I signed up to a writing course two weeks ago. How to write better with Joshua Fields Millburn. The course began a week ago. Today I started my writing practice. One hour in the chair. No matter what. I just started writing. I wanted to write about why I decided to enrol in this four week course. After meandering for some time here’s where I landed … although be aware that it’s an incomplete SFD. As my hour in the chair drew to a close I decided to copy some of what I’d written into a daily dispatch. Just to get started … again.
I’ve always used words. They have been my tool to engage with the world since I was little. Reading, writing, speaking. I’ve got video footage of myself as a young child, perhaps four years old, sitting on the ground with a big box of books.
I was adept at school. I’m one of the lucky ones that the education system suited. I enjoyed writing essays more than puzzling out math questions. I like stringing words together, constructing flow through an argument. I was primary school captain; I imagine this was largely as I got good grades and could string words together. I entered public speaking competitions from my early high school years. I cringe at my early performances. Stiff, unanimated, reading rather than orating, scared.
I loosened up gradually. Still loosening up in my public speaking which now take the form of webinars, conference sessions, facilitating learning activities. I’m a podcaster. Learning Uncut is three years old. It’s built on conversations with others about their work. I’m a guest on other’s podcasts. I’m invited to host panel sessions at conferences, to share my thoughts on industry trends and topics. I write blogs, although not as many as I would like.
To what do I aspire? Where are my words leading me?
I would love to write a daily blog. Like Seth Godin. To have the time and wherewithal to put my thoughts together in a meaningful way. I’ve had a few cracks at this. Modelling off Austin Kleon’s Daily Dispatches. Up to now it’s petered out. Why? Time is a big enemy of this endeavour. And fear. That it won’t be good enough. But probably more time, because with time I can make it good enough.
The work monster needs to be fed and tamed. Almost daily. I hear it growling softly in the background now. I resist the urge to look at my timer to check when my hour will be up and I can switch gears from writing to me to feeding the work beast. Why beast? I do love it. Yet it feels insatiable. It’s up to me to set the boundaries. It doesn’t exist independently. I am it’s master. I make choices for it. See – it gets back to me and my choices. I make the choices that shape my life.
A daily blog. That’s my goal. And don’t mind too much what it’s about right now or how shitty it feels. I actually have a space of my own now that I’ve given my work beast it’s own beautiful home.