Off the Hook

The Reverb10 community’s June prompt asks, “What can you let yourself off the hook for?”

It’s nearly halfway through 2011 – can you believe it?  We are 161 days into it, and I have to admit that I am exhausted with all of the projects I started in January.  Project 365, Counting Our Blessings, A to Z blogging, One Little Word, and writing, writing, writing…

There’s just not enough time for it all.  Not if I want to stay sane.  Not if I want to enjoy my family.  Especially now that my little ones are home full-time and ready to enjoy a fun summer vacation.  (NO summer projects for us!   We’re just having fun!)

So I’m letting myself off the hook.  Actually, I let myself off the hook about a month ago, but I’m putting it out here now so that I can stop feeling guilty.  Project 365 (a picture a day) and Counting Our Blessings (scrapbooking one page every day) have been combined.  I now have an album that is a combination of daily photos with scrapbook layouts, notes, and letters interspersed.  It works, it’s honest about our lives and how we spend our days, and it’s easy

One Little Word went out the window last month (sorry Ali!).  I just don’t have the time to make an extra scrapbook, but I am still holding my word close to me.  Every single day, I write and edit as much as I can.  Persevere is a word never far from my mind.

And blogging?  Well… you already figured that out.  I just can’t keep up with blogging.  A to Z was fun, but it drove me crazy!  I really don’t have that much to share, and trying to find something to write on here every single day was quite a challenge. 

Whew!  It feels good to let go of some things, to let myself off the hook.  I’m glad I’ve realized what I can and cannot do, and what is really most important to me.  Projects are fun and keep me busy, but I’ve realized my limit.  And I now have a very clear idea of what my priorities are.

So now it’s your turn – let go of the guilt and just admit it.  I promise it’ll make you feel better!  What can you let yourself off the hook for?

(if you’d like to answer this prompt on your blog, just leave us your link in the comments!)

Persevere

A good friend of mine sent me this link  from tiny buddha a few days ago.  It’s amazing how one little article can change a person’s outlook!  I read the fifty creative questions, journaled some answers, and came up with these important points to focus on.  If you’re working hard to make some creative dreams come true, I hope these points can help you too.

  • Focus on daily baby steps.  For me, this means edit at least one chapter of my  manuscript every day, and work on one scrapbook page every day.
  • Remember to “create like you can’t fail”.
  • Connect daily with others who share your creative interests.
  • “All of creation is born in the now”.  Don’t reach for or worry about the future.  Focus on today’s joy.
  • Stay determined.  Don’t give up!  Remember, it’s one step at a time… “creativity blooms in the follow-through”.  Persevere.
  • Discipline!  Work toward your creative goals every day, even if it’s only a little.  Mark it on the calendar.  Get rid of the things that don’t need to take up time and focus on the rest with discipline.  You can get a lot done by working a little at a time.
  • Work slowly and steadily and know for sure that it will all turn out for your highest good.  “Allow space and time for creative dreams to ripen.”  Believe, 100%, that your dreams will unfold when the time is right.

 Thank you, Dawn, for the blog link.  It lifted me up and helped me focus again!

One Little Word

“Thirty years ago my older brother, who was ten years old at the time, was trying to get a report on birds written that he’d had three months to write.  It was due the next day.  We were out at our family cabin in Bolinas, and he was at the kitchen table close to tears, surrounded by binder and paper and pencils and unopened books on birds, immobilized by the hugeness of the task ahead.  Then my father sat down beside him, put his arm around my brother’s shoulder, and said, “Bird by bird, buddy.  Just take it bird by bird.”  -Anne Lamott,  Bird by Bird

This is a favorite story of mine.  It resonates with me because it’s how I feel about writing.   Writing a book is an overwhelming process, and I still can’t believe I finished a manuscript in 2010.  Now I’m wondering if I can do it again.

For me, 2011 is all about following through on my dreams even when the road is scary and difficult – especially when it’s scary and difficult.   That’s why I chose the word Persevere for my One Little Word.  I’m determined to see where last year’s efforts will take me.  I’m excited to see what happens to my first attempt at a book, and looking forward to continuing with my second.  

I guess in the end, my ultimate dream is to work from home doing something that I love.  I know I love writing, I love scrapbooking, and more than anything I love being home with my kids.  So 2011 is going to be a year of persevering, of believing in dreams coming true.  Of knowing that if I just keep taking baby steps in the direction of my dream, then it will all come together.  It may not come about in any manner that I’ve planned, but it’ll happen.  So I keep reminding myself, every day, to take it slow, step by step… bird by bird.

What’s your One Little Word?