Actually Starting

I’m going to let you in on a secret. I don’t know how to write a blog and I’m really just learning as I go along. But that didn’t come as a surprise, did it? It’s quite obvious. After so much time being excited to make this blog, I kept on pushing off writing my next post. I think I figured once I created the blog, I would automatically be motivated to not only write posts, but write more in general. I painted a really pretty picture in my head of sudden increased writing and the banishment of procrastination, ignoring the fact that I still need to work towards that. Simply writing one blog post and ‘going with the flow,’ figuring my dedication to writing would quickly follow, was obviously silly.

I’m afraid of the unknown. Another totally not obvious admission. My lack of writing doesn’t necessarily come from a lack of motivation; thinking of writing and finishing a story makes me excited. I’m afraid of the unknown; I’ve never made a blog before. I’ve never finished a full length novel before. I’m afraid of messing up and making mistakes, and not doing it right. The biggest obstacle I face in writing, and in most things, in fact; is myself. I get so wrapped up in my own head I let it hold me back from trying in the first place. I figure, what’s the point of starting writing that story if I’ll just mess it up? It’s a terrible mindset and it holds me back from a lot. Another example of that is in Speech and Debate, where I procrastinate prepping or researching because I’m afraid. I’m afraid that I’ll give it my all, and it still won’t be enough. So, I push off necessary preparations and tell myself I can do it later. That normally results in me being stressed until the last minute and not preforming as well as I could have.

So, why am I here, then? If I’m afraid of the unknown, if I didn’t want to mess up this blog or this post, how did I actually start, and how can you actually start? It’s actually really simple. I opened my laptop. I opened up this website. And I started typing. I tried to cast aside my worries and concerns, and I just started typing. As the words wore on, I began to wonder why I hadn’t begun writing sooner. That’s normally what happens to me. I don’t want to get started, but once I force myself to sit down and start typing, everything flows easily. Whether it’s when researching or writing, once I manage to ignore the procrastination prone and stressing monster inside me, the trouble is getting me to stop typing. I think in order to actually get started, not only in writing or school, but in most things, you have to recognize your problem. Your problem might be a lot simpler than fear of the unknown, but once I established that as the cause of my procrastination, it became much easier to get started. So, first, establish why exactly you’re procrastinating, and then, recognize; it doesn’t matter. Push it aside, and just get started. Once you just start, I promise, it’s going to be easier to continue. If nothing else, you’ll at least have more progress than before. Two words is better than zero.

“You miss one hundred percent of the shots you don’t take.”

Michael Scott

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