Unsolicited Advice About Fixing What’s Not Working

September 13th.

Not sure how that happened, but here we are. Right on the cusp of the fall equinox.

You can feel change in the air.

Unless, of course, you are living in southwest Georgia. Then it feels like summer is holding you hostage and you will never see temperatures cooler than 70 degrees ever again.

Blue skies, bright sun, oppressive humidity, and temps in the 90’s.

Every. Single. Day.

In mid-September.

But that’s not really my point.

My point is August disappeared faster than a plate of Lefse at a Hovie family reunion.

The hubby and I (and the dog, too, for that matter) spent the first two weeks vacationing in Wisconsin and Boston.

The weekend after arriving home, friends from Wisconsin visited us for a long weekend.

In August.

In Georgia.

If that’s not the definition of true friendship, I don’t know what is.

Despite appearances, this isn’t a sweaty workout picture. This is a ‘we got out of the car and strolled down by river’ picture.

The following weekend, both of my sisters stopped to visit on their way home to Florida after visiting in Wisconsin. Our niece (my sister’s daughter) from Atlanta joined us, as did our niece (Reed’s sister’s daughter) who attends school in Florida. (She needed to escape Dorian.)

But by the Tuesday after Labor Day, the house was quiet.

It was just me and the dog.

She’s cute. Just not very talkative.

So I did what I do best when transitioning from being surrounded by people to being by all by my lonesome.

I cleaned…and organized…and decorated for fall…and mowed…and pulled weeds…and stained my new raised garden beds Reed built for me.

You get the idea.

I busied myself. (Even though I am an introvert by nature, it’s hard when family and friends leave.)

Reed and I spent last weekend relaxing on the water, catching up on some projects around the house, and watching a movie that was filmed in Columbus!

By this past Monday, I was ready to get back at it.

And one aspect of my ‘get back at it’ was writing.

But the writing never happened.

Which is more than a tad bit frustrating,

Because I enjoy writing.

Really. I do.

Which leaves me wondering WHY AM I NOT WRITING?

What’s getting in my way?

As I pondered this, I began thinking about areas in my life I have been successful. (And by successful, I mean I have reached my goals.)

I began to think about running.

I’ve been running consistently for decades. (With the exception of a few months lost to injury after running a marathon in the fall of 2013 and then subsequent time off for a broken arm after falling off of bike while trying to be smart and cross train after said injury. Yep. God has a plan.)

Today, I am currently a little over a week away from running a 1/2 marathon. It’s been a couple of years since I’ve run one.

But a few months ago, Alli, my youngest hesitantly threw out the idea of running a half marathon, but didn’t know how to train. I told her I’d love to train and run it with her. So I pulled out my favorite training plan, personalized it, and shared it with her.

My goal?

Make it to the starting line without significant injury.

Secondary goal, should goal number one be attained?

Run it in a respectable time.

Just as we started training, Amazon Prime Day rolled along! Alli found an incredible deal on a Garmin watch.

Just what we needed! Christmas in July.

Great motivation!

(Love it by the way…It does LOTS of things. Including telling me when I am being stupid, as it monitors my heart rate and tells me how many days of recovery I need after specific workouts.)

All of my workouts haven’t gone as scheduled. A couple didn’t happen at all. When we were on vacation, for example, days of hiking and biking with the fam were far more important than getting in a speed workout. (I hate speed workouts.)

And here is the lightbulb moment.

Why am I not translating what works for me in running into a plan for writing?

Seems fairly obvious.

I need to:

  1. Establish a goal Do I want to write x number of words each day? Write for a certain amount of time? Do I want to write the next great novel? Publish a post each day? (Kidding. I can see some of you getting ready to unfollow me. Visions of an inbox loaded with notifications that I’ve just published are making you dizzy.)
  2. Create a schedule When should I write? I tend to be smarter and more ambitious in the morning….but I prefer to spend my mornings outside, as it is too hot to be working out or mowing the lawn in the afternoon. Do I write everyday? Do I draft on some days and edit on others?
  3. Find motivation I have some awesome books about writing. Reading about writing may be all that’s needed to start the creative juices flowing. And I already have a cute little writer’s notebook. And a fun pen.
  4. Be flexible Days do not always go as planned, but it’s possible that what I am doing instead of writing may provide me with something beneficial to my writing. (You know, like provide me with some valuable experience or unique wisdom to share.)

So these are the things I am going to be thinking about this weekend.

When I’m on the boat.

Enjoying ‘almost fall’ in Georgia.

Is there something in your life that’s ‘not working’ right now? What is it? What can you do about it?

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One thought on “Unsolicited Advice About Fixing What’s Not Working

  1. Ah! That’s a great application of what works in running to something else! Having spent the past three years working on my dissertation, it surpassingly hasn’t dawned on me to try to carry over some of those habits like that… hmm. You may have just contributed to saving me from the final year blahs, Karen. Thank you! Now I hope that it works for you too 🙂

    Like

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