Apathetic or All Right?

Hello, Everyone! I hope all is well with each of you. I’m happy to share with you and unravel a string of coherent thought that came faster than expected — go figure on the latter.

Realizations.

So, I was up and out at the gym early Monday morning, and I saw someone that I’d just met on a prior visit. I spoke to her and was genuinely glad to see her. She asked me some questions, and I answered, short, sweet, and with a meaningful smile across my lips. It wasn’t until she began to volunteer information about herself that I realized I hadn’t asked her a thing about her experiences since last we spoke.

I had to wonder… was I becoming apathetic in a sense? Selfish? How often was I doing this? Hmmm…

After I hit the locker room, I jumped on the treadmill, popped in my ear buds, and began thinking about how I’m all for exchanging pleasantries, but was unaware I’d stopped furthering the conversation through inquiry about another’s wellbeing. Let me just say, those types of thoughts wreak havoc with a good jazz piece. I turned up the volume in an attempt to drown out the questions, and adjusted the setting on the treadmill for “hills.” Interestingly enough, the hill started on the decline, which was where my questions lodged themselves in my brain. The drowning out by pumping up the volume didn’t work. The questions got louder, and my mind ran off and played a riveting game of tag with each of them. Great.

The first question emerged. When exactly did I stop inquiring? Then the next showed up. Why did I stop? And, last but not least, is it as obvious to others as it is to me? Seeing that the woman volunteered her info seemed a clear answer to that, but I still had to ask myself. It didn’t even dawn on me to inquire past “fine, and you?” That’s when I realized that if I were a store, I would’ve been named “Speak-N-Go.”

I wasn’t unpleasant, just ready to get on with my day.

That particular morning, it took a great deal to muster up the motivation to get up and out in the first place. I’d played tug-o-war with my workout pants, then there was something dirty on my clean shirt, my hair wanted to embody the image of “Heat Miser,” and — well, you get the point. So needless to say, I’d given myself an imaginary “you did it” badge after my feet made it through the gym doors. I was on a mission, I’d felt a fleeting burst of “go,” after my clothes and hair fiasco, and I had to catch it before procrastination plopped down on my lap, leaned back, and crossed its legs. So freakin’ typical. My thoughts continued, and the incline started.

 I came to the conclusion that I genuinely care about people…

So, I ruled out being selfish, because I’m always concerned if something’s wrong with someone and do my best to help if possible. It was more like I was worn out, in every sense of the word, and was grasping onto on to every bit of energy (kinetic and potential) I could because I needed every ounce to do whatever it was I was doing at the given moment. No exaggeration, I was spent. I knew it was going to be all right though, because I asked God for a recharge.

Sometimes, I’m just tired… plain and simple.

My brain gets full. It’s not like I’ve had all that much to say anyway, at least, not lately. On the other hand, I think a lot, pray a lot, observe a lot, and stay aware of what’s going on even in my non-talkativeness. When I’m in that mode, I like to believe I’m getting that much needed recharge I asked God for, and in the process, God is keeping me from saying something that I would, most likely, have to repent for immediately after lip-lift-off because, beneath my smile, I’m often short on patience.

Hello… Ava? Girl. Nothing’s wrong!

Now, my mind led me to believe that something else was going on within myself and attempted to plaster me with guilt stickers from head to toe when, in reality, nothing was wrong. The person I felt I’d slighted was smiling from across the gym and had probably thought nothing more about the whole encounter I’d pulled apart like a bulk package of string cheese.

Why did I do that to myself, and what was I worried about?

 Nine times out of ten, I was being hard on myself — again. Oddly enough, it comes with caring about people and about what people may, or might, think. I have this thing about wanting to leave people happy even when I’m not. I am a person who likes to show kindness, and when I feel I’ve been less than friendly, I pull out the personal boxing gloves and shadow-box, which is totally unnecessary and makes my arms tired.

There are times I just don’t have anything to say though, and do I have to? Last I checked I wasn’t 411, and I’m not one to talk just to hear myself talk!

So, grabbing the ole’ mind shovel and a swig of water, I investigated my lack of inquiry a bit further. Why? Because letting go seems to be an issue for me most times. While digging, I hit pay dirt. Several of my life experiences came to the surface, which spelled out (in all caps) that while people are indeed wonderful, all people take energy and life force whether they’re wonderful or not. It’s also true that while some individuals are encouraging, others are certified siphons — whether intentional or not, and this girl right here (insert my brown face in this space) has had a plethora of siphons in her life, and me thinks it’s come to a head, so naturally, my “T.M.I.” guard flies up. Decline.

I’m fresh out of woo-saaah today. Please check back on I’ll-let-you-know-day at I-don’t-know-o’clock. Thanks!

Now, just to be clear, in no way was the wonderful woman I spoke to negative or a siphon, but through her, and people like her, I’ve discovered that my pleasantry reserve is close to depleted and doesn’t play favorites. The result? No one’s exempt from my lack of how-do-you-do-ness, but I make sure I’m at least pleasant and give a smile… or two.

I smile, smile, smile, while I recharge. Umm… God, did I mention I needed a recharge?

Finally, back to the treadmill’s version of an incline, I came to the conclusion that it’s all right to be basic sometimes. It’s all part of the human experience. I’m not expected to pop into the gym in a pair of gold-glitter workout pants, and toss flower petals around from a be-dazzled, light-up, flower basket. There are times where there’s just nothing to do but arrive at a destination, say hello, nod, and smile. And, guess what? If that’s all a person has to give at the moment, that’s enough — no beating-of-self required. Besides, I don’t think there’s a single person, on this earth, who’s a walking “happy conversation box” twenty-four seven. I haven’t seen it, and… um — I really don’t want to!

Everything I’d thought about that day funneled into a realization — though sometimes I may feel less-than-sociable, I still believe it’s important to be kind. Kindness matters, it’s not selfish, and it costs nothing to be associated with and even less to give. That being said, I’m attentive and take time to listen when an individual volunteers information. If a word of encouragement is in order I give it to the best of what God has given me to give with all of my heart. So, I guess I’m not too far gone. I’ve also found that listening has little to do with the listener talking — and sometimes that’s all a person really wants, a listening ear.

Bottom line. Maybe I’m not apathetic after all. Maybe I just didn’t inquire because I was busy on a task of my own. May-haps, I did nothing wrong and needed to realize this through deep introspection… Hmmm. Ding.

After many more inclines, declines, and assorted body tortures, I left the gym with both a workout of the body and of the mind. I packed it up, smiled, nodded, and waved on the way out. I felt better overall, even though I was certain my legs were going to kick my butt gangsta style later.

Gotta love those realizations!

Thank you for reading, and be encouraged! Take care of yourself, and no shadow-boxing! Feel free to leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you!

 

 

 

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I Came Up for Air…

I Came Up For Air… Really. I did.

So, after a reasonably long hiatus, I am back, and I missed you. I missed sharing with you and writing about things whether random or pertinent. To be honest, I was off learning lessons, because let’s face it, a person needs to know a little something before they go off on a writing tangent about whatever the subject is.

Plain and simple, I was doing too much. Things were running a tedious, vain circle in my brain that was making me too dizzy to focus on a designated direction. I went toe-to-toe with a bit of depression and draped over quite a few pieces of furniture. That being said, it was a necessary task to gain focus and learn more about things like acceptance, relevance, insignificance, values, worth, and that all encompassing phrase, “let it go…” all of which I will expand on at a later date. For now, I just want to say, hello and thank you for waiting and for reading. I truly appreciate your support, but before I sign off, I would like to share one thing I realized about myself: I never gave myself a break — on anything.

I have two very close girlfriends, Pam and Kim, whom I call sisters, because simply yet thoroughly, they are, and I love them. They are both hard-working, amazing, talented, productive women, and I have a saying when it seems like they are doing too much, which goes a little something like, “Slow down! You know your Super Girl cape is in the cleaners, you can’t go flying off with a dish towel pinned around your neck, it ain’t gonna work, gurl!” This ends up with a few laughs, but it’s so true, and it usually means I’m worried that they are running themselves down.

I’m pretty good at giving words of encouragement and showing support, but I also realized I never really did it for myself, which raised the question, “Wait… don’t I love me?” Not only was my cape in the cleaners, but my dish towel had worn out, I got stuck with the pin, and I was running around with a piece of toilet paper wrapped around my neck with the ends flying behind me — and was it even two-ply? Catch the visual? If you did, you realize my Super Girl “run-jump” must have ended in a “fall-splat.” You are correct, hence the hiatus.

So, I guess what I’m saying is that it’s all right to love you. It’s all right to take a break and take stock of self. It’s all right to not have an answer for everything someone asks you, besides — who on earth does? It’s all right to not try to do everything, and it’s absolutely imperative to take time to pray, listen, and just breathe. There’s a lot of peace in that, and honestly, who doesn’t need peace?

So, until the next string of coherent thought, I’m signing off. If you have any comments, please, drop them below. I would love to hear from you! Have a wonderful day, and thanks again for reading!

 

 

 

A Tiny Rant…

Okay. Maybe it’s a medium-sized rant.

Some people are full of opinions and not just opinions, but ideas, assumptions (good and bad), comments, compliments, and conclusions and are quick to impart whatever entitlement moves them to impart. Quick to prove a state-of-being, or ill-conceived thought, through the judgment of an action, usually visually inaccurate, yet still expressed with what they consider to be heartfelt conviction.

There was a time when assumptions meant little more than just that, and people weren’t all that quick to jump to conclusions without some sort of proof whether preconceived or otherwise.

Although all conclusions weren’t gospel truth, some people took the initiative to find out a bit more about whatever the subject was — minus those who reveled in ignorance and blind prejudice.

Today, we live in a society that needs very little proof of anything and runs like the wind with any halfway-sort-of-almost piece of posted news deemed gossip worthy. This practice has produced a crowd of bitter, spiteful, trolling individuals with very few, if any, redeeming qualities.

I’m not preaching. I’m not judging. I’m just aware, and I’m observing.

It seems the senseless are overshadowing those with sense. Sense. Remember? It was that stuff that mama whooped our butts for when we acted like we didn’t have any, and even if we lost it again, it wasn’t anywhere in the near future. Oh, and we didn’t die from it, we learned from it.

I wonder though, has learning has taken a backseat to knowing-it-all? I certainly hope not, because knowing-it-all actually means a person knows nothing yet pretends to have flawless knowledge on whatever the subject may be. There’s always more to learn. There’s always more to comprehend. I’m sure some will drape over the last few statements, but those who think they know-it-all usually do. Don’t flog the messenger, I’m just sayin’.

Looking at everything, I believe that thinking before speaking, researching before spreading the word, and just plain shutting up sometimes are all good ideas, but those bulbs seem to be busted with very few willing to go to the store for new ones. As a result, there’s a bunch of bare-footed individuals standing in the middle of shattered glass in the form of ill-spoken words.

Okay. Wooo-saaah. End rant.

In all the crazy, there is a remnant though. God ALWAYS has a remnant. This, I remember. So, in the midst of all the nonsense, distraction, and Tomfoolery I go to the cure — God, and if He asks me to do something I might not want to do at a given moment, like shut-up for instance, I’ll do it anyway. He knows best! Fact.

I Learn Something New Everyday…

I never realized just how much an Internet-powered device affected my mood until I called an online game I played a “lyin’-sack-a-cheatin’-wonder.” My husband looked up from what he was doing. He smirked and said, “You should write that down. You know you’ll use that somewhere.” So, I did. He knows me well. God bless him.

Though the whole thing was pretty amusing, it made me think. It also made me wonder how an inanimate object, which I had the ability to turn on and off, mind you, could evoke such a strong emotion in me. Why was it possible, and what was the real deal?

Welcome to my wake up call…

I don’t know about you, but I play my little games when I’m taking a break from doing some big time, serious adulting. It’s not that adults don’t play games, quite the contrary. It’s just that, most times, the adulting I’m doing has the potential to send me head-to-feet hopping across a frozen lake Daffy Duck style — so, I wind it down a bit. So, winding down, I did.

Now, the fact that I called the little game a lyin’-sack-a-cheatin’-wonder let’s me know I truly was in another world and had, involuntarily, visited the frozen lake anyway. I thought about it a bit further and discovered I was using the game, vicariously, to accomplish something in my reality. Then, when I felt cheated after feverishly switching smiling, colorful emojis (within a time restraint) to gain the coveted treasure chest to no avail, out flew the words with a derogatory tone to boot. It really wasn’t that serious… or was it?

Here’s where it got kind of real…

As relating to the game — no, but if I look at the bigger picture behind why I was playing the game then, yes. I had to ask myself, how many times has that very feeling overwhelmed me in real life, and what or whom did I take it out on? First, let me extend a heartfelt apology to my wonderful, patient husband whom I know has been the bewildered whom on more than one occasion. God bless him.

Second, let me clear the game of any wrongdoing; it was not the game’s fault. My mindset, on the other hand, was a little wonky, which caused my wind-it-down to turn into a reflection of how I viewed things in my immediate reality. I had the issue. How do I know this? Well, after I slandered my game, I took the attitude of “It’s hard enough in real life. Can’t I, at least, have a break in a game?” Umm… that is not a wind down. That is the reiteration of a thought process blurred and taken out on an innocent group of smiling emojis. Dag-to-the-nab-it.

Even though this Internet connected, device-laden world has the ability to temporarily take me away from what ails me it is not the cure-all for what ails me, yet I was using it like a technological bandage. Oh, and it didn’t work. It landed me in front of my computer spelling the whole scenario out on a set of Qwerty keyboard keys. Yes, another electronic child of technology.

But… I had to ask myself, does the whole Internet connected thing take me away from what ails me, or does it disguise it and dig into the ailment deeper?

As far as mapping out pressing thoughts within a document goes, the Internet technological thingy-ma-do helps in researching the ailment, which can lead to the diminishing of said ailment — but as far as slandering emojis in a game goes, sadly, the ailment has already deepened, and the disguise is faulty. Whew! One issue solved.

So, what to do?

I do not have all of the answers, but I am searching them out and think I deserve a box of cookies, well, because I like cookies, and (at least) I’m aware there is an issue to resolve. What I can say for certain though is that the situation stated in the first paragraph of this post made me face a few things I wanted to keep tucked in my back pocket. With reluctance and excuses I have now pulled them out and am working on them, so stay tuned.

I’ve also come to the conclusion that the Internet and technology are not the enemies. In fact, they are useful, wonderful, and progressive and have the ability to throw a person into an alternate reality all his or her own. I mean, who doesn’t want to slap on a pair of puppy ears and a flowered crown every once in a while? No, I cannot be mad at the portable get-aways, otherwise known as, technological advances.

On the other hand, real life is real life, and things in real life must be dealt with realistically. Sometimes, more than a little bit of introspection is needed, or some extensive research within one’s purpose and goals. It also takes patience, determination, and no small amount of motivation. Especially when things are looking crazier than a group of crazy straws at a crazy straw convention.

For me, the absolute best thing to do, in all of this, is to have a heart-to-heart with Jesus, listen to what He has to say about it all, and act accordingly afterwards. And, although I know there is a great chance I will slander a few more games it won’t be because I’m taking my frustrations with reality out on them, but because they really did cheat… it happens, you know.

Smile a lot and enjoy life because it is there for the living! Be encouraged.

Thank you for reading, Whether I Want to or Not, I Learn Something New Everyday! 

Ramblings of a Thought-Provoked Writer

Sometimes, I sit down in front of my computer and search through the gargantuan assortment of words that populate my brain only to find that not one of them connects with what I want to say. It’s a full-out word conspiracy that threatens the very fibers of my word-craving being. Okay. I admit it. I have a flair for the dramatic. Guilty as charged. Slap on the construction paper cuffs.

But seriously, does that whole words-escape-me-though-I-know-a-million-of-them thing happen to you? I am confident that I’m not the only one. I get a glimpse of the far corner of a bright idea and a heck-a-bunch of motivation to breathe life into the whole thing — and then I sit there. Blinking at the screen, fingers on the keys as I type, type, delete. Where in the who-ha did my idea go?

I’ve come to the conclusion that sometimes, it’s just not all there yet. God hasn’t given the rest of it. Therefore, waiting is the thing to do, and I’m cool with that. My patience, on the other hand, informs me that waiting is inconvenient and decides to take an extended vacation at that exact time. Yip. P.

So, what to do? Lament? Drape? Wear a paper dictionary as a hat? I think not.

I find going to the next thing on my list usually does the trick. As soon as I move away from my computer, close my notebook, and prepare to do something else — I get a fantabulous idea. Am I the only one this happens to? I don’t believe I am.

Anyway, I’ll have my hands immersed in soapy dishwater, or something to that effect, and a great, inspired sentence will go through my brain. Bingo! I suds-palm my forehead, as I fling water across the room. I repeat the coveted sentence over and over in my head while I scramble for a dishtowel and trip over my shoes on the way to my computer. With newly dried hands and a suds-free forehead, I sit down at the computer only to find that the whole idea thingy has changed into something else entirely. Or has it?

No. It hasn’t changed. I’m doing too much, and the problem is that I am a habitual editor and have picked the sweet little idea apart all the way over to my computer. Bad habit. How bad? Well, I catch myself editing my text messages before I send them. (Oh, and I’ve edited this sentence about four times already. Time for me to wooo-saaah!)

Now don’t get me wrong, editing is a good, but while it is good, there is such a thing as too much of a good thing. I had to face the fact that sometimes, what is being said the way it’s being said is the way it should be said. Bam. Proper grammar and punctuation is a writer’s must, but I’ve got to admit that there have been times that I grammar-obsessed and punctuated myself out of a really great story. Lesson learned.

Yes, the lesson was learned, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to start writing all willy-nilly. It just means I will give what I am writing a chance to breathe before I cold-cock it with a comma, or suffocate it with a semicolon. I’m just sayin’…

All of this might seem ridiculous in nature, but I’m sharing my experience to make a point. Be patient. It is okay to take a break, and it is okay to give yourself a break. I had to tell myself that even though I am a writer, it really is okay to not have anything to say sometimes. Sometimes, I just need to chill. Think. Pray. Meditate. Finish the dishes! It will come when it comes!

Enjoy your creativity, and make sure to let it breathe before it runs out of breath!

Thanks for reading the ramblings of a thought-provoked writer. Have a great one!

Life Lessons…

Sometimes, the line between success and failure is the one the person draws his or her self. I can recall many times walking down my life path scraping an invisible, topless, life-sized Sharpie across the ground in front of me like a long-lost appendage. At the time, I didn’t realize what I was doing, but I was doing it nonetheless.

Unintentionally, I allowed other people to draw along with me. These were individuals who voluntarily latched on with hidden agendas and nothing to offer but an abundance of mouth, which never rendered anything useful in regard to wellbeing, growth as an individual, or reaching a designated point in life. But, there they were in mine; steady drawing. They drew conclusions, and they drew from my resources and attempted to draw the curtain on my accomplishments, which drew my last decent nerve to the point of fragility. The end result displayed on the canvas was beyond butt-ugly.

So, there I was struggling not to go postal amidst struggling through things like value, worth, ability, and love-ability with, what seemed like, an ever-present thickening dark line in front of me tripping me up like it got paid to do so. I was so tired and expedient in getting nowhere. I almost stopped. I say almost because I’m here today writing about a few yesterdays.

So, back to this thing called success, what is it exactly? I believe success is the ability to maintain focus, and move forward in a positive direction despite obstacles, barriers, and circumstance in order to achieve a desired goal, and fulfill a God-given purpose.

Now, unless that definition includes an escalator that works backwards, I had no such thing going on, but there was no reason in the world I should have been in the destitute condition I was in. No. There were actually four reasons: disobedience, bad choices, abuse, and toxic acquaintances. In other words, I fell for the okey-doke.

What is the okey-doke? Glad you asked. Well, there is healthy okey-doke, and there is unhealthy okey-doke. I am referring to the latter. There are also many definitions, but I will elaborate on one. It is the acceptance of all the negativity and false pretense a person or person(s) can feed you when he or she opens their mouth. Sure, it’s a neat and nasty trick for the one dishing it out but a definite success-choking device for the “slight-of-the-tongue” recipient. So, what’s the deal when the one dishing and recipient are one in the same? I mean I was the one who was drawing, right? Yep, I was.

That’s one of the most interesting things about unhealthy okey-doke; it can be self-inflicted, and self-inflicted okey-doke is the worst. Believe me, I know. It can be a hard habit to break, but it can be done. Where does it all start? Well, it has to start somewhere, and it has to be conditioned in order to become a believable, pressing issue. That being said, I am not going to leave the consummate opportunist out of this less than appealing scenario. A skilled opportunist can turn positive energy, drive, and motivation into a negative, steaming pile of what-in-the-heck faster than you can blink. How do I know? Experience was my teacher, and I didn’t miss a class.

That type of junk can and will do its best to demotivate an individual bit by bit. It is a drain that siphons desire into a vat of discouragement. Eventually, I began to question myself. I questioned my goals and my ability to accomplish what those goals were. As a matter of fact, I didn’t want to do anything anymore. I began to fail myself, and any type of success in life became a laughable myth.

My issue moved full speed ahead when I gave attention to and fed into less than favorable experiences and allowed individuals into my life that did nothing but berate me with a smile. I took ill-spoken words to heart, and I allowed negative thoughts to form, deepen, and dictate to me who I thought I was, and it festered. In other words, I entertained other’s lies until they became my truth. Sounds bad? It is. No person should be given that much power. After all, isn’t God the one who molds the clay?

“But now, O Lord, thou art our father; we are the clay, and thou our potter; and we are all the work of thy hand.” Isaiah 64:8

Okay. So, how, why, and when did I allow those with ill intent to get their grubby-little, non-molding fingers on me? How? Self degradation. Why? Because I thought I deserved it. When? When I believed the lie. Oops. My bad. God never called me to any of that.

Nothing was good about my situation except for the fact that, I didn’t have to give into it. Say what? I was still holding tight to my Sharpie though. I had been given the choice to drop it, but I held onto it. It took me quite a while to grasp the concept that I wasn’t born for the beat-down. I had to do a whole bunch of letting go and letting God, but it finally clicked. So, I made the choice to drop it, and follow The Lord. Now, to realize something is one thing, but to act on the realization, and choose to change is something altogether different. Not only is it something different; it’s a hard something different — especially when you’ve become accustomed to the okey-doke.

It has been said, and I quote, “…anything you do for more than twenty-one days becomes habit.” Definition for me; my butt wasn’t just in a sling it was in a ‘sho nuff’ sling that somebody had taken the liberty to decorate.

I put a lot of time into a bunch of bad habits, and flipping the script was going to be like driving a Chevy Vega, in reverse, through mud five-feet deep. I had a lot of work ahead of me, but the bright side of it all was that I only had to make the choice to move forward, and I didn’t have to do it alone. I couldn’t anyway; was a God thing. I knew He was with me, and He was the only one who could flip the script to the exact page I needed, but would I listen? (Insert Jeopardy music here.)

I did listen, and it was the best choice I ever made, and yes, God flipped the script, which brings me back around to the beginning of this post. God never drew that line in front of me in the first place. He kept me through it all. His divine circle of protection is, and was, much different than my hand-drawn line of spiritual defection. I was the one who drew that line and allowed others to join in. The line was thick. The line was definite, but God showed me that it was not permanent. Yes, God’s mercy and grace are much greater than Sharpie power; I mean come on, there’s absolutely no comparison!

So, instead of just dropping it, I gave up the Sharpie cold turkey. I separated myself from those toxic to my wellbeing, revoked their Sharpie privileges, and I prayed. I prayed hard, long, and often. I prayed for guidance, obedience, wisdom, patience, and motivation. Then, I put some feet on my prayers and moved forward in my purpose, and I still do. Things are not always easy, and they did not turn into rainbows and butterflies after I made my choice, but the journey is guided and positive, and the push is worthwhile and full of successful, God-given purpose. I am truly blessed.

At times, I still struggle — but who doesn’t? The struggle is real, and I believe it is safe to say a very human thing. Besides, wounds heal, but some scars stay forever. I’ve made the choice to remember my scars as lessons, put the lessons in my success belt, and move forward toward my goals. What about you?

“I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:14

Thank you for reading! Smiles, success, and serenity to you!

Focus. Sprint. Focus!

Steer clear of those people and things that draw your attention away from your God-given purpose. This day and age, there are many things that act as lures and what dangles on the end, most likely, doesn’t sparkle and has nothing to do with what you need for your present journey. They’re just heavy, head-turning distractions pulling against your progress.

This is not to imply that you shouldn’t care about what may be going on around you, very much the contrary. It is to say don’t lose focus on what you need to be doing in the midst of it all, because in the long run, what you may be doing may be the kinetic solution to the problems you see brewing around you.

So, don’t let situations (walking or otherwise) stop your flow, demotivate you, or cause you to backpedal. Instead, be motivated and encouraged to do what is for you to do, and the rest will fall into place. Some things just work out like that, and a backed-up progress pile-up is never pretty.

Have a beautiful, productive day! Love, peace, and elbow grease!

Extracting lessons from the past. Moving forward in the present. Motivated about the future.

Writer Realities…

Speaking from a heck-a-bunch of experience, I have sat in front of my computer and placed an inspiration-infused notebook beside it and an important-looking pen directly on top of the notebook. My glasses propped, just so, on the tip of my nose but only far enough to still look cool in case of web-cam intrusion. I secure my headphones on my ears and crank up the smooth jazz instrumentals to a comfortable, non-distracting volume. I am ready. I am so ready.

Three hours later…

Yes! The desired result is that I have written the beginning of a riveting piece of work that is so good the angels sing as I spin around the room with my computer in my outstretched arms like Belle dancing with Beast.

Okay. NOT.

I said that was the desired result. The real deal is that my glasses are not only crooked but have slid down below my chin. Not cool. I have called my important-looking pen a “stupid writing thingy” and have scribbled a few choice words with it across my now inspiration-confused notebook. The smooth jazz instrumentals have turned into a bunch of noisy sounds, and my computer has grown a personality with which it has decided to scoff at my fingers each time I switch a word in my one, halfway decent paragraph. Dang-it-to-cheese. So, what now?

What now? What now? Do it again — that’s what.

The reality and life of a writer is certainly one of revisiting what was once considered a previously thought-out, great idea and then digging through the imagination for those silver-lined, platinum-plated words and descriptions that you didn’t find for your first draft — and probably won’t find until after your seventh.

A writer’s life is not one of wimp-filled antics. Sure, there’s a little crying and draping over various pieces of furniture at times, but there’s no quitting. If you are serious about honing your craft and successfully engaging your target audience, giving up is never an option. You might feel like doing the big give up thing — but don’t. (Oh, and growling at the screen solves nothing, I tried it. So, save your throat, and let the project breathe a minute while you hyperventilate into a paper bag.)

Save what you have. Close your computer, and walk away for a few hours or even days, but have at it again. Don’t rush it. Wait for it. Creativity has a way of creeping up and poking you in the head with fabulous ideas when you least expect it. Be prepared.

Yes. It takes a lot of patience, research, creativity, and determination to do the writing thing with success, but it can be done. You might call your favorite pen a few choice names in the process but in my experience, I find pens to be quite forgiving.

Happy writing, be encouraged, and thank you for reading!