Tue
1
Feb '11

Day 124

photo credit: luigi diamanti

124 days into my #6monthchallenge, I open a Facebook message from a long-time reader and super supporter that read:

Post, baby, post.

I had to chuckle.

Because today I was seriously contemplating shutting down the blog to do…I don’t know what.

I’ve learned a lot over the past 124 days, but the biggest thing is…

(drum roll, please)

I don’t take my writing seriously.

I don’t have any writing “ritual.”
I don’t set aside any specific time to write.
I don’t have any *special* place to write.
I don’t have any compelling reasons to write.

I write because I have something to say.

Or most accurately, because something inside of me needs to be voiced.

And when I don’t have anything to say,  writing becomes a chore.

(One more thing on my list of “want-to-but-never-get-around-to-doing-it-right”.)

So the question that begs to be answered is, “What does writing RIGHT look like?”

I find myself, far too often, worried about this.

About getting it RIGHT.

WTF?

Seriously, it’s MY writing.

Others may judge it, love it, criticize or celebrate it, but it’s up to me to decide that MY writing is RIGHT for ME.

So when the hell are you going to get around to that, Lisa?

“Now” would be the appropriate answer, yes?

But it isn’t honest.

‘Cause I’m not ready.

Or maybe I’m more ready than I believe.

In that brief admission, it dawned on me that my writing is RIGHT when it’s honest.

When I acknowledge what I am feeling.

When I write that I’m…

scared
lost
confused
furious
elated
sad
empty
hopeful

…maybe that’s enough to make it RIGHT.

For me.

***

Enough.

There it is again.

Will it ever be enough?

Only I can decide

Today it is.

Enough.

***

124 days into this challenge, I realize that the only measuring stick that matters is the one I hold.

Or the one I decide to put down.

124 days into this challenge, I can accept that my writing is right.

Now.

It’s time to trust it.

#######

What are you willing to accept today that you didn’t see 124 days ago?

17 Comments »

17 Responses to “Day 124”

  1. Alisha Says:

    Really beautiful. I also have toyed with the idea of shutting down my blog. Perhaps having such a public avenue for my writing has created too much pressure for me. All the words I write seem so forced–even in my private journal. Thank you for sharing this with me.

    Today I am willing to accept that path toward my dreams is going to be loopy, full of forks, dead ends, red lights and yield signs. But that it is okay, because it's all part of the journey.

  2. LisaMilesBrady Says:

    Damn, Alisha. You really know how to bring it.:)

    "Today I am willing to accept that path toward my dreams is going to be loopy, full of forks, dead ends, red lights and yield signs. But that it is okay, because it's all part of the journey."

    I love your willingness to accept the journey as it unfolds. What a huge gift to give yourself. THAT, my friend, is beautiful.

    xo

  3. Carol Hess Says:

    Lisa and Alisha — When you're doing a blog, especially a personal one, you are exposing yourself to judgment every single day. That is not a small thing to do. In fact, every time you write a post and push the publish button, you are performing an act of courage. So of course it goes through your mind to give up your blog. Who in their right mind would expose themselves and their writing to judgment day after day after day to the whole freakin' world? Well, you. That's who. Whether you're in your right mind or not is a debate you can hold with yourself.

    (To be continued . . . .)

  4. Carol Hess Says:

    But, as Lisa has discovered, the most critical, sneakiest, meanest, most unfair voice of judgment is your own. Could your writing be better? Sure. Could you be a more disciplined writer? Sure. Could you dig deeper and tell a more truthful truth? Sure. Could your writing be "righter"? Sure. That's because "right" in writing is a moving target. Just when you are about to reach out and grasp it in your hot little writer's hand, it edges away. You grab at it again, and it moves away again.

    You're never going to be 100% satisfied with your writing. But you are going to like your writing more and more. And you are going to be gentler with yourself about it. Or, of course, you can always give up writing. But I think it's too late. You're hooked. You've got writer's ink in your blood. You have no choice but to keep writing. The alternative is too painful and not who you are.

  5. LisaMilesBrady Says:

    And this is why you are the best writing coach…EVAH! 🙂

    Thank you for helping me remember the "courage" in all of this. Hitting "publish" is no longer a sheer act of will but a deliberate decision on my part to stop hiding. Of course some part of me will be threaten by that and will always try to keep me "safe."

    It is also so helpful to know that the critic will never be 100% satisfied. As long as I am not satisfied with my writing, I'll have room to grow. Which is why I came to this circus, isn't it?

    Thank you, Carol.

    xo

  6. Alisha Says:

    Thank you. That is so true. I didn't really think of my resistance in this way, but it is dead on. I often forget that I am my own worst critic. I will never be 100% satisfied, but I will learn to love it for what it is. And you're right: there's no way I could really give it up. Thank you for the encouragement.

  7. LisaMilesBrady Says:

    Su-weet! Love that realization. Thanks for sharing.

    And thanks for cheering me on, Pam.

    xo

  8. Lisa Miles Brady Says:

    Day 124 http://bit.ly/gHjDS1 #6monthchallenge

  9. TexInTheCity Says:

    Whoo to the blogging hoo! I am so glad to see you posting again.

    You rock my blogging world,
    Tex

  10. LisaMilesBrady Says:

    HA! You do keep me on my toes, Ms. Tex. 🙂

    Thank YOU!

    xo

  11. susan Says:

    Damn that "enough" – should be a four letter word anyway 🙂 Love you, ADORE reading your blog and the introspection that ALWAYS follows. The world needs your voice Lisa … contemplate it all you want, but don't ever go silent. Please.

    Besides, I'm with Carol – you're hooked.

    My 124 day acceptance? I'll get back to you on that 🙂

  12. LisaMilesBrady Says:

    Given our last convo, I hope it's along the lines of how much you REALLY matter 🙂

    Thank you for the love & support, Susan.

    xo

  13. Alana Says:

    Your honesty is enough for me. Lovely to read your words here again – I'm glad you're back. Fabulous back and forth in the comments too – gotta love when you inspire that 🙂
    My recent post Connected

  14. Sally G. Says:

    Hi Lisa! I can really relate to your sentiments in this post.

    I do not consider myself a Writer ~ I am one who likes to write, yes — but I am not a Writer.

    I, too, lack the discipline – and quite honestly, the passion and drive that seems to surge through those who wear the Writer badge with pride and honour.

    I write when I feel something I 'know' needs to be shared. And when that happens – the words simply flow from fingertips to screen in relatively little time. I tend to never complete blogging series (like reverb10) because I can't always 'feel' the prompts shared and my writing feels forced and stale.

    I have accepted that I am someone who likes to write vs a Writer – and have yet to truly identify the I AM statement that would define a clear direction of travel.

    In the meantime though ~ I can say with conviction that I am DEFINITELY a reader of meaningful blog posts – and it's always a pleasure to know that you produce those in abundance. Thank you …

  15. Lori I Paquette Says:

    RT @sally_g: I can ALWAYS count on @LisaMilesBrady to speak to my heart & spirit w/ honesty -> Day 124 | Lisa Unmasked http://bit.ly/dOGAf0

  16. SouthernGirl2 Says:

    Good Morning, Lisa!

    You're awesome, lady! 🙂

  17. Shelly Says:

    Time to trust…. I love that Lisa! I too have been hemming and hawing about writing… I feel I’m not doing it right either, so I end up not doing it at all… If I don’t have a schedule, if I don’t have a plan, if I don’t have the perfect place, time and frame of mind, then it won’t be right – so I might as well not do it right? Ummmm…. No! Now just to turn off the editor in my head, and let myself just w.r.i.t.e 🙂