Time is a real kicker. It marches on regardless. The minutes and seconds can seem to be an eternity or the hours and days can disappear faster than an open bag of chips. But there’s no stopping it. It will pass, and what makes time meaningful is what we have to show for it after it’s gone.
Now I’m not talking productivity here. No, I’m talking about literally what I have after a period of time has passed. What do I have to show for the time I spent? Have I made a lovely memory that can bring me joy as I recall it again and again? Have I accomplished something tangible, creative, or necessary? Have I rested or recharged my mind and my heart so that I have a sense of peace, tranquility, or well-being? None of this has anything to do with “productivity.”
We only have so many hours. How we spend them or what we fill them with all comes down to one thing. Priorities. Every minute of every hour we make a conscious or subconscious decision about what is more important to us. Housework or Netflix? Workout or takeout? Writing or doomscrolling? Social interaction or social media? Relaxing or vegetating, recharging or couch-potatoing?
“Don’t give up what you want most for what you want now.”Unknown
That quote floats around the internet, unattributed accurately to anyone as far as I can tell, but I love it. It’s about priorities. Make a conscious decision to spend your time on what is important to you. It might be easier right now to turn on a silly sitcom. It might be more appealing to scroll Instagram looking at everyone else’s shiny life. But has that ever left you with the deep-seated satisfaction you get from investing time in something that is truly important to you?
As a writer, I have to constantly fight for time to hone my craft. There always seems to be something more important, more urgent, to do. But if I don’t make my writing a priority, if I don’t label it IMPORTANT, no one else will.
A little trick that Writers’ HQ repeat offenders will know well – if you really can’t find time for 20 minutes of writing, try reframing it. Say to yourself, “I don’t have time for my writing because it’s not important enough for me right now”.Writer’s HQ
That gem from the Couch to 5K Words Writer’s HQ online course was a light bulb moment for me, let me tell you. Writing is important to me. It’s not my job, it’s not my career, it’s not what pays my bills or even what makes me get out of bed in the morning. It’s certainly not the most important thing in my life, but it is important to me and unless I stamp that label on it and move it up the priority list a few notches above social media and other trivialities (even housework sometimes), it will continue to be just that nebulous wisp of a hobby that flickers just beyond my grasp.
I’ve not been prone to posting ramblings like this here on my blog, but this feels poignant and valuable, like a mission statement almost. And maybe, if you’re an aspiring writer struggling to carve a niche out of your busy life to Be. A. Writer. this can be your light bulb moment.
Your writing is important. Do it.