I love a challenge. I particularly love writing challenges. I recently finished the Blogathon (31 days of posting blogs) and started Camp Nano (writing 50,000 words in a month.) I am always searching for new challenges. When my friend Jan (simply jan blog ) shared one with me I signed up immediately.
But this challenge was different. It wasn’t a challenge to write a certain number of words or post on a particular subject. This one made you think and act. The first assignment was to “Declare Yourself a Writer” to someone or something that would be difficult for you. I wrote about that in a blog post. Yesterday we were to get up two hours early and write. At least this one wasn’t quite as shocking as the first. I don’t do early. I tried it and decided that late afternoon and nights were my best time to write. The point is to commit to writing. Today’s challenge is:
Choose yourself. Stop jumping up and pleading, “Pick me, pick me, pick me!” and look yourself in the mirror and say: “You. I pick you.”
What’s something you’re questioning about yourself? For some, it will be the simple choice to actually call yourself a writer (but I hope we’ve overcome that by now). Then, I want you to start something you’re scared of.
Oddly enough, everywhere I turn I am being asked questions just like this one. I am part of a life coaching group and the question we are dealing with this month is ‘What Gets In Your Way?” And yet in another adventure in my life we are looking at the way we think about ourselves becoming our reality. I have some new “blogging” friends who are asking the same questions and sharing these same ideas.
I know what I need to start and I know what I question about myself. I also know what gets in my way. I am “what” gets in my way. Negative self-image and negative self talk is pervasive in my life. My commitment to my life coaching group is to be aware of and stop all negative self talk. I made that commitment at 8:00pm last night and at 4:45am this morning, I was deep into negative thinking and had to stop myself. It is going to be a challenging week.
What I question about myself when it comes to writing is definitely something that gets in my way. I question my ability to write. I know I can write words on paper or computer and put together a story. I believe anyone can do that. The question is whether I do it well. Will people want to read what I write? Will people be touched in some way? Or will readers ask, “Does she really think this is good? What was she thinking?” I question what people will think about my writing. Actually, I question what people will think about me in every aspect of my life.
What I need to start is the book I have played around with for three years. I have written bits and pieces and then put them away. I have created titles and chapters only to discard them. I can write a blog without blinking an eye. I can write a fiction piece or a short story. Yet the one thing I know and believe in my heart is that I am supposed to write this story. Friends and people I don’t know who have read some of my blogs ask “When are you going to write this story?” and “Why haven’t you done it yet?” The reality is I am scared.
I am scared of what my family will think. I am afraid of what my friends will say. I am frightened by the response of strangers. I am afraid that I will write my story and no one will care or I won’t be believed. So I asked myself today if I am writing this story because I want and need to write it or am I doing it for others. The truth is it is a bit of both.
I tell everyone I plan to have this finished by the end of the year. I tell everyone I am working on it. I made a promise to my friend before she died and to someone else important in my life that I would write this. So today I will start-Really start. I will move out of my comfort zone. I am going to pull out everything I have in my carefully hidden folder in the Cloud and begin. Challenge accepted.