Embracing the process will improve your writing voice.
Possibilities are everywhere. The thought of doing that something that will impact others brightens our eyes and makes our hearts beat a little faster. For those who take it seriously, they crack their knuckles and get to work.
As they begin, they hope and pray for the best. Putting their best foot forward, the process rolls on. Knowing that someone out there will see what you created is scary but thrilling.
Those kinds of thoughts are special.
In those moments, we are filled with expectations of what can happen. Clips of what we describe as successful plays over and over in our heads.
Plans come to mind almost immediately. We start strategizing about what could be the turning point in our lives.
Then there are times where your future is basically fixed in the minds of other people. They have an idea of what they want from you, piling on the pressure in ways you didn’t think were possible.
What do you do in moments like these, when people hold you to a standard you’re uncomfortable with, all for the sake of getting their fill and moving on to something else?
It’s a problem that a lot of people have to deal with. And in many ways, I still do. Every now and then I get the pull to write because someone wants me to. I have to remind myself of what brought me here.
Action Encourages Growth
I thought I’d be farther along in life than I am right now. I figured having a nice, two-garage home with at least one little munchkin was inevitable for me. There was no reason why I shouldn’t reach such a milestone.
But that hasn’t happened. At least, not yet.
This is what I’ve learned throughout the 24 years on this planet:
Your expectations don’t make goals a reality.
Your actions do.
If you want to write a killer story, with heart-pulling scenes, it has to start with what you do right now. Just sitting back and thinking about it doesn’t do anything. But chances are our actions are delayed because of what we see.
Our eyes often catch a glimpse of the good life in someone else’s story and we assume the impossible is out of our reach for us — like there’s no way we can work towards a specific goal, one day at a time.
The first step in eliminating a mindset like this is by taking your eyes off of what you see right now and focusing your mind on what you want to see in the future.
Switching the priority from your eyes to your mind allows your body to follow. Either way, your physical actions are going to follow anyway. But the question is whether or not you want them to actually take you somewhere.
Relish the Driver’s Seat
All too often we write ourselves off as incapable human beings with no purpose whatsoever. It’s no surprise, then, to find the steps we take well short of productive, in the truest sense.
When I started writing, I set out to write long stories with eloquent sentences and technical words that would make people’s brains twitch. I wanted to impress people with my words.
That’s not necessarily an evil thing to do. Everyone, to some degree, wants to impress people with their work. But that shouldn’t be the main goal.
The main goal, with anything you create, should be to tell your story.
Take people along for the ride, but don’t let them get in the driver’s seat. If that happens, you’re basically screwed.
What they want will dictate what you produce, not what pulls you. And this, my friends, is one of the fastest ways to burn out in anything you do.
You have to stay in command of your own journey. Nobody else knows your story the way you do, with every aspect of your perspective. You have a voice that is unique to everyone else. But it is a voice nonetheless.
What makes us scared to say what we feel?
What causes us to second guess ourselves in our prose and poetry?
The expectations of others.
Don’t Hide Your Voice
Your voice is what I’ve found to be one of the most important elements of having your work “flow.” You’re not confined to the structures and red-tape given to you by someone else.
By putting it your way, you can tell a completely different story on the same topic and people will notice. The key is staying true to your voice.
I’m not going to lie, it took a bit of writing before I was able to identify my own voice aside from others’. Honestly, I’m still going through that process. But it’s getting easier the more I let my thoughts flow from my mind to the pages (or screen).
The trick is to keep the pen (or cursor) moving. Don’t stop to come up with the deepest sentences known to man. You can do that later. Just let those ideas flow onto that blank canvas without holding back.
Here’s the thing: writing has not been what I expected. It hasn’t lined up to what I imagined when I started. It’s been even better and challenging, something I appreciate deeply.
The beauty in this journey of ours rests in the value weplace on the dreams we act on.
We have to acknowledge that it may not be what we expected. It may be better. It may even be worse. But if it’s what we are passionate about, then it doesn’t matter.
The love for what we do will keep us going. And the expectations of those around us will fade into the shadows.
Take baby steps if you have to. That’s okay. Forget about those who only want to sprint the finish line. In the end, they’ll find out that this isn’t a race after all. It’s a marathon.
There’s nothing wrong with taking your time, just as long as you’re moving forward, onward to the goal you set out to accomplish.
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