Can you think back that far? It’s important. Give it a try.
For me, it’s easy to remember: it was November 1, 2012. On that day, I wrote:
“I suffer from the typical writer’s block. I see a blank screen and want to run. I think of editing some old work and cringe. I’ve been wanting to write on a regular basis for, oh, a decade. Not ten days, not ten months, but ten years. When oh when will that day come where I learn to write on a regular basis?” — Bradley Charbonneau, Nov. 1, 2012
I look back and I don’t even recognize that guy. I mean, uh, well, I guess that was me. I have transformed, changed, metamorphosized into a different person. It’s all thanks to Every Single Day.
I’m putting quite a bit of time into my upcoming book, called, not terribly surprisingly, “Every Single Day.” It might be horrendous. It might become a best seller. This might be hard to understand, but I don’t really care.
Carefree — or Fearfree
I used to care. I used to care a lot. I used to care so much that I was stuck. I was stuck because I was so concerned with getting it right or perfectionism, quite a dose of what other people thought of me or, the biggest block of all: fear.
Look at the first words in the quoted paragraph above:
- want to run
- been wanting
- ten years
- when oh when
Ouch. I feel for that guy. Man, he is suffering!
But where do I struggle today? I struggle to even understand that guy at that beginning phase. Part of me doesn’t have much patience or even sympathy for him. “Seriously? That’s what your fear is? I’m sorry, could you explain it again?”
It’s as if I’m in university and that former self is back in kindergarten. I just can’t relate that easily. “Oh, you don’t even know how to tie your shoes? Oh yeah, that’s right.”
I’m no longer scared of writing. I write Every Single Day. It’s just what I do. It’s not even a decision, it just happens. It takes little to no effort and it’s usually in flow mode — just cruising.
At this point, I hope my book can capture where the beginner is, what phase he’s in, how I can help her get out of the rut, where I can be of most strategic and effective assistance.
But I do have to think back to where I started. I have to roll along the path I’ve taken and see where I am today. I also have to show that to the beginners so they see that I have done it and that should give them hope that they can too.
Make the Habit the Goal
Remember how I said I didn’t care? I do care. I care about writing. I honestly don’t care about best sellers (although, sure, I’d love it) and I don’t care about writing the Great American Novel. I care about writing. I care about the habit. Want to know the secret? If I care about the habit, if I care about the writing, I will get to those other “goals” with little effort and minimal fanfare. Then the deepest secret? I won’t stop. I’ll keep going onto bigger and better goals because I made the habit the goal.
Where are you on Day One? What’s your goal? What’s your habit? What’s your fear? One day at a time, let’s banish the fear.
P.S. In book cover and subtitle news …
Every Single Day: From shame to blame to aim to fame to game.
In the end, it’s a game. But you won’t understand that until you hit at least the fame level.
Until then, keep up the good work Every Single Day.