Starting today, July 1st, I am prepared to recommit to sharing my writing each weekday. As I have written in the past, it feels like a piece of me is missing when I do not share my thoughts, even if no one opens my emails, even is no one visits the blog. There is something which compels me to offer my perspective to the world, whether it appeals to a wide variety of people or if only my mother finds it agreeable.
I am not sure what that drive is, which I think we all possess, to share what we create with the world. Hopefully, it is somehow the Divine expressing through me and not just some narcissistic desire to see my views expressed in print. John O’Donohue, one of my favorite writers and philosophers wrote: “The Irish poet Patrick Kavanagh said,
“To be dead is to stop believing in
The masterpieces we will begin tomorrow.”
I can certainly relate to this. I know that I feel like an aspect of my personality is dead or dying whenever I am not expressing my creativity. I think we all have a need for creative expression and that a part of our expression includes a willingness to share that, which we create, with our fellow humans. I believe this to be true for any art form which feels authentic to the creator. I also think that in order to fully complete the cycle of creation that which is made manifest must be offered to the world.
I do not think it is necessary that said creation seek the approval of anyone other than the artist, but there is some profound wisdom which is gained when we overcome our fears and expose ourselves, in all our vulnerable glory, to our fellow humans. I never really considered my writings to be much of an art form, having reserved that distinction for great poetry or literature, but I have since changed my opinion. I now believe that anything we create and share is art, be it a painting, prose, poetry, music, or any of the hundreds of other ways we find to express their unique vision, gifts and/or talents with the world.
It scares me to commit to sharing my writing every day. It frightens me because I worry about not being able to meet this self-issued challenge. What I know about myself, however, is that I need deadlines. I need to create time parameters for my goals or else I just let the days slip by with my desires and dreams still looming off somewhere in an unnamed future. What I also know is that I agree with John O’Donohue who says, “Creative human thought adds to the brightness of the world.”
I am excited about giving myself this opportunity for expression, once again. Back in 2006, I wrote seven days a week and I loved it. I got up each morning, early, did my morning meditation and then wrote whatever was on my mind for that day. My writing was all over the map, because my attention could be pulled in many different directions, but that was part of the fun of this exercise.
I have an ongoing challenge, in my life, of completing tasks that I start. I have had this issue as far back as I can remember in my life. I have always loved starting new projects. As an example, right now, I have at least five projects started around my house that need “Elliott the finisher” to appear, just as I have at least four books started, in various stages of completion. I am not sure why I have such a struggle completing things. One thought is that I just have never developed the habit of completing what I have started.
As a child my dad always warned that I needed to complete each project that I had begun, before moving on to another project, but he demonstrated action which was contrary to this teaching, and as kids we always mimic what we see, not what we hear. I am not blaming him for my lifelong pattern, it is merely an observation.
Some would say that my tendency to bounce from new project to new project is because I am a seven according to the Enneagram, someone who is addicted to new and exciting shining objects, but who lacks the self-discipline to be a skilled finisher. I don’t necessarily embrace that wisdom either, although I think the concept has some merit.
The funny thing, about my personality, is that I absolutely love finishing things. I love the sense of accomplishment that I feel when I put the final piece of tile in a new wall or floor, or the last piece of trim on a room remodel. I can go on citing examples, but I am sure you get the idea. It is ironic to me that someone who finds such pleasure in completion would have so much trouble maintaining the inertia needed for said completion. But, here I am, once again committing to a project when I have dozens of others needing my attention. Yet, there is no denying how important this feels to me.
Yesterday I was working on a quote file I create for posting on Twitter and I read this from Sark in her lovely little book entitled Living Juicy:
“The key to a habit of completion is to suspend judgment about what form that completion takes. Often we have a critical picture inside that dictates how the completion should look. So we delay the completion in hopes of avoiding self-criticism or criticism from others. Learn to communicate with those sabotaging voices and bravely try new pathways. Judgment loves to leap up and knock over all your joy. Full attempts. Remember – you are a nurturing parent to yourself and don’t allow that language in your home.”
I really like this as I would never beat up one of my children the way that I hammer on myself for my lack of completion. Instead I would try to be loving and nurturing, gently nudging them in the direction of their dreams. I think I need to be that kind person when dealing with myself and my habit of non-completion. I know that Sark is spot-on about my judgments and my fears about doing something “right” stopping me in my tracks. Sometimes one little aspect of a job will create a roadblock which can take me several years to overcome. It is silly, but it is (or perhaps I need to say ‘was’) my life.
So, feeling inspired to share whatever grabs my attention, I am setting out to write every weekday for the next year. I fully expect that some of my posts will be very brief and some, like this one, will be more verbose.
Like Brian Tracy, I truly believe that “Love only grows by sharing. You can only have more for yourself by giving it away to others.”
Regardless whether I reach my goal of sharing 260 writings over the next year or if I find myself unable to share my thoughts tomorrow, know that I am always so grateful for your presence here, whether you are someone who has been with me since 2005 or someone who just found my blog for the first time. I love and appreciate each of you and welcome your thoughts here or in any of the many other places I am available. Together may we explore what it feels like to be the creative expressions of the LOVE we are.