Writing and I go back a long way. I’ve had a desire to write since high school, but the most that came out of me was some paltry journal entries and an emotionally dense poem from time to time. I followed my love for reading and writing into college by studying literature, but my only written works to be seen were essays with due dates. Shortly after graduating, a whole new vista of opportunity opened up – blogging.
I learned how to create a website and, within a few days, I trepidatiously made my first post. I knew I always wanted to write yet I was acutely aware that a degree in literature and a whopping desire to write doesn’t automatically make someone a good writer. I knew that what I was writing and sharing at the time wasn’t the best, but I did it anyway, knowing full well I’d learn along the way.
Over the years, I’ve caved to resistance time and time again. I’ve stopped writing. I’ve scrapped whole websites with tons of written work. There even came a point in time I didn’t write in my journal for months, which seems more like blasphemy these days. But it’s true.
In all these years, as I’ve developed my relationship with writing, I’ve noticed a clear trend in my desire to write. Springtime is my favorite time to write. It’s the time of the year that I get this natural surge of energy and inspiration. New ideas flow in from left, right, up, and down. I’m usually crawling out of my skin to create something, anything.
Often it’s during the spring that I’ll get new ideas for businesses. And while I never failed to capture the ideas and pursue them, some came to full fruition and completion, many ended abruptly in the fall or sometime thereafter. It wasn’t until this last spring (2020) that I finally realized that within all these superfluous forms (business and product ideas) was my heart and soul’s truest calling – to write.
So what does this mean for me now as I sit here on the precipice of the autumnal equinox (at the time of this writing)? I know from years of experience that crossing the threshold into fall and then continuing into winter is my hardest time of year. While I’ve most recently observed that this is my most difficult time of year in terms of emotion and mood, I consciously acknowledge that it’s never been an easy time of year to write. In fact, now is the time of year where I most often want to quit.
This awareness leaves me curious, as curious as the kittens that played on my patio this morning. How will I feel about myself on the other side of fall and winter after having committed to and followed through with writing?
During these days when it’s most difficult to show up and do what I feel most called to do I find it of utmost importance to carry buckets of compassion and wiggle room. Wiggle room to be whoever and however I am when I show up to the page. As I shared with my friend at the start of this writing session, my intention today is to be honest with myself about where I’m at and what wants to come through and to trust what wants to be shared.
It’s this ability to let myself be however I am – to let my writing be however it wants to be – that gives me the spaciousness I need to show up and write and stay committed. Without my willingness to allow my beingness, I think it would be tremendously difficult to write.
I’ve spent years trying to force my writing to be XYZ because I thought that it was the external form that was going to satisfy my internal craving. What I’ve since realized is that it’s not at all about meeting an external expectation about what my writing should look like (a business, how-to’s, well-researched, etc.). In fact, it’s those internalized expectations that have stifled my writing.
The gamechanger has been the realization of my heart and soul’s true calling, and its desire to be expressed freely yet within very specific, simple, parameters that allow me to – finally – consistently show up and feel good about what I’m doing; even when it’s extremely difficult. Boundaries, when well aligned with the soul’s requirements, create structure around which fun, flow, and life can spring forth.
Writing has always been at the heart of what I’ve felt most called to do. It’s just taken me a while to learn how best we play together. And I’m still learning…