Disclaimer: I’m a psychologist, not an English professor. If I worried about current sentence structure, you would not be reading this article. I promise to get my copy editor in on some of the longer articles, but for today, see if you can roll with it.
For years, I have collected thoughts, ideas, and topics I’d like to write about. While I have little experience writing, I find my yearning to do this has only grown over the years—even more so during the Coronavirus Pandemic. After I graduated with my doctorate degree, my father would often say, “You should write a book!” At the time, this seemed bizarre to me. I had no desire to write a book and couldn’t imagine why someone would want to embark on that journey. To him, I think, writing a book equaled success. To me, a book means you’re putting yourself out there or “showing up” to provide helpful information for others.
Over time, this desire to write has tugged at me. After reading The Crossroads of Should and Must, this longing has, over time, become “a must”…something I can’t ignore anymore. To be a clear, “a must” is not an easy thing. It is hard, because it takes you out of your normal comfort zone.
I’ll let you in on a little secret. Writing scares me. I’m a perfectionist. Yes, I’m admitting it. I can think through so many ideas, but when I start putting them down on paper, I freeze. I start judging every word. Then, writing becomes something I don’t enjoy at all. Time lingers on and on—a week becomes a month and so on. In this case, it’s been years.
I write all of this now because I hope acknowledging my fears and my decision to move forward into an unknown and uncomfortable place will encourage others. Many of you who know me know I lost my father unexpectedly to a heart attack thirteen years ago. This drives me every day. My biggest fear is I won’t push myself to live life to the fullest. I fear I will regret not pushing myself into discomfort, especially after I’ve acknowledged the clarity and need to be in those places. When you have this type of clarity, you know you have identified “a must.”
This weekend, one my clients came face-to-face with an emergent health crisis. Talking with them along with some other events—catching up with an old friend, listening to an inspiring podcast, and seeing a friend dream big and accomplish a huge project she had envisioned a long time ago—jolted me into action. My past thinking of “I’ll get to it later” started moving into “There is no excuse.”
Someone who has walked alongside me on my journey, wisely told me that once you write something and disseminate it, it is no longer yours. This is freeing and scary at the same time. But, it’s true. So, here it goes!
Over the next few weeks, I will post some survival skills to get through the Coronavirus Pandemic—I promise to make these real and relevant. As I push into this “must,” the visual that keeps popping up in my mind is me diving into the deep end of a pool, without knowing how to swim.
I look forward to you joining me on this journey…