“Come on Eleanor, you can do it!”, she emphatically told herself out loud, struggling to open her newest prize in the back seat of the car while I was driving. I smiled from ear to ear. She’s only four years old, yet she presented a powerful message with her example of persistence, cheering herself on, as her own best advocate.
Lately, I’ve been feeling somewhat overwhelmed with all the things calling for my attention. With that, disorganized thoughts and actions often follow. Of course, there is always the list strategy. Herein lies the problem with my latest lists; they are black holes. No sooner do I check a box, another box grows from that same box.
My approach to life’s “to do” list most certainly cannot be referred to as methodical. In fact, I have been known to veer from one realm to another without any given notice. This is what my husband refers to as my bubble strategy. Actually, he just uses the word, “bubbles…” with an affectionate smirk and a long pause at the end to describe my style.
So, you guessed right, my writing is on the list. And it is not getting much attention lately. It seems to be the easiest and most forgiving box to ignore, regularly getting shifted to a lower priority. I am quite saddened by the admission.
Negative talk has been reaching a loud chatter in my mind, for this reason, morphing into procrastination. Though, all along, there has been a whisper imploring me to just sit down and write.
After a few weeks of stalemate, the words finally are emerging in rough blobs of thought. Discouragement stands in my way. The creative work I believed I could accomplish effortlessly infused with passion begins to elude me. The beauty of raw feeling appears to be stifled by the burden of a daily task list. The irony of the black and white words I’m able to write stares at me, paralleling the non-emotional characteristics of a task list.
And I realize, I’ve been here before. I spent years reigniting my creative lifeline, after snuffing it out with the burden of self-imposed secular aspirations, and financial obligations. I found hope in my desire to share my experience of reconnection to my artistic self, with others, through my writing. And this is when the healing happened. I’m reminded, feel first…words will inherently follow.
If you have ever felt like this, you need encouraging reminders as I do. Where can it be found?
Observing the simple examples of young children can teach us the greatest lessons. The struggle to accomplish begins soon after our entrance into this world. Those who love and support us can help along the journey, but it is self-motivation and self-advocation that fuels our drive. And as usual in my life, out of the mouth of a babe, my little granddaughter modeled the positivity I needed to emulate.
Think how much more we could accomplish if we simply replaced our negative self-talk with self-encouraging words.
It sounds rather elementary, but recall how many times, lately, you have actually championed yourself with the three little words, “You can do it!”
-Erika K Rothwell
P.S. For those of you who believe in serendipity, I published this post and celebrated by boiling a cup of tea. The tea bag quote read, “Happiness is an accomplishment.”