|As a reward, I'm giving myself the gift of this GIF of Kevin Arnold giving me a thumbs up. Thanks, me. You're welcome, me.|
But I will be honest, it was hard sometimes. There are bloggers who churn out posts every day like it's no big deal, and I tip my writer's hat to all of those guys. For me, though, I need ideas to marinate a little bit before getting them out to the world. The same is true of how I express myself verbally. Seriously. Ask me anything. I'll get back to you in two years.
Even though I wasn't always bursting at the seams with creative energy, I really did love this last week of blogging. I feel like writing so consistently really helped me reconnect with my original intentions for Avoiding Atrophy. The more I exposed myself to daily writing, the more I became comfortable with it, and the more I truly loved it (that's called Mere Exposure Effect - look it up). I found myself itching to get cracking on my newest post. I would read and reread all of your awesome comments (shout-out to Claire for making Daniel and I laugh out loud with your comments on zombie technicalities).
What I really gained from this week is an appreciation for the people who read and follow Avoiding Atrophy. You seriously don't have to do this, guys. You could spend your time in all kinds of great ways. You could make a sandwich. You could watch a hair tutorial. You could do work at your job, I guess. But instead you choose to spend it here listening to me talk about BB Cream, marriage, and my love for Red Lobster's cheese biscuits. I am so humbled by that.
|For you guys, I got this GIF of the incomparable Adele saying "Fanks." Fanks, y'all.|
I was thinking about the joy I have for my readers and for writing in general while reading a couple of books given to me by my friend, Matt -- a man so full of wit and wisdom that his words might literally melt your face off (if you don't believe me, go read his blog, and see if you still have a face when you're done). The first is a book titled You Are a Writer (So Start Acting Like One) by Jeff Goins. This is the book that inspired me to start considering my gift of writing as a vocation rather than a hobby. I even changed my job status on Facebook to "Writer" (but it actually says "works at writer", which is weird). The second book is titled Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World by Michael Hyatt. This one is a more practical guide to promoting your message or product to an audience. Here's an excerpt I've found particularly helpful in a section titled "Connect with the original vision" where he establishes this idea of "wow" as an intangible quality of a great product:
King Solomon once said, "Where there is no vision, the people perish." This is also true for "wow." Before it exists, it is only an idea. The only place it exists is inside your head. Sometimes you just have to close your eyes and once again become present to what it is you are trying to create.When I read that at the top of this week, I was really inspired to reconnect with that original vision. I sat down with a sketchpad (lined paper is too constricting for me), and just started thinking of all of the reasons why I blog -- reasons that live outside of my own validation.
|"She's a mess. What is her hope?"|
But I am someone with a whole lot of hope, and with very good reason for said hope. Again, feel free to ask me about it.
When I started this blog, even though I knew I would be writing about my own experiences, my vision was to connect with people who, for whatever reason, sometimes feel like giving up. I wanted to make these people all laugh really hard and commiserate with them on how gross life can be sometimes. And then I wanted to remind them of how very valuable they are and encourage them to dream the dreams that they've stopped dreaming.
Dreaming is a hard battle, one with a lot at stake. It's the same battle I fight, and I'd love to not have to fight it alone.
Writing every day this week has inspired me to make Avoiding Atrophy a community experience. I promise to always start the conversation, and I hope you will join me in continuing it.
You'll be hearing more on what this all means for this blog in the next couple of weeks, but stay posted. I will continue to post cat GIFs because that is just how I roll, but every now and then, you might get a nugget of wisdom.
Thanks for being here. You are awesome.