In the morning, when I’m tired and it’s easy to lose myself scrolling through my phone, it’s the choice to open a book from the genre I’m writing to and read. In the afternoon, when I’ve already made lunch for my girls and/or prepped for dinner and it’s easy to eat the rest of their macaroni and cheese, it’s the choice to make a Lean Cuisine or prep a plate of rotisserie chicken, veggies, and hummus. In the evening, when we’ve finished doing our nightly routines, and it’s easy to sit on the couch zoning out to a show or again mindlessly scrolling through my phone, it’s the choice to open up my laptop and write. It’s the choice that makes the difference between letting the life I want, the changes I’m striving for, or the goal I’m trying to reach slip past me, or grabbing onto it with both hands and making it a reality better than anything I dreamed it to be.
The big choice is to change, or set a goal and reach for it. But, that change, or that goal happens in Every. Small. Choice.
Now, I’ve read similar pieces of advice, and have pushed back against it. Sometimes I just don’t have the energy to do some reading in the morning, or avoid the easy not-so-great option at lunch, or give my writing the energy it needs. But what I know is that sometimes it’s OK., because I’m making the choice to give myself the space and time to rest and reset. I’m making those choices mindfully, to rest when I need to so I’m my best self when I make those other choices later.
This week for instance, I chose not to write during my weekday sessions, and instead I binge-watched the third season of Stranger Things with my husband. So, on Saturday night, I chose to engage in a marathon writing session, and try to write the 4,200 words I hadn’t written during the week. 😳 I didn’t hit that amount, but I did write 3,003 words, and three is my very favorite number, so I’ll take it. I wrote a first draft of two difficult chapters. These chapters are where my main character breaks, breaks further than he was already broken, and are critical to bringing him to the point where he has to walk through his “darkest night.” I hate seeing him go through it, seeing him break further than he thinks he can survive, but he has to. It’s part of his journey. This week I’ve got a couple more chapters that need to be drafted, and then I’ll move on to the chapters that need to be completed.
What motivates you to make those choices that get you closer to completing your goals? What’s your favorite thing to indulge in when you’re making the choice to unplug from work and relax?