On a Teeter-Totter With Myself

29 Feb

Every try see-sawing solo? Not easy, especially when you get to the bottom and thunk your hind end against the ground because of your rapid descent. You also don’t get to go as high as you might want, because your ascent is directly proportional to how strong your kick-off is after bruising your tailbone moments earlier.

I’ve been on a mental see-saw with myself this week, and it’s been strange. Remember my post about how I gave Facebook up for Lent last year? At the end of the post I mentioned that I didn’t feel God nudging me to give anything up this year. Well, the night that post went live, as I was praying, I said something like, “Yeah, good thing You didn’t ask me to give anything up this year. Because what would I give up?”

This was asked rhetorically, but answered nonetheless. Want to know what He said? “Your writing.”

What? WHAT? How am I supposed to give that up? I’m trying to build a career here. I’m editing one manuscript, with two more waiting in the wings. I feel an incredible time pressure to get these things done before someone else writes and publishes them. I can’t stop writing my blog posts. I’m posting every day, after all. Every day!

This past Monday, I decided to give the “give up writing for Lent” idea a test drive. I didn’t work on any of the manuscripts, nor did I think about them. I didn’t have a blog post ready to post at 4:00 a.m., either. I wrote one later in the day, though. How did the day go overall? It was good. I wasn’t as stressed.

So back to the see-saw. I’m going back and forth about this decision. Do I pause all my writing for another 38-ish days? Do I pause my “real” writing or just the blog writing (because these words on this screen aren’t real writing, according to the first part of this sentence).

My biggest problem with this decision is myself. I said that I’d post every day in 2012. What does it mean if I don’t post something? There’s not a contest, nor is there a prize. I admit that some of the posts I’ve made in 2012 have been less than stellar, because I felt pressured to POST SOMETHING! Who was pressuring me? Me. I’m always doing things like this. Making a sort-of realistic-sounding goal that turns out to be just beyond what’s realistic. I try my darnedest to stick with it because, by golly, I said I’d do it! but because I rarely reach these goals, I end up feeling depressed, frustrated, and slightly embarrassed, because I usually tell everyone I know what’s going on.

This is one of those situations. I’m at war with myself. Do I muscle forward, pushing through the pain, so to speak, and keep writing, or do I slow things down to a more manageable pace and produce decent stuff? I have argued with myself about this, going up and down on the see saw, but still haven’t come to a decision.


Photo by photo.zombie


5 Responses to “On a Teeter-Totter With Myself”

  1. iampotassium February 29, 2012 at 4:52 pm #

    Wow… that’s hard. I understand. I have been stressed out with work, trying to get data so I can write a paper about a topic before someone else does and I’ve been trying to post on here every week day and it is actually really stressful to come home all tired from running around all day in lab and then think of something to write in here! I totally do that thing too though where I promised myself that I would write in here every week day so I will do it DARN IT! >_<
    You are kind of my hero posting every day without fail and working on your manuscripts (and taking care of your kids!).
    I think that nonstress is better than getting everything done with a lot of stress. Maybe He just wants you to learn how to get better at listening to what you need in any given moment (less stress – I am sure this is a lesson He wants me to learn too…). Maybe you could try alternating days – manuscript on these days and blog writing on these days. Or maybe you could try focusing on your manuscript for a week with no blog or vice versa. Don't worry. I won't mind if you don't post in here for a while, WordPress will always e-mail me when you post again. 🙂

  2. Crystal March 1, 2012 at 6:44 am #

    Pray about it. Theres a reason for EVERYTHING in gods plans and they are his plans. I’m sure that your other readers will support you if need to quit writing on your blog for 38 days. Everyone believes in something and due to your faith you celebrate lent and if god is telling you to stop writing, that might be whats best for a time. Its just a little over a month (38 days) not that big a deal and just because you said you would write everyday in 2012, guess what? God has other plans for you, obviously.

  3. Kelley March 1, 2012 at 3:18 pm #

    I know how you feel. We put these expectations on ourselves for what? I have so much to do and yet, I’m blogging, reading blogs, tweeting… I love doing it all, but sometimes we put unnecessary pressure on ourselves. I needed to read this post!


  1. What I Did Over My Lenten Break « that nolen chick - April 9, 2012

    […] you follow my blog, you might have noticed that I’ve been gone. February 29 was my last post before yesterday. As I reread it, I remembered how conflicted I felt about […]

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