Sometimes when I write, I feel the gravitational pull of the rest of my life – laundry, emptying the dishwasher, oh then the quick email response I need to dash off TODAY, and even going to the gym. It’s not just the chores that beckon me — there’s the friend I have been meaning to call for a giddy conversation or that book that I’m dying to read. The shoulds and the shiny things are distracting.
My writing practice has grown and changed dramatically over the last few months and even though “Make,” BlogHer’s NaBloPoMo daily blogging theme for this month, is a nod to DIY projects, cooking, and other builds, it’s also an opportunity to talk about this moment I’m in with my writing and a few other things. I’m honoring the spirit, not the letter, of the assignment. It’s okay to laugh, sometimes I giggle about it, especially since I’ve made a life based on that.
I have a shouldy, sparkly life and do my best to ignore it and keep working. And that’s a decision. Sometimes, I have to put down my pencil, take a deep breath, and ask myself to decide. It goes something like this, “Writing is your life’s work. Is <name of distraction> more important?”
Because, really, that’s the decision I need to make in that moment.
Unplugging, going within, being in my work – those are decisions too. And takes me away from the other possibilities of my time. Those are the ones I make over and over, sometimes minute by minute, hour by hour, eventually become my pages, revisions, and finished projects.
So I invite you to make a decision that cuts you off from other possibilities. Even for just a moment. It could be big or small about your routine, your life, anything really. Even what to eat for dinner, none of this, “Oh, whatever sounds good.” Decisions are like push-ups. They’re a good idea, we know we should do them, but…I know. I hear you. But lots of little decisions can add up. They can make us strong.
But for now, just make one.