Monday, January 2, 2012

Should-ing Myself

someecards.com - I can't believe it's been a year since I didn't become a better person.

The first post in the new year. It feels like it should be a momentous occasion. I mean, in the past two weeks, I've only written two new posts, so it's definitely time to pull out the big guns and write something that is profound and hilarious and proves that I didn't completely lose it while I was resting.

Except that's not really how it works.

Inspiration doesn't seem to know when it should strike. It doesn't wait for a new year or a birthday or a new blog or whatever milestone I've got planned. Inspiration does NOT follow my time tables. Which is really inconvenient on days like today when I feel like I should be bringing it.

At the beginning of the new year, it's easy to look back over the past year (or past mumblemumble years) and think, "I suck. I should have given more. I should have exercised more. I should have read my Bible more. I should have created more. I should be more."

When I start should-ing myself, I find that I just shut down. I'm not good enough, I'll never be good enough, so why bother trying. One place where I am quite talented is in the realm of talking myself out of doing things.

Something that I've discovered about inspiration is that it actually does show up rather often, but it requires me practicing the discipline of doing to reveal itself. When I sit down and write every day, I can see a bit more clearly the story behind the story that might be worth our time (mine in writing, and yours in reading). I stop worrying about what should be happening, and focus on what is happening.

Something that I'm learning about myself is that when I stop worrying about what I should do and just focus on what I am doing, I have greater success. Because I can build on what I am doing. Recognizing areas where there can be improvement doesn't negate progress already made.

Part of my do year is to stop should-ing myself.

You should I invite you to join me.

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How do you deal with the "should-ing" that you do to yourself? What one thing are you already doing that you can make small improvements on?

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