Tag Archives: Work Harder

Morning Pages

22 Jan

2013-03-05 15.18.12-1This is the year that I’m forcing myself to become a writer. I’ve started writing a downright shitty book, full of cliches and adverbs, and I have no idea where I’m going with it. But I’m getting it out there. It’s the book I’ve been holding inside of me for years, and I’m doing it. I want to shape it, help it grow. I’d love for it to be great one day. But, right now, I’m getting that shitty thing on paper one word at a time.

I’ve committed to writing for at least an hour, for at least five days out of the week. As much as I wish I could quit my job and dedicate myself to my dream full time, I have to go to work. A part of me likes work, finds inspiration there. I’ve looked to other writers to see how they’ve circumvented this problem. So many of them offer the same piece of advice, morning pages. They get up before their normal day would start and churn out some writing. Before the different stresses of life arise, before work and family and friends drain the energy, before the phone starts ringing, they dedicate themselves to solitude and writing.

I’m not a morning person. My college roommate, who has been one of my lifelong friends, described my morning persona as “Satan incarnate.” I’d like to think that with maturity, I’ve become a little less demonic in response to my alarm, but I still hate it. I love nothing more that staying in bed, continuing my dream, snuggling for an unreasonable amount of hours. I’m a pro at it.

So this whole morning pages thing has been something I have always eliminated as a possibility for me. But this is the year. This is when I dedicate myself to writing, when I decide that writing my shitty book is more important than an extra hour of sleep. I bargained with myself. At first, I planned on doing it every day before work. Then I eliminated Saturday, because it is already tragic enough that I work on Saturday. Then I eliminated Fridays, because I already get up at six and that’s too early. Soon enough, Wednesday went out the door, because it’s like my Monday, and Monday’s are horrible.

So Thursday.

If I can resist the snooze tomorrow morning, it will be my third Thursday in a row where I got up an hour early to write morning pages. I sulk for about five minutes, then I get down to it. It makes such a difference. That little sacrifice of sleep reminds me how important this work is to me. It gets my brain going in the directions I want it to go. And my shitty book keeps growing and growing.

Jealousy

10 Jan

Two types of veterinary technicians exist. There are the ones like me that enjoy the career as is, possibly want to do it their whole lives and bask in the freedom of much less responsibility. Then there are veterinary technicians who are earning an income and gaining experience on the road to becoming a veterinarian. I work with three of this second type of technician, and in this last week, two of them were accepted to Cornell University’s Vet School.

I SHOULD be happy for them. It’s an amazing accomplishment, and they are both hard-working and deserving girls. They’re going to make wonderful veterinarians one day, and I know that. But that wasn’t my internal reaction when I found out about their news. I was jealous, angry, spiteful. I found myself thinking that maybe they’d fail out of school eventually. And I felt disgust with myself soon after.

I carried around this ugly, jealous feeling for most of the day, ashamed of it, and trying to decide exactly what to do with it. I don’t even like to think that I’m capable of those thoughts.

I decided two things. One, I will be happy for them. I will find a way. I will smile and ask all about it and support them until I make myself believe it. Not sure if it is possible to kill those jealousy feelings in there, but succumbing to that kind of resentment is the first step on the road to bitterness. Two, I have to focus those feelings on myself and change them into something else.

I don’t want to be a veterinarian. I know that. I’ve thought long and hard about it, and the medical/science field is not for me. My creative spirit pulls me elsewhere. But the jealousy comes from their accomplishment. Those two lovely ladies worked hard, for years, and will have to work hard for years to come. And while I don’t want to follow the path they’re on, I have dreams and aspirations that require hard work, perhaps years of it, perhaps a lifetime of it. The last week I have brainstormed a good New Year’s Resolution for this brave and glorious year ahead. I tend to pick many specific commitments, but this year I have decided to pick one that is vague and noncommital.

Work Harder.

If I want things to happen for me. If I want those big accomplishments, I need to make some changes. When I think of the hours spent playing Candy Crush or the hours watching the same youtube videos over and over again or the dozens of times a day when I refresh my news feed on Facebook, such a waste of time! This isn’t to say that there won’t be any of that. I love relaxing and unwinding. There just needs to be less of it. I need to work harder, and I need to start now.