Shhhh. No one tell resistance that I am at my keyboard.

Ever since people I admire started noticing my writing… Ever since people started cheering me on… Ever since I set a goal, RESISTANCE has gotten strong. Really strong.

I’m learning to be a writer so this is where my resistance meets me – here on this blog. Where does your resistance meet you? Where do you feel that invisible force push you aside, distract you, and basically keep you from doing that nagging but beautiful dream that lingers in the dusty corners of your brain?  

It can feel a lot like fear, but disguised under whatever will most tempt you. 

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And RESISTANCE is endless.

When I swam on the team in high school, I would fantasize about having one of those ENDLESS POOLS – the pool with a constant current so you could basically swim in place for an hour.  That sounded awesome!  

That’s how it is with writing this month. But it’s not awesome. Not. Awesome.

Swimming in place feels pointless when you want to be landing on the shore of a new land. 

The instant I set my mind on writing an ebook this month – my equivalent of swimming across the English Channel – the avalanche of family-needs and work-needs descended on my little life like a scene out of ALIVE.  Forced to eat my words, I survived but it has not been pretty.

So, please, no one tell FEAR that I am here. These words may not be pretty, but these are inches I will crawl to gain some ground.

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I’ve been writing and I have still made NO progress where it counts. I have not one inch to show for myself. I look up and see my friends, my mentors, zooming ahead. Once in a while they stand on a rock or grab onto a buoy and call out to me, “Come on! You can do it!”

“I’m coming! Please don’t give up on me.”

I put my head back down and write.

A few days later I look up and see I’ve moved no further.

What the &#^$?

How does anyone do this?

How do people plan 9th birthdays, class parties, Christmas eve services, and cold remedies… and still pursue their dreams?

 … Actually, not just pursue their dreams but TAKE GROUND in the land of their dreams?

I realize now that my frustration comes from this stage I am in where pursuing dreams no longer cuts it. I want progress.

I am done pursuing dreams like the Gunslinger pursuing the Man in Black.

I am ready to take ground.

But first, I have to acknowledge that riding down stream feels really good, especially when you’ve been trying to swim against the current of resistance for a while (also what feels good is filling blog posts with random references so you feel clever while struggling).

Here’s how it works: You know there is something important you are supposed to be doing. It lingers in the back of your mind – like a blessing you know will someday be yours and like a monster you have no idea how to fight. This “something” is always with you, but it is heavy and awkward and not easily done. So, you do something else – something you do actually need to do too… something meaningful but easier. As long as it’s not THE SOMETHING, you will feel incredible release and fulfillment.

Planning your daughter’s birthday party.
Watching a movie with your husband.
Cleaning out your closet.
Designing a craft for the 3rd Grade Holiday party.

This is the goodness. This is family. This is life. – You’ll tell yourself. – And it all IS.
Of course it is. But it is also not THE SOMETHING and so it is a delicious rebellion.

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Imagine working and straining to swim against a current; your muscles exhausted. Someone comes by with a big, bouncy raft to sit on and paddle downstream. It’s beautiful and takes just the right amount of effort to fill your day. You sleep soundly with visions of nature and goodness soothing your tired bones.

Moving with the current feels especially good when you’re tired.

Don’t be fooled.

The better it feels to avoid THE SOMETHING, the more likely it is that you should be doing it. Right now. Go do it.

That’s what I am doing… my SOMETHING.

Maybe all this swimming in place is a season of strength-training. I have been swimming and practicing and working these muscles, just not getting anywhere. Maybe December was just my Endless Pool month. Hopefully, now, I am ready to get out of the training pool and into the ocean.

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Was 2013 the year of your Endless Pool? Do you have a goal you are ready to take ground on?

Do not give up. Resistance is endless but it is also mindless. Your hope and creativity and bravery can overcome even the strongest resistance. Together, let’s make 2014 the year we do our SOMETHING.

Do Something

Do not give up.

 

“Promise me you will not spend so much time treading water and trying to keep your head above the waves that you forget, truly forget, how much you have always loved to swim.” 
― Tyler Knott Gregson