I have been concentrating on these words by Al-Shafi’i:
“My heart is at ease knowing that what was meant for me will never miss me and that what misses me was never meant for me.”
This sentiment is true in writing and life. We spend a lot of time worrying about missing an opportunity or being left behind or not being ready. And much less time thinking about being present and intentional in the moment.
Together we are learning that picking an intention, taking small steps, and finding a rhythm helps us build a better practice. These tools help us to show up, stay present, and feel prepared - when we make connections and when we miss them.
Attaching ourselves to a particular outcome is a joy stealer. It’s not that we have to be loosey-goosey with our expectations. For the love, *some of us* are doing some really hard boundary work. And at the same time, the creative process encourages us to try and fail forward. It encourages us to be both flexible AND critical thinkers. It encourages us to ask what is working and what is not, and to be accepting of the fact that things do not always work out as we hoped/ planned/ expected.
And still, here we are.
Missed connections are not missing out. They are an opportunity to grapple with letting go of the things that are not for us to make room for the things that are.
Read on to learn how I am using the theory of *what is for you won’t miss you* in both writing and life.
WHAT TO DO
The actions we take when faced with a challenge can be applied to both writing and life. Let’s take a look at some ways to proceed:
Don’t stop believing. Showing up is the most important thing - in life and in writing. The best way to figure something out is to practice. And the best way to practice is by connecting with your people and the page. Don’t let the fear of missing out stop you before you start.
Stick with the process. Showing up does not mean you have to have it all figured out. Trust that your intentions will guide you and that at this moment the steps you are taking and the habits you are forming will get you where you need to be.
Kill your darlings. This is a phrase writers often use. Don’t become so attached to the outcome - your words, your book, your plans - that you aren’t willing to let them go. It’s a natural part of growth and discovery to edit your work. Lose the clunky sentence. Shift your five-year plan.
HOW TO DO IT
Trying something new requires intentional analysis, small steps, and a rhythm for it to become practice.
Embrace your style. We have looked at personality types and attachment styles - all good information to have as you decide what is for you and what is not. Knowing yourself fully, loving all the parts of you, is an excellent discernment tool.
Take a pause. When you feel anxious about missing out, connect with what your body is telling you rather than your mind. Just for a moment. Where do you feel the tension? Respond to your own needs rather than reacting to what’s going on around you.
Adjust. You know how your body, mind, and soul operate. You know what you need. Now decide: What is your next step?
HOW TO USE IT
You can become more intentional #inwritingandlife by putting your learning into practice. Here’s how I’ve used this thinking in writing:
One. My ultimate dream is to write a book someday. I have been using NaNoWriMo as a motivational tool to work towards that goal. In 2021 I completed a first draft project that was a total of 60,000 words (the recommended size of a memoir).
Two. I used the project to discover themes in my thinking and writing.
Three. Now my job is to read over what I wrote and get rid of the parts that don’t work and start over. I anticipate cutting at least 50,000 words. It’s ok.
Do you need a guide to help you with your work #inwritingandlife?
I offer coaching packages to help you get started, get organized, create a plan to use your words and put it into practice.