The most important thing to remember is this: To be ready at any moment to give up what you are for what you might become. – W E B Du Bois.
For 1,113 consecutive days, I’ve shown up here and written a blog post about some aspect of creativity, philosophy, spirituality, or self-determinism. That streak will end today.
As of today, I’m going to take an indefinite hiatus from daily blogging for the purpose of stepping back, replenishing the well, and brainstorming about how I would like to challenge myself as a thinker and a writer in the future.
This is an exceptionally difficult thing for me to do, but in the long run I think it will make me a more inspired person, a more informed thinker, and a more polished communicator. I began this blog as an experiment in personal development. The initial goal was to observe the effects that daily writing would have on my attitude and worldview. I would like to continue the practice of experimenting with daily rituals related to personal and professional development, but I will need some space and time to discern what sorts of rituals would best serve the person I have become (as well as the person I intend to be).
Although the daily writing streak has personal importance to me, I don’t want to fall into the trap of doing the same old thing just for the sake of saying “I showed up.”
I recently watched Curtis Martin’s Pro Football Hall of Fame Induction Speech. In that speech, he tells the following story about a conversation between him and his coach:
One day we’re in practice and he calls me off the field. So I go over to the sideline and said, “hey, what’s up, Coach?” He’s like he called me Boy Wonder. He said, “Boy Wonder, have you been working hard?” I said, “yeah, of course, Coach. I mean, you know, that’s just what I do. I want to outwork everybody in the building, not just the players, I mean, the janitors, front office people, everybody. I said, but why would you ask me that?” He said, “I just want to make sure you’re not fooling yourself.” I said, “What does that one mean?”
He said, “Boy Wonder, as long as you live, never forget this. There is a big difference between routine and commitment.” He said some people just do the same routine over and over again in life. He said some people even get better at that same routine over and over in life. But there are few people who commit to the next level. And I tell you, that left an impression on me that even though I knew I had worked hard, it made me work harder. And I applied that principle to every facet of my life. Mentally, emotionally, spiritually, financially, however it may have been, I’m always trying to commit to the next level. Thank you, Coach Parcells.
After 3-years of not missing a day, I’ve proven to myself that I can persistently show up, come hell or high-water, and write everyday. Now I’m ready to challenge myself in new ways. I’m ready to “commit to the next level” whatever that happens to be for me.
I treasure the value of showing up consistently, but I place equal value on the achievement of conceptual breakthroughs, paradigm shifts, and personal epiphanies. And sometimes, in order to experience these sorts of things, we have to step back from the details, go within, and listen to what the “still small voice” is whispering.
This is something I’ve been thinking about for the past two months. When I read the recent announcement from James Clear (a blogger that I follow) that he would be taking the month of June off from writing, it really inspired me to give myself permission to do something similar.
I fully intend to return to this blog. I can’t say when. It may be in two days, two weeks, two months or even a bit longer. We’ll see.
For those who have been reading my posts, thanks for your time, attention, and support.
For those who may experience any “concerns” about my decision, I assure you that I am well and in good spirits. I have not lost my love for ideas or my inspiration for writing. In fact, those affinities have only increased. Moreover, they’ve increased so much that I need to give some attention to the kind of ritual(s) that will best express the intensity of that love.
Until next time,