Do you remember this loading bar on the top of our internet browsers?
Admittedly, for a lot of us, slow internet speeds are something we haven’t had to think of in years (acknowledge the privilege of the world that we live in).
But I can remember times in my not so distant past, sitting at a desktop and waiting for a webpage to load, watching the loading bar slowly inch its way across the screen.
I’m not the kind of guy who likes to helplessly wait for things to happen. I would tell myself, “maybe if I stop watching so closely, the page would load faster” or “maybe if I watch it without blinking, the intensity of my stare would miraculously make the page load FASTER.”
I was willing to do whatever necessary to move the needle closer to my goal, even if it was completely out of my control.
This loading navigation bar thing now serves as a gentle reminder for me though – a reminder of my long term creative ambition to create consistently.
I love publishing everyday. It’s done freaking wonders for me.
But sometimes I feel like writing a blog post every single day may not be sustainable for me long term both time and energy wise.
Right now I have it set up as a 30 day challenge to publish a blog post everyday because that seems achievable enough…
But I fear that 30 day period coming to an end.
If I no longer have the expectation of myself (and responsibility) to publish every day, what then constitutes a “good” reason to publish anything?
My struggle with publishing creative work so far has been this: “Yeah, I have an idea, but it’s not mature enough to publish yet.” AKA I have an idea but I feel like I have to put a million and one hours of research, abstraction, and work into it before I can release it to the world. I have to put more time into it to ensure it fully represents my ideas in the BEST most efficient way possible (AKA I want people to be impressed with my technical craft).
Publishing everyday has put this struggle to bed because I have to work under a deadline. I have to publish something everyday so unless I want to spend every waking hour working on a blog post 10 people are going to read, I have to figure out a way to get it out quick.
This means subtracting the perfectionism and getting to the root of what I want to communicate. Throw away all the creative frills and charades and figure out what my idea looks like in its most naked and vulnerable form.
It’s great and it’s taught me loads about who I am, what I like to create, and how I think. But if I scrape the deadline aspect, what’s going to keep me from falling right back into my old ways?
If you’re familiar with me or my writing, you’ll know that I don’t have answers…but I do have more questions and those might suffice.
What does it take to move your needle closer to your goal? To get your navbar to load just an inch farther?
Find what it takes and do that.
Last month I couldn’t write daily, so I focused on writing daily for myself. 750 words a day everyday and not a single one was published.
It built a habit.
Now I’m working on my resistance to publishing. I’m publishing a blog post everyday and it’s doing wonders for me and my confidence.
I shouldn’t worry about the sustainability or the future of what I’m doing right now because at any given moment, I’m going to need to do something different. My circumstances are going to change, my webpage is going to load, and I’m going to have to move on and try to load a new, different page.
Each new page brings new responsibilities, new conflict, and new things for me to pursue.
So stick to what’s working for you right now and don’t lose sight of the overall objective – Moving the needle closer to your goal.
(Getting that navbar to load)