Tuesday, January 21, 2014

New Year, New Motivations:

Lately I've been a little bit addicted to Louise's blog over at SprinkleofGlitter, especially her new Motivational Monday's series.

If you've never heard of Motivational Monday's it, just like Things I Love Thursday, is a pretty big trend in the blogosphere. I've always enjoyed the idea of starting the week off with a little pep-talk so I thought I'd make my own Motivational series (although not necessarily post it on a Monday) about my accomplishments. I'm going to use this series to (hopefully) create a space in my blog for lifestyle posts based on thoughts and actions which have motivated me. I'll also be using it to keep on top of all my daily/weekly/monthly/yearly goals because I am nuts for finishing things as I feel like I never do!

I feel like I left 2013 with all my inspirational guns blazing, I thought of a new novel idea (it's now getting close to the 10,000 word mark!) and had reached 30,000 words in another. Not only that, but in 2013 I achieved a lot; from moving states, making new friends, starting this blog, finishing another year of uni, learning to knit...It was a very, very busy time.

It's funny though, I often feel like I'm not really accomplishing/finishing anything because I do everything in such small steps, and every day it seems a new item is added to the giant 'TO DO' list that has become my brain. At the moment I'm like a little ideas station, I have SO many goals for 2014; I want to save up for my first overseas trip (my heart is set on Norway), start a Youtube channel, finish the first drafts of both my books, keep my head well above water at uni, and keep adding items to my etsy store.

My biggest problem is procrastination. I am the world's worst procrastinator and I'm always in need of a little kick in the butt so I don't spend my whole day on the couch cradling a packet of Doritos & berating myself for not writing enough. The other day I held my breath & took a quiz at an old manuscript I hadn't looked at in six months (!) then emailed it over to my sister and her fiancée so they both could read it. No one's read the finished draft yet! It also made me think 'hey, I did great things with this manuscript before it was even finished' (got a draft into the hands of a literary agent) 'so maybe I should give myself a little more credit' . I'm also a natural nihilist who constantly talks herself into watching Youtube videos at 3am when she should be sleeping (or, failing that, writing) and then gets annoyed about it.

I think it's really important, when talking about motivation and trying to accomplish life goals both big and small, that we don't talk ourselves down. It's much easier to call yourself a lazy slob if you still haven't started that yoga class or finished your latest craft project, but it's much better for your mental health to stop, breathe, and think: Hey, remember that time I wrote a 90,000 word manuscript in two years, then edited the jing-a-ling out of the thing until it was completely different and much better? I do finish things, I will finish this, but it won't happen overnight - nothing does...Well, except perhaps the birth of aquadragons but that's another story.

So, if you take anything from this blog post, my beautiful readers, take the message that you must be NICE to yourself. So often we remember to be kind and loving to our friends, families, teachers, etc - but not to ourselves. Grow a garden of positivity and creativity in your thinktank, and nurture that thing!

You'll never be able to complete all your projects if you're only ever shooting yourself down. Think happy, and eat, drink and be merry.

Xo, Ellen.