Posts Tagged ‘notforthesleep’

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Alrighty folks.

I have just completed a 30 Day Challenge where I would write every day for 30 consecutive days. More on 30 Day Challenges here

Some of you might jump the gun and roll your eyes and exclaim “But you already write a lot, that’s barely a challenge.”

Let me correct your assuming asses and tell you that it was truly a challenge.

First off, doing something every day over 30 days is tough. Maintaining commitment over a period of time, however small, is inherently demanding. That’s the whole point of 30 Day Challenges anyway, but I’ll get more into that later.

Days 1 to 8 went relatively well for me as I always had the time to sit down and write a small piece. I assumed it’d be a walk in the park.

But on Day 6, I was busy as something unexpected came up. It took me a huge chunk of time AND energy to resolve that by almost the end of the day, I was extremely fatigued, both mind and body. I stared at the computer screen for 15 minutes, unable to summon even a modicum of willpower to think and write.  By 10PM, the page was still impeccably white. 

“Ah fuck this”, I thought. “Let’s just call it a day and go to sleep. Why need I bother with this shit?”

Then suddenly I remembered the reasons why I was doing this challenge.

Commitment.

Persistence.

Discipline.

The point wasn’t to write when I can. It was to write when I can’t.

That’s what this whole thing was about.

Incrementally building a habit.

Enhancing willpower.

Stop coming up with bullshit excuses.

With that train of thought, my mind suddenly activated.

More ideas came rushing in. It was like opening a floodgate and allowing myself to be completely submerged.

I wrote voraciously, like a hungry vagrant gorging on the stale bread the bakery had thrown away.

Like a thirsty nomad gulping down precious water in an oasis.

Like a flame devouring the slim dried wood branches.

Words were quickly filling up the page as I wrote through the night.

The next morning, I was, in a way that’s still largely mysterious to me, changed.

So I kept writing.

Until day 17 or so, when I experienced another profound shift of perspective.

I was starting to dread writing by then. I considered it a chore, a burden, a bore.

Then I took a hard look at myself and asked: “Am I writing stuff that truly matters to me?”

The answer I got back was a weak “Yes”, which I know too well translates into a resounding “No.”

So I started to change my thinking. I began considering writing as a way to let my deepest and darkest thoughts out. And very coincidentally, I was going through a rough phase with some fucked-up shit.

Again, I opened the floodgate.

Out came the damned thoughts. Violently and unstoppably, like hot lava flowing from a waking volcano.

I realised that this was the opportunity to be honest with myself.

No holding back.

What ensued was a thorough examination of my feelings, desires and fears. The page became where I freely articulated everything that had been caged in my head.

The result was incredibly liberating.

At that moment, writing became my escape vehicle that put away my thoughts and helped me re-focus with a clear rationality.

There were even days when I wrote some poetry. It all sucks because I am a huge failfish poet, of course, but that wasn’t the point.

I felt freer every night after I’d finished writing. I’d wake up the next morning with a bit more space in my mind, which I then used for other mentally consuming matters.

Now that the challenge draws to an end, I have the chance to look back at everything I have written down.

A lot of it is confusing and entangling.

A lot more is dark, grim and sombre.

Which only means that it was a good thing that I unloaded all of it.

Moreover, I learned that momentum was a powerful tool.

Once I have done it for a couple of days, I tried to keep it the streak unbroken. I kept writing. On days that were more heavier than others, I still managed to write something down.

A baby step a day goes a long way.

And that’s pretty much the focal point of any 30 Day Challenge I guess.

The gradual building of habit and resilience.

Well, I am thankful I caught onto it and managed to finish one challenge.

I’d anticipated this month to be quite packed, and thus I have elected to finish the 30 Day Reading Challenge next. All I have to do is read for at least 30 minutes a day for 30 days straight.

Sounds simple and easy right?

I am through Day 10, and I can tell you that it is simple, but it sure as hell ain’t easy.

But I will trudge on, for I believe I will come out a better person at the end of the challenge.

Keep on keepin’ on.

Ciao.

P.S: If you are looking for a 30 Day Challenge, this link offers some great suggestions. Have fun. 

 

 

 

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