Or, pushing yourself to be happy.
This month I’ve been doing NaNoWriMo. Other than a few nights off, I’ve been pushing myself to write, even when I don’t feel like it. And I’m having a ball! Even if I’m not terribly impressed by most of my scribbles, it feels amazing to have them out of my head, and into a form I can edit – so much easier than the ‘birthing’ in the first place! And there is something of a ‘wow’ that I’ve managed to write some 37k words already…!
So my thoughts drift to next week, when I should (and will!) have crossed the 50k finish line and be the master of my own evenings again. I’ve just proved to myself what I can accomplish when I don’t give in to the slumping default, and I am living how much happier that makes me feel. So – post-NaNo, take over the world: more writing ! Reviewing! Cards! Drawing! Cinema!! Socialising!!!
If I can push myself now, why shouldn’t I be able to do it next month?
Because the little voice in my brain will say, “Yeah, but you’re tired” (some of my best scenes this month have come out when I’ve been too tired to over-think). “Yeah, but what’s the point? Who cares really?” – and there’s the kicker. That’s what stops me 90% of the time, doing things I want.
No, there’s not real ‘point’ in half the stuff I want to do. No one will care if I can’t draw any better on 1st Jan 2014 than I could on 1st Dec 2013. No one will miss my ramblings about the book I just read, or the movie I saw. The cards will get made, even if it’s last minute stressful rather than a fun hobby.
But you know what NaNoWriMo has taught me? Cos there’s no real ‘point’ to that, either – and yet here I am, doing it. I made a commitment to myself and sure the cheering on by the team and the visible word count tracker are all highly motivating. But ultimately I’m doing this for me, ‘cos it’s something I want to do – and THAT can and should carry on past November. 2 weeks ago