When I decided to write I committed to building the habit of writing every day for thirty minutes. But I have not been successful doing it, at least not consistently. Why? Somedays it was the other demands on my time. Somedays it was just procrastination.
“WRITE” is on my calendar every day. But my track record of keeping that appointment with myself is sketchy. Other things get in the way, or I allow them to get in the way, or I consciously put them in the way.
Honestly, I don’t really want to do it! I don’t like to write; it’s not something that comes naturally to me. I struggle and it’s easy to find excuses for not doing it.
I must admit that I have been ineffective at managing my time when it comes to the task of writing every day.
Then I stumbled upon this quote from St. Josemaría Escrivá: “To finish things, you must start them. But you so often lack that simple decision. How Satan rejoices in your ineffectiveness.”
Whoa! That last line got my attention.
I realized that I had the wrong mindset about the whole writing thing. I’m focused on what it might cost me in terms of the pain and suffering I imagine. I should be focused on how it might benefit me and my mission. I may even come to enjoy it! I need to be more focused on the potential of it, and its possibilities.
Accomplishing anything requires that we embrace possibility thinking, especially about things that seem to be impossible for us – like becoming a competent, or at least better, writer.
John Maxwell, in How Successful People Think, dedicated an entire chapter to possibility thinking and why we benefit from becoming a possibility thinker. Possibility thinking:
- Increases our possibilities: to be open to a possibility suggests that there are more. Who doesn’t want more possibilities?
- Is attractive. It draws like-minded possibility thinkers and possibilities to us.
- Increases others’ possibilities. My possibilities become your possibilities.
- Allows for bigger dreams. It broadens our view of the world and stimulates more exciting visions of the future for all of us.
- Inspires us to grow beyond average. It moves us past, “It can’t be done. That won’t work. It’s impossible,” into the world of potential.
- Gives you energy. I’m certainly not excited and fully invested in something I know – or believe – can’t be done. Are you?
- Keeps you from giving up. When you believe you will eventually succeed, you refuse to quit.
People with an “I can’t” mindset – like me regarding writing every day for 30 minutes – have a choice to make. We can remain stuck, or, as St. Paul suggests, renew our minds and alter our thinking.
Become a Possibility Thinker! Make that simple decision to start and commit to finishing. And then imagine how frustrated Satan will be.
Written by Jim Gernetzke, business/life coach and founder of Nos Lumine