It’s December again!? The last article I wrote that had a December date on it was almost a year ago. It was also the very first article I wrote for my website. I’ve now sat down to write my 50th article and I’m reflecting on what an amazing, humbling, stressful and enlightening journey it has been for me…
It has been a very interesting balance between being alone and being part of a family. By family, I refer to my readers. And it is a family that has grown over the last 12 months, much to my joy and amazement.
When I write I sometimes feel alone. Sometimes that is just the way I like it. At other times I’m faced with a blank page, a blank mind and the voice of procrastination calling at me like an old friend. It is resistance that I can reliably count on to keep me company for about the first half of every article. I’ve described the process of writing for me number of times like pushing a giant boulder up and over a hill. The first half is the sense of work and pushing through resistance. Then as I get to about the half-way point and most of the words are down on the screen the resistance eases off. Once the metaphorical boulder tips over the top of the hill it rolls down the other side. And so the rest of the article is relatively easy. To get to that point however, I must always first push the boulder up the hill. Every week. That has never changed since I began.
Sometimes that boulder seems really huge. On more than one occasion the resistance almost got the better of me. I discovered that it wouldn’t go unnoticed. I know of readers who follow my writing regularly and who notice when I’ve been a day late (I think it happens about once per month). If I’d felt alone at those times I may not have overcome the resistance. It was my family (of readers) who helped me. During one tough week, a reader commented on my article “you touch so many lives positively, and even though we don’t all make comments etc, we are reading and appreciating.” (Mary-Anne, if you’re reading this now, please know that you helped me sit down at my laptop the follow week to write again.) My gratitude for all my readers is, well, in this moment, literally difficult to put into words.
You all helped me learn so much about myself…
I learned that it really does get easier. While the resistance never went away, I learned through persisting every week with the task how to get faster at dealing with resistance and how to deal with it more effectively. I learned that I could rely on the boulder rolling down the other side of the hill if I first put in the effort to push it to around the half-way point.
I learned that not everyone will like my work and that won’t kill me.
I learned that lots of people will love my work.
I learned that people will take the time to assist me.
I learned that my articles can provide relevant reading material for clients who are dealing with related challenges.
I learned that stamina is doing small things on a regular basis and that is what creates big changes.
I learned that you don’t go after your dream to achieve your dream; rather, you go after it for the person that you have to become to achieve it.
I learned that it will never be perfect and to embrace “90% out the door is better than 100% in the drawer” in order to keep moving forward.
Mostly I learned, beyond all doubt, that I can do it. The consequence of that awareness is so interesting to me. On the one hand, the mind goes to a place of, “Well, if I could that, then what else could I do?” This is also my experience of how the minds of clients work as they achieve their goals. It’s a very human way of being and understanding that increases the awareness of the importance of continually setting and achieving goals, no matter how small.
On the other hand, there is actually some frustration in the thought that “I did all this work, and pushed through all of the resistance and kept going, and now my reward is that I have to set an even bigger goal??”
Meh, life is difficult.
And that is the beauty of it. So I offer a challenge for myself and all those who want in.
A pillow challenge for the New Year…
As I start thinking about what I want in the New Year, I invite all of you to do the same. I invite you to take some time every day for the next seven days to do a pillow test. To do this you take some time at the beginning and end of every day (or both) when your head is on the pillow and ask yourself:
- What did I do well this year? What am I proud of? Where did I push myself and how did I grow from that?
- What is my dream for myself?
- What goals can I put in place to move me closer to my dream?
- Where do I get in my own way? Where did I sabotage my own dreams over the last year?
- How would my life be different if I committed to making the necessary changes for my goals and began acting on them like my life depended on it?
Record your answers. Notice the fears that come up as you answer the questions, then let them go so that they don’t get in the way of your imagination. You don’t need to know the ‘how’ yet.