Good writing requires consistency, a bit of faith, a balance of hard work and smart work, and just doing the damn thing.
Great writing requires all of this and more. The more in question: knowing the rules and artfully selecting which ones to break.
Just lately I’ve noticed a bit of resistance when I sit down to write. That’s tough to share with you, I pride myself on turning out good stuff you can find something valuable and important from at a healthy clip. I’ve been publishing posts, articles, and poems steadily for months now. But I don’t know how else to label it. I get anxious at the thought of producing something else, of having something to publish for the day. It isn’t easy when you consider all the details.
You spend hours writing pieces to send off to publications knowing that if they take their time publishing your work you have to sit down and write another piece to self publish so you have something for the day. But self-publishing, if not done right, may well lead to a dead piece that few readers find, much less see or read.
It isn’t a lack of ideas, I have hundreds. It isn’t a lack of motivation or a lessening of the love for writing, I have both in abundance. It’s just this weird funk.
Maybe you’ve been through something like this?
Real strength is being able to adapt
I have a ready cure at hand. I live by the principles of growth, evolution, transformation, and the raw belief in my potential. No matter what, I am and will be on my side. I will be my loudest champion.
One of my most fundamental beliefs is that true strength isn’t brute force or endurance for endurance’s sake. I believe real strength is adaptation.
I believe in transformation
I am a huge fan of systems. I recommend them a lot and believe in them strongly. But I’m equally a big believer in personal evolution and development. The word for this is transformation, I believe in transformation. And if you make it a lifestyle, it’s called living by a growth-mindset.
Sometimes, if you’re not careful, a system can cage you in. It can cut off the supply of creative energy that you need to create something. If you begin to feel blocked creatively but have a kickass list of ideas and are not sure why you feel this way, maybe it’s the monotony of the process you’ve created?
Adaptation is the cornerstone of transformation
Look, I’m not saying give up the process. Again, I’m a huge believer in the power of process, systems, templates, and all the tools that help us get the work done. But keep these things in their place. These are tools to help you, not the end goal themselves.
And sometimes, you don’t need to stop a thing altogether. Just hit pause and see what happens. That’s why I’m constantly reading and studying other people’s approaches to creativity. To see what I can add, change, adapt. Adaptation is the cornerstone of transformation.
Creation, that’s what you’re really after, right? That makes all these other things that help you create a means to an end. This leads them to even more power if you think about it. If you know they’re tools to help you create, that means you can adapt these things, you can grow them, scale them back, and use them any way they serve you best at the moment.
Here’s the deal
So, here’s what I’m doing about all this.
I’m sitting here, sipping my hot green tea scribbling out uncomfortable but necessary truths I hope helps you in some form of fashion. But I’m also being honest with myself, hitting pause on a few things, re-evaluating a few others, and simply sitting my butt in the chair and working through my challenges.
Sometimes, that’s all you can do, and all you can ask of yourself. Chase one sentence after another, work things out, and push through.
One of my favorite Rocky Balboa quotes says, “It ain’t about how hard you can hit, but how hard you can be hit and keep moving forward that counts.” (Emphasis mine).
Sometimes this creative lifestyle is a boxing match. Not when things are fresh either. This is a late round in a mean boxing match when your breath is hitching, your eye is swollen, your jaw looks like tenderized meat, and your nose — did it always tilt at that angle?
What do you do? You tuck your chin, you hold up your fists and guard your face and core, you endure. By god, you endure. And you wear your opponent out. Ok, ok, I have watched my share of Rocky movies but the analogy fits. Sometimes all you can do is push through.
That’s it. That’s the blog post today.