There are times when I honestly wonder if I even like writing. For example, today I sat down to write and felt overwhelmed by the amount of work still to do for the second collection. I was frustrated with the lack of time, disappointed with the quality of my work, just all around unhappy.
So I wrote, but in my journal instead.
I realized a couple things:
- Yes, I like writing!
- The stuff that’s been “stressful” – having too many ideas, being exhausted at the end of a session – has actually been me being super excited about the thing I’m working on
- I’ve never acknowledged my own “excitement”
Perhaps it’s the way I was raised, or my experiences up til now, but for anything big that has happened in my life, I’ve never taken a moment to say, hey self, this is an amazing opportunity! Enjoy it!
So I’m going to start doing what I’m calling a “pre-start checklist” – yes, I’m taking a page from my Naval Flight Officer days. In aviation, and especially in military aviation, there are checklists galore. Traditionally a “pre-start checklist” is done before you even get in the plane, to ensure both you and plane are fit to fly.
Here’s my first iteration:
- Acknowledge the situation: This is something new and important, and it is through the grace and gratitude of everything and everyone – including my past self – that I am able to stand at this point and face this new opportunity. Thank you.
- Acknowledge the range of emotions that is to come: There will be excitement, obsession, uncertainty, fear, failure, hope, determination, and yes, joy. I commit to accepting all of it, wholly and with honesty.
- Acknowledge that this will be but one moment in time: My worth is measured in more than the work I will achieve in these moments to come, but/and also how I achieve them, and who I become as I do.
And now, let’s begin.