I’ve got a really bad habit of washing and drying my laundry and then letting it sit in the laundry basket all clean and dry. This isn’t a huge issue for things like socks, boxers, and undershirts. It really gets you with pants and shirts. When I had a dryer in my living quarters it wasn’t a big deal – I could throw something in the dryer for five minutes and be good to go. Not so much when the dryer is across the apartment complex and it costs me $1.25 (nothing short of highway robbery) to run it! Nevertheless I let the bad habit continue.
On Saturday I decided that I ought to iron some of my shirts and pants though. Now, some of you may be thinking that I mean I asked Hillary to show me how to iron, or I was going to learn how in some way but you’d be wrong. I’ve been ironing my own clothes since at least my freshman year of high school. That’s over a decade of ironing experience. It’s ok, you can be impressed. So. I decided to do some ironing. It took me a few minutes to find the iron – I hadn’t used it since we moved into the apartment in January. Once I found it and got into a good rhythm I was reminded of how much I love ironing. It’s relaxing, I can see immediate results of the work I’m doing, and it’s great time to veg. out with the tv, listen to a good cd, or talk with a loved one. I’m glad I finally got over my laziness and did it.
I feel the same way about “Things I Only Share With Everyone”. I’ve had a few people ask me why I decided to start blogging again, and the short answer is that I missed it. (I would have loved to have resurrected SuperStippy.com, but not only can I not access it here on WordPress.com anymore, I can’t even find any of the content from it. And this is probably for the best. TIOSWE is different than SuperStippy.com was.) I missed writing regularly. Having an outlet that was mine that people who were interested could read my view of the world. I substituted by over-tweeting, and eve decided to write for the newspaper at my university (which I enjoy). But those weren’t the same.
I stopped writing SuperStippy.com for a few reasons:
- I started taking it seriously. And because I did, people who believed in me did. And I started to get a bit afraid of it. I’ve had a bit of a phobia for failure as a young adult and have tended to shy away from things that could lead to it. There was a time where I strived for mediocrity. The old blog was becoming a bit more than mediocre so I decided I’d just stop rather than see what happened.
- Somewhat relatedly: The blog was starting to see some traction and growth. Those people who believed in me were helping me out – sharing the blog with others, and helping me improve it so randos could find it easier and might be drawn to it. I’m a bit of a “stats” junkie (see: whore), and I was getting around fifty hits a day when I first started getting really into it and when I quit it had been climbing steadily for about three months. I look back now and realize that actually small beans. Like. Really small beans. But for this (then) 22 year old it was too much. I didn’t want anyone taking me too seriously or thinking that I actually thought I had anything to say.
- I was getting exhausted. I was blogging six days a week. About crap that didn’t matter most of the time. I was grasping at straws to find something to talk about to people that I wasn’t sure were all that interested. Lots of people only work 5 days a week and their hobbies, which blogging was for me at the time, in their spare time. I was burning myself out on something I’d only started doing because I thought it would be fun. Because I was writing so much, so carelessly my content began to suffer.
So I stopped.
Now? I’m welcoming the challenge. If I fail, I fail. I’ve been told my whole life by teachers and peers that I’m a good writer, and until a few years ago it was something I thought came naturally to everyone. Turns out it’s one of the things I’ve been lucky enough to have been gifted at by God. Now. I’m not a great writer. I’m good, a little above average. But not great. And now I’m committed to that. To making my writing great. Because if you’re going to do something why do it halfway?
Now? I’m aiming for strategic growth. In the past I was after growth at any cost. Didn’t care what I needed to do to get one more reader I was going to do it! Now I know what kind of reader I’m trying to reach and I can focus what I’m writing to those people. Once I’ve got that down I can look for new ways to expand.
Now? I don’t spend 3 hours on 6 posts (or worse – 30 minutes) on a Sunday evening which is what I was doing in the dying days of SuperStippy.com. I spend the entire week thinking about what three posts will look like. I write notes to myself. I work on them here and there in between when they post. I give the m the time and attention they need to be something more than a space filler because I’ll feel stupid if one week I have 5 posts and not 6.
What does that have to do with you? I’m probably not the only one who stopped doing something they were kind of good at because they thought about being better than kind of good at it and it looked like something to big for them to do (does that make sense?). I doubt I’m the only one who has stopped taking the time to do something I enjoy because I turned it into something I had to do.
Does that sound like you?
If you’ve got Case Of The Mondays right now: What did you stop doing that you need to start doing again?
What is your thing? What are some of the reasons you stopped doing your thing? List them in the comments.
Grace & Peace,