“I’ve been procrastinating the start of this new journal. I bought it intentionally early – even though my last one still has about 25 blank pages. That previous red journal chronicles this last school year. There is so much baggage between the covers of that journal and I want to leave it behind. I don’t want to take any of the old ugly into my new journey. So I bought this lovely new journal.” – My journal, June 9, 2018
I wrote those words 48 hours after leaving school for the last time. I had thought about writing in that new journal for days before I actually did it. At first I wanted to wait until school was officially done. I wanted to make my first entry a meaningful stepping stone into my new life, and I couldn’t do that with one foot still firmly planted in the old world. And then, when I was officially done, I waited some more. I wanted to write something momentous. Something important. Something memorable.
“Maybe I’m putting too much pressure on myself. Maybe in this big monumental – I finally quit my job – moment, I’m afraid that the things I write won’t measure up. Maybe I want to be full of wisdom and wonder, but can’t because there is still a bunch of waiting.”
I was waiting to see what my new life would look like. I was waiting to see how my days would unfold. I was waiting for a really big form of validation that eventually arrived, just slowly, like all things in the publishing industry. (THAT NEWS IS COMING SOON!). But finally I decided that I was done waiting. Nothing gets done if you just sit around and wait. And I am, if anything, a girl who gets stuff done.
“But here, I’ve done it. I’ve pulled off the proverbial Band-Aid and written my first entry. I’m looking forward to finding the answers to all of my what next’s in the pages of this new journal, and to committing my thoughts to these pages along the way. So cheers to a new journal, a new journey and all the twists and turns life will throw my way. Full steam ahead and happy writing.”
Here is my advice to you.
Don’t wait, write.
All those lovely journals you’ve hoarded over the years, just waiting for the right story to strike you, the right occasion to present itself, the right words to record… pick one out, grab a pen and get going. I promise you that no matter what words you put in them, the journal will look better filled than empty.
But it's not just the journals. So often people tell me... I will write when I retire. When the kids are a little older. When I have saved enough to take a sabbatical. When the school year winds down. When... when... when... WHEN???
Don't wait, write.
Take an hour a week, or twenty minutes a day. Or a four day retreat. If writing is something you love to do, then just do it. Plain and simple. You can do it. Don't wait, write.
Just for fun. How many empty journals are in your possession right now? How many have you completely filled? Tell me in the comments below! I’m on journal #4. I take it everywhere, mostly out of fear that I will have an idea that I just might forget. I record everyday thoughts, blog post ideas, story scenes, lines from favorite books I’m reading and more. Once one gets filled up, I place it on the shelf and grab another. (Trust me, there is always one waiting!)