Welcome back to No Whining Wednesday, the only day of the week where you have 24 hours in which not to whine, complain, or criticize. If you’re new to this blog or new to this segment, please go HERE for our first day of the segment which explains in greater detail.
Today’s quote comes from the inspiration to this segment. If you follow that link or if you remember, I started this because of watching a speech from Iyanla Vanzant. Today’s quote is directly from her:
“No whining, no complaining about anyone. Everybody in your life has come to teach you lessons.”
Today, to keep you from complaining, think about the lesson the situation has to teach you. I’ve already started implementing this into my life and I still complain, of course (lol), but I have noticed improvements and I can vouch that this is a practical step that does work.
If I just stop and think, what did I do wrong and what does this situation have to teach me? Then I am less likely to complain about it. You have to understand that complaining usually comes from two things: not understanding a situation and not being able to change something. Of course, it can become a lot more complex than this but this is the root of most worrying, not being able to change something out of our control or not understanding something. Today, just stop. Stop trying to change it. Just see the lesson.
Writing is just as psychological and spiritual as it is physical. The level of mental clarity necessary to write books is not something that any writer can ignore. From reaching out to people for special appearances, book signings, and speaking engagements, it goes without saying that taking on this enormous responsibility will require the strength of an individual who has worked, not only on his craft but also his mind. Someone who has come to the page with a mindset that he or she will accomplish greatness. Someone who has not only decided on a profession but has mentally prepared for it as well.
At the time that I write this I’ve been publishing books for ten years and within the last three years, I have had the pleasure of working closely with writers in a way that I never have in my career. This intimacy is made possible through writers and the publishing of their most personal thoughts through the platform that is the blog. As I sit back and I observe I have come to understand that doubt and fear is a major contributor and enemy of the writer. It creeps into the mind, seeps into the soul and gnaws the bone. It gets down so deep inside the author that it bleeds through the pen and taints the words. Next thing you know every time you look up that writer is not a writer anymore. That writer is a shadow of his former self, wallowing in self-pity and doubt. That writer has allowed fear to creep in and to steal his gift.
Writing is not a cake walk. It is hard work and often mentally challenging. While writing itself is exciting, the process of pre-writing, writing and then re-writing, publishing and marketing and promoting, can take its toll. Not to mention the barrage of “Thou shall write like this” advice and the author’s own personal life. Who knows what kind of stress the writer battles during production and what kind of sacrifice it took for you to hold that book in your hands. Authors are people too and like any other person, we have lives outside the page and outside the blog, trials and tribulations to endure that can make finishing a book mentally taxing. Writers under this kind of mental strain must somewhere underneath the clutter of depression and self-loathing, find the motivation and the confidence he or she needs to approach the page again. He or she must root themselves in the present moment and find the strength to endure. That writer, he or she, must learn to BREATHE.
“BREATHE: Letters of Writespiration to Keep You Inspired, Motivated, and Writing” is the first book in a series of books that is my next project. A string of letters from me to you, the writer. It does not yet have a release date. I am also not having any fancy launches for this. After The Nora White Story, I am focusing on seriously finishing and producing my memoir which can take some time. These books will be small projects of mine in-between my larger projects such as novels and the memoir.
If you’d like to know more and to read some of the letters before the first book is released (which won’t be for some time), be sure you’re subscribed to my email list. I am doing some redecorating, such as an all-white background for a neater look. I am also sharing Chapter Four of my memoir in the next issue (Chapters 1-3 will be available to download to new list members or veteran members who missed it.) Also, if I have not gotten around to promoting your book, it will be in the next issue as well. Your patience is always appreciated.
Contentment is defined as the state of being contented; satisfaction; ease of mind.
It’s so easy to be down, to be depressed, and to be so very unappreciative of this moment. So easy to worry about what bill needs to be paid next, what the work schedule is looking like for this week (even though this week has not come yet), what the children are going to wear to school (even though its Friday night) or how many blog followers I do not have (even though there are people praying for your numbers).
I’ve been doing quite a bit of self-reflection and one thing I’m learning is contentment. I am learning to be content with where I am right now. Right this very minute and it is paying off. There’s a calm, tranquil to my days when I don’t have to bunch so many of them up into one. I take risks because right now may be the only opportunity I have. As the saying goes, it doesn’t matter how many resources you have, if you don’t know how to use them they’ll never be enough. Likewise, it doesn’t matter how many doors open, if you’re too afraid to walk through them it doesn’t matter. It’s not because I know it all (because I don’t). It’s not because I have thousands of followers or get millions of views (because I don’t), and it’s most certainly not because I don’t make mistakes (I make plenty). It’s not because I don’t have down moments. It’s because I have this moment. This one right here and there’s no telling if I’ll have another one. In this fast paced world of ours, we tend to worry about tomorrow as if it’s promised. We don’t have the time to appreciate where we are because we’re usually focused on the next place. Even in typical conversation we do not listen to understand, we listen to reply. We hear words and we subconsciously search for the ones that will trigger a response in us. Listening. It is a lost art. We hear a lot, but rarely do we understand what we hear and it is because we are not content with being still. I’ll bet there’s a lot going on around you right now, even if you are sitting alone. I’ll bet there’s a lot that you haven’t noticed, even in a small room. You’ve been in that house for years and rarely have you noticed the bird on your windowsill and seldom do you hear his singing. We have to learn to be content with where we are in our lives. Not in the sense of laziness or the unwillingness to work or to change, but content as in appreciating the moment for what it is without constantly thinking about the next. Today is not Monday and you are not at work so stop thinking about that. It’s a nice day out today, take a walk, or take the children to the park. Homework is tomorrow but tomorrow is not here yet. Focus on today.
I’m excited to say that I started my workout again! Its been soo long and you know once you stop its extremely hard to start back up again. I’m hoping to possess enough endurance to make it a permanent part of my routine, if not everyday at least a few days a week. I really do not want to stop again, picking it back up is the worst! So anyway, about breathing.
OK so you know how when you’re exercising you get tired really fast? One thing I’ve noticed that helps me, and maybe it will help you too, is to always remember to breathe. It sounds simple but you’ll be amazed how we forget this when caught up in the moment. You see, when I get overwhelmed with a routine its mostly because I need to catch my breath. I know some of you may be thinking, “But I do breathe!” No, not like that. When I say breathe I mean breath out. Exhale and get a rhythm going. Instead of breathing regularly and trying to catch your breath, breathe to the beat. When I exhale at the end of the beat, letting all of the air out of my abs, I find myself being able to endure much longer than when I breathe normally. And by normal I mean without control. Controlling my breathing was the difference between doing twenty minutes yesterday and thirty minutes today.