That's it. It's been decided. I am not allowed to leave the house until I finish this blog post.Become a Patron!
I am trying to publish a new blog post every Tuesday. The goal is to finish writing it by Monday evening so it can be scheduled and made available to the masses immediately upon their initial Tuesday-morning phone reaches. But it's already 3:18 pm on Tuesday. And I'm on Mountain Standard Time right now, which means it's already after 5:00 pm on the East Coast. So all my followers in NYC, Philly, D.C. and Miami are probably not going to read this until Wednesday. And that's only if I finish writing this goddamn thing. Sadly, I'm only in the second paragraph. So I have decided that I cannot allow myself to do anything else until this blog post is complete.
I really don't like being this hard on myself. It just doesn't feel good. You know what I dislike even more, though? Falling behind on my responsibilities. I give myself a few simple tasks each week so I can stay ahead of the game and on track to reach my goals. None of it is difficult. But there's something about putting a task on the calendar that makes me want to do literally anything else. When this happens – like it is happening right now – I have to turn up the discipline. I have to remember, though, to not be a tough-guy hardass. That's not a good look for me. And it doesn't work, anyway.
I was going to start writing about how I try to balance discipline with compassion with regard to achieving my objectives. But then I got distracted and clicked over to Twitter to see if anyone has liked or shared the six-tweet thread I published recently that contains some simple writing tips. I put a lot of thought and energy into that thread as a means of distracting myself from this blog post, which, as of this moment, is still not finished. Not even close. I'm only on the second heading and I have a few more points I want to hit before I try to land this plane. But there I go, checking Twitter and shrewdly convincing myself that I'm doing important work when I know in my heart of hearts that the blog is where people are connecting with me most meaningfully.
I got one like on that thread so far, by the way. Not bad!
So here I am. Back at the blog. Typing away because I know I want to get outside and do some things today. It's gorgeous out there and I really don't like feeling trapped inside on days like today. But I made a deal with myself: I simply cannot leave until this thing is published.
For me to finish this blog post, I have to be gentle with myself. Compassionate. Forgiving. I am going to procrastinate. It's in my nature. It's normal. It's not a sign that something is wrong with me. And yet, I have to be realistic. Mindful of my tendencies. When I notice myself following the urge to check Twitter, I have to remind myself, firmly but gently, that my goals and values are better served by accomplishing the simple tasks I have assigned myself. When I'm gentle, I'm more likely to get back on the winning path. When I'm an asshole, I respond the same way any reasonable person should when confronted by a shitty boss: I quit. So, knowing that I need to get this shit done and knowing that I can't quit, I try to be a better, more compassionate boss. I know more than anybody what it's like to be me. So I'm going to use that knowledge to achieve my ends. But I have to set some hard boundaries because I know this boss can be taken advantage of.
That's why I am seriously not leaving the house until I finish this blog post. I am not kidding.
Where Was This Discipline Last Night?
I was very tired yesterday. I tried to write some stuff, but it came out badly. And I have standards. I knew I would get myself into a little bit of a jam by trying to write and publish this all today. But honestly, whatever challenges I'm experiencing right now are nothing compared to the empty-tank feeling I had last night. Truthfully, no amount of discipline would have wrung these words out of me yesterday.
Instead of being hard on myself for saving this blog post for the 11th hour, I'm congratulating myself on having the self-awareness to realize that my time was not being spent wisely yesterday by staring at a blank screen. I did the right thing by putting it off until today. Now I have energy. Now I have words. Now I have a topic about which I feel fairly passionate. And look at me! I'm close to about 850 words right now, which means that I can probably start to wrap this thing up.
Right now I'm noticing and resisting the urge to yell at myself for checking my Twitter stats instead of bringing this piece to a close. It's going to be dark before too long and I still want to get out of this house while the sky is still blue. So being a little hard on myself might seem appropriate. But I'm not going to do that. It was good to put my attention elsewhere for a minute before coming back here to reach my conclusion. I needed the mini-mental break. When I procrastinate and get "distracted," that's just me being me. And I'm here to love me, not be disappointed in me. So I'm going to take that approach with it.
By the way, I'm at 650 organic impressions so far today. My daily goal is 1,000. So go look at my tweets and boost my impression counts, won't you? But don't do that until after you've finished reading this, all right? I promise there isn't much more to this post.
Wow. I'm Going to Leave the House Soon!
It's really happening! I'm typing sentences under the final heading of this piece. I'm looking out the window and the day is still gorgeous. And now I've typed more than three sentences under the final heading, which means that I could just stop any time and feel like I've done the necessary work.
Is this my best blog post? Probably not. But it's the one for January 28th, 2020 and here you are reading it. You made it all the way to the end, too! We got through 1,100+ words, my friend! I sure am glad to be here. Aren't you?