I thought I wanted to be a writer. According to everything I have read, by the act of writing I am a writer. I don’t even have to be any good at writing, apparently. As long as I want to be a writer and I write, then I am a writer.
But I have apologized with every inch of my being for wanting to be a writer ever since I first was told that math and science are where the money and value are – not reading and writing. I have grown and come to terms with my writer ways over the years. But not without apology.
I often feel guilty telling people that I have a blog when asked what I do. I usually tell them the “real” thing that I do, as in the thing that actually produces an income. Then I slip in at the end (nervously) that I have a blog. Talking about myself as a writer makes me feel super apologetic. Like I haven’t earned the right to call myself a writer, or a blogger.
A Little Bit of Inspiration
I will be attending Alt Summit Summer this year. Alt Summit is a design and blogging conference held twice a year (January and June) in Salt Lake City, Utah. I have known about it for several years now but could never bring myself to attend a conference for bloggers, not feeling like a “real” blogger myself.
Fortunately one of my favorite vloggers, Jennifer Ross, pushed me over the edge this year with her vlogs and blog posts from the January conference. I am so excited to finally be going!
I received an email recently with links to the keynote speaker presentations from the January session. One was by Lisa Congdon, the other by Dallas Clayton. Both are amazing and I would definitely recommend checking them out.
Lisa Congdon talked about the path she took to get where she is as a creator of lots of different amazing things. She talked about being unapologetic about what you want, and that got me thinking.
A Streamlined Life
Ever since then, I have been reflecting on what I want for my whole life, not just the what I do to make money part. What I really, really, really want is to have a streamlined life.
Yes, I want to write and be a blogger and a writer. That hasn’t changed and I continue to work my life and activities in that direction. But even more, I want to be a writer and blogger in the context of an overall streamlined life. And to write about how I got there and help other people find ways to make their lives more like what they want.
Ironically, Lisa Congdon also noted that her mother guided her to care more about being an interesting person who does interesting things than to have a tidy house or have everything done on the to-do list. I’m glad she said this because it helps me to understand that not everyone feels as passionately about organization as I do. And that’s okay.
But I do. I feel so strongly that I can have everything organized and clean and in a system that lets me do what I want at night without feeling like there are still things I need to do. But, I have been apologizing for it. Maybe not directly to other people, but somehow I feel a little bit like this is an impossible dream and I am insane to want it. Or, if I do talk to other people about it (or write about it), I almost automatically add something like “but I know that’s crazy” or “it probably will never happen.”
Come to think about it, I often do the same thing with my writing aspirations: “but I know it’s probably unlikely that I will ever make money from blogging.”
I have apologized. For wanting to have a beautiful, empty email inbox on a daily basis. Or having my house look like a cozy, gently lived-in hotel at all times. And having my to-do lists cleared at the end of everyday (or week), with whatever needs to be done either done or in the process of where it needs to be to eventually someday get done.
After listening to Lisa’s speech, I realized that I can want whatever I want, even if that is to be an organizing nut who lives a peaceful life writing (and eats organic food whenever possible). And I don’t have to apologize for it.
What do you really, really, really want? Please share your thoughts, and proceed forth pursing your dreams unapologetically!