do some serious recalibration.
What I’ve realized is that over the past year or so, I’ve allowed outside events to erode my mindset. I focused on the many demands eating my time rather than focusing on how to make my new reality work for me. In other words, I slipped into martyr mode, and what happens when you’re in martyr mode is that you tend to find more ways to be a martyr. Because nothing keeps a pity party going like more self-pity.
Problem was, by continually catering my pity party, I was destroying a vital part of myself. I’m one of those writers who needs to write. Yes, writing is a business for me, but writing is also what feeds my soul. I would write even if I didn’t make money at it.
Except, for the past year, I’ve been writing less and less. Writing took a back seat to other priorities. Which meant, my soul took a backseat to other priorities.
During my walk this morning, I listened to a great podcast on self confidence and one of the opening lines struck a chord deep inside me. The speaker noted that we are often less firm about commitments we make to ourselves than we are regarding commitments we make to others. For example, none of us would blow off picking up a child at the airport to go get groceries, but we might blow off the hour we scheduled to write for the task.
How often did I blow off a commitment to myself and my writing these past couple years out of guilt or for some task my mind deemed “more important”? A lot.
That, I realized, is because I tiny part of me doesn’t believe I deserve to take time off for writing. Somewhere deep inside me is a voice that says “You’ll never finish”, “You’ll do it wrong”, “You’re Being Selfish” , “or my newest favorite, “You Don’t Have What It Takes to Be A Truly Smart, Successful Author; It’s Just A Pipe Dream.” I don’t have to actually hear the voice — nor does it have to be speaking the truth. My subconscious will still react.
Now, combine the voice with martyrdom and BOOM! You’ve got a whole bunch of unproductivity and misery.
So, today I’m hitting reset. I’m going to fight those voices and I’m going to guard my writing time. I started by telling the vacationing Captain Pete what hours I would be available to play this week, and what hours I would be working. My goal is to start treating myself and my goals seriously again, and to believe in my dreams.
How about you? Do you need a mid-year reset? Let’s start together.