I’ve had a love affair with words for as long as I can remember. Although my mouth is my preferred tool of communication, it is my writing that has spread the farthest and paid the most bills. I write most days, and there are several days when I find it almost completely unappealing but do it anyway.
The rare, ideal days look something like this… I lean my head back just a little so that the sunlight of my office window can caress my cheeks. It’s the final five minutes of my devoted writing time and I smile to myself as I reflect on the last three and a half hours. The mug of coffee I sat down with is more than half full because the prayer that I whispered at the beginning of my session was all I needed to push through each page. And these are juicy pages with more content than I need to feel productive.
On a more typical writing day my thoughts have rolled back and forth between self-pity, disgust, glimmers of hope and relief. Every time I check my clock to find that only 10 minutes have passed, I swear its really been half an hour. And by the time I get down to the last five minutes of my work session the mug of coffee I started with has long been consumed, along with half a family size bag of Skinny Pop and, on my worst days, a glass of white wine.
Many of my writing sessions fall somewhere between blissful and horrifying, but everyday I go back at it. You see, I can’t help myself; writing is a part of my purpose. A few years ago I started to seriously doubt that fact. I was in the midst of the most difficult year of my doctoral program and more and more of my writing days started to feel painful. Since I could never remember a time when I did not enjoy writing, I began to think that maybe I had it all wrong and had missed my calling.
What I learned that year is that following your purpose does not exempt you from pain or discomfort, but you do receive a special portion of grace and strength to endure the difficult times. Following purpose feels different in different seasons, but we can’t use our feelings as the sole measure of whether or not we are moving in the right direction.
If you are in the midst of a challenging time and you’re beginning to experience doubt, know that you aren’t alone. Join me over the #Next90 days as I confront my writing obstacles to accomplish one of my biggest goals yet…completing my first book manuscript. If you’re interested in additional support for your #Next90 goals, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Let’s do this together.