Listen to the Mustn'ts, child, listen to the Don'ts.
Listen to the Shouldn'ts, the Impossibles, the Won'ts.

Listen to the Never Haves, then listen close to me.
Anything can happen, child, Anything can be.

-Shel Silverstein

Friday, May 4, 2012


Last year, when we decided to move, I spent weeks I decluttering our old house and packing boxes. Then I settled us into our temporary house in about 24 hours flat. Then I spent 6 months meeting with contractors, running errands, checking on the job, picking out colors—everything that goes into building a new house. When the construction was finished, we spent several more weeks getting settled. I wouldn’t let a soul rest until everything, even the garage, was put away and every last picture was hung.

I was a woman possessed.

Before I changed jobs last May, I was working 80-100 hours a week and I was on the road about half of my life. I thrived on the deadlines and the work. You know…until I had a mental breakdown.

Last November, I got a burr up my kiester and decided to participate in National Novel Writing Month. I finished the book that I had been working on for the prior 22 months. It was incredible.

How did I do all that? How did was I so busy and yet utterly happy with it all? How was I able to accomplish so much?


That’s how.

And now? The house is settled, I have a new job that barely requires a solid 40 hours a week and I am completely and utterly bored. I can’t seem to find my MOTIVATION.

I need my motivation more than ever right now. I have committed to write a second book and run a half marathon with my sister.

But alas, I am finding it hard to train.
I am finding it hard to write.
I am finding it hard to go to work.
I am finding it hard to clean the house.
I am finding it hard just to get out of bed in the morning.

Do any of you ever feel that way? Of course you do. I know I’m not alone in this. What do you do to stay motivated? I’m the kind of person that requires a life event, some kind of drama or goal, to motivate me. I’m a sprinter. I sprint for a short period of time and then fizzle out. The problem is, life isn’t always full of drama or big events. Sometimes it’s the same thing, over and over, for weeks, months, even years!

How blah.

I feel like an old man looking forward to the mailman each day so he has a reason to get out of his chair, walk to the mailbox, and hope for something exciting only to be disappointed with a pile of “Resident” mail and bills.

So how? HOW do we find motivation when there is no external force pushing us? How do we create motivation out of nothing other than what we have inside?

Here’s how. We get over ourselves, pull up our big girl panties and just do it.

Shel Silverstein, my favorite poet, said…

All the woulda-coulda-shouldas
Layin’ in the sun,
Talkin’ bout the things
They woulda-coulda-shoulda done…
But those woulda-coulda-shouldas
All ran away and hid
From one little did.

I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to be a woulda-coulda-shoulda.

I’m a DID.

1 comment:

  1. I had to have Eric read this one. It sounded like he was writing it. You two were definitely made from the same mold!