I find it slightly comical that I am about to share how much I love writing. I have loved it since I learned to put pencil to paper and some of my most highly prized childhood possessions are the stories I wrote in grade school. Yet ask my editor, and she will tell you that I have been rather delinquent this year in submitting my posts on time. Why is this?
I’m busy, distracted, and tired.
One thing I have learned about myself as a planner, an optimist, and an Enneagram four is that I am often not grounded in reality when it comes to what I can accomplish in a day. I’m a homeschooling mom of three, I work in a logistical position at my church, and I suffer from anxiety and depression. At one point, I was homeschooling by day and waiting tables by night, but still wondering why I was always running on empty. I would plan to journal, write a blog post, or start a story and then be pulled away by my dirty dishes, work responsibilities, or mindless television. Sitting down to write after such a full day just seems too daunting of a task.
I think we all have something that makes us come to life. Writing allows me to get my unfiltered thoughts out of my head and onto paper. It’s how I process and it’s my favorite form of self-expression. My hesitancy to start often comes from not knowing how or where to. I know I have things to say, but how? Who is my audience? Is writing still an art form if no one reads it? Can I still be a good writer without a rich, descriptive vocabulary? Can I still be a writer if it doesn’t move someone else?
A Passion Pursuit
Usually, when I write, it’s because I’ve been inspired. Something has taken place that has caused me to feel or think so deeply that I am compelled to record it. Often a good book will make me think and then move me to write down how it has taught me or stirred me. But sometimes writing is an inspiration unto itself. Sitting down to do it makes me want to do it more.
What Makes You Come Alive?
I’ll close with a short excerpt from a book that is currently inspiring me.
“But I also tell them that sometimes when my writer friends are working, they feel better and more alive than they do at any other time. And sometimes when they are writing well, they are living up to something. It is as if the right words, the true words, were already inside them, and they just want to help them get out. Writing this way is a little like milking a cow: the milk is so rich and delicious, and the cow is so glad you did it.” (Lamott, Anne, Bird by Bird).
Reading Bird by Bird has encouraged me to make more time for my passion for writing; to forego another episode of my favorite show; to put down my phone and create from the best, worst, and most interesting parts of myself. Your passion may not be writing, but I think everyone has a place they thrive in. How can you commit to coming more alive?