I thought I knew what I was going to blog about this morning, but it seems I was wrong. It just isn’t doing it for me. I got up, sat down at my computer, and instead of writing, I started searching.
Normally, this means I’m procrastinating. I have a horrible procrastination problem, especially when it comes to writing projects. I can come up with ways to entertain myself for hours, blowing the time I’ve set aside for writing until there’s so little left, I feel it’s pointless to begin. But this morning feels different. I’m searching for inspiration. And not because I have writer’s block. Because I have an attitude block.
Yesterday a Professor asked about my husband. She had heard about his accident and wanted to know how he was doing, and how it happened. And after I told her, I said something about how I was grateful because it could have been so much worse if he hadn’t stopped, and had been hit head on. She kind of laughed, and said “spoken like a true optimist.” I think that moment froze time for me. I have never, ever been called optimist. Even on my best days, I think hopeful realist is about as much as I’ll ever get credit for. And I could feel my mouth opening to correct her, but luckily I caught myself. Who argues with optimism? Why was I so quick to reinforce my negativity?
Because I’m in a rut. An attitude rut. A writing rut. A dreaming rut. A prayer rut. Oh, and don’t get me started about the health rut… This rut has made comfort food pop up a little to often around here.
I’ve been operating under the assumption that it’s not worth trying to change until the situation I’m in changes. But the events of late have reminded me, there’s always something. I might be right. Life might seem easier after law school. Until… the bar? A family emergency? A new job comes along? We need to move? A new job doesn’t come along? Someone gets sick? (See… pessimist is coming out. I told you!) Lingering on what could happen usually doesn’t help anything, I realize that. But it might help one thing. A realization that life is never going to be perfect and easy. At least not for long. Life happens. Even the good things can be tough sometimes.
So, today I’m interrupting my previously planned blog to take you on a blogging adventure in search of inspiration. Maybe some inspiration to jump start a change in attitude for me this morning. Maybe some inspiration to think about what changes I want to make when my situation does change in 45 days. And maybe, something that inspires me will inspire you, even if you’re not in a rut today.
The Search Begins…
Well, let’s start with what’s right in front of me, on my coffee table.
The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin
This book is on my table because I had a conversation with a girlfriend this weekend about this very topic. She asked me if she thought it was possible she was going through a quarter life crisis. I said I was glad she was right there with me. Call it whatever you want (I like to switch it up: rut, crisis, insanity), but the combination of uncertainty and expectation that plagues some mid 20-somethings can make you a little crazy once in a while. Sometimes it’s fear, sometimes doubt, sometimes sadness, or even anger… It’s hard to know you’ve got potential and have no idea where you’re going with it.
But, I can also venture a guess that anyone no longer in their 20s is thinking, “those were the days.” The grass is always greener. And you only get one life, and you might as well be happy during it. That’s why I recommended this book to her, because I loved it (but couldn’t find it to give it to her right then…)
I’m a neurotic list maker, plan maker and check list maker – just like Gretchen. And I like in the beginning when she says that she’s not looking for the drastic “Eat, Pray, Love” kind of life makeover that some people crave. That sounds exciting to me once in a while, but I’m still trying to build a life here. A life I’m not really ready to give up on yet. So I just need a mini life makeover. A me makeover. I might need to reread this again. A happiness project of some kind can never be a bad idea, right?
MWF seeking BFF by Rachel Bertsche
Then, there’s the book I could actually find to loan her. I’ve talked about this one before, so I won’t expound, but it made me think about my friendships and the friendships I need/want in my life.
My friends inspire me all of the time. I love that about them.
But this book also inspired me to be deliberate about friendships. To invest more energy into them. To search out new ones.
Note: in case you don’t know, both of these authors have fabulous blogs on these topics as well. The pictures should link you to them, in case you’re curious.
These are giraffes. I think giraffes are incredibly cool animals, but that’s not why this picture is here. I took this picture on “safari” in Disney World in January. I know, The Animal Kingdom is not Africa, and you might be less than impressed by my photography skills (although, this is with an iPhone on a bumpy truck, so I was pretty impressed). But the reason I put this picture up is I can’t remember the last time I’ve laughed so hard or smiled as much as I did on this little mini expedition. I was with my husband and my little sister, the two people who matter the most to me, and two other good friends. And it was just a fabulous day. You’re never too old to have some fun, and do something different. I need to remember not to take life too seriously.
I’ve written two novels. The first one is really not good. But I’m still proud of it. I started it when I was really young. And the experience taught me a lot about how to write the next one.
That next one has a special place in my heart. I’m not pretending it’s perfect, but it was my baby for a long time. And despite the fact that I knew the publishing game wasn’t easy, you always kind of hope it will be for you. And rejection letters sting a bit, even if they’re not mean. And silence can be frustrating.
But when I need to remember to keep going, I pick up a Harry Potter books. I remember an interview where she talked about all the rejection letters she got with the first one, some really nasty. And now there’s a real Platform 9 3/4. She touched enough people that they made a tribute to the world she created.
It reminds me to keep writing.
I really like this.
What can I do today to be that kind of woman?
I’m going to be thinking about that all day.
More to come as the day goes on…