Monthly Archives: February 2014

Evidence of living life

Time Flies When You Are Living Life

I sat in front of my computer this morning wondering to myself what I should write for my next post.

A blank computer screen rarely provides me with inspiration.

My mind drifted to the well-intentioned blog editorial calendar I created in January.

Where did I put that thing anyway? Why don’t I have a few pre-written posts ready to publish at the hint of a dry spell?

My excuse, as usual: too busy.

Too busy? I looked around me to find evidence of my busyness. There appeared to be too many “unresolved domestic issues” to account for that.

I took a five-minute break for my daily dose of would haves, should haves, could haves…the Voice of Doubt enters (I thought I had learned to silence that thing)!

My mobile phone buzzes with a notification: a calendar reminder of a scheduled meeting for which I will undoubtedly be tardy.

Picking up my cell phone is often a big mistake.

Ten minutes and multiple social media interactions later, I glance up at the blank screen again. Well, that was helpful, Amy.

Disturbed by my earlier excuse of busyness, I pick up my phone again scrolling through my camera roll.  Maybe the evidence is right here.

Apparently I have taken more than one hundred photos on my phone over the last seven days.

Here is what I found:

Photos of the “new” sofa we found last Saturday along with fabric swatches for reupholstering it.

upholstery swatches

 

College visits  during winter break to Clemson and Wofford with my daughter who is a high school junior.

Tillman Hall, Clemson University, Clemson SC

Tillman Hall, Clemson University, Clemson SC

Wofford College, Spartenburg, SC

Wofford College, Spartenburg, SC

Daddy-daughter chefs preparing a weeknight meal.

Daddy-daughter chefs

Letterpress class at Redux Contemporary Art Center on Wednesday evening.

Letter press class at Redux Studios

Website header and background updated.

Newest header

Darius Rucker concert in Columbia SC with teenage daughter and her boyfriend.

Darius Rucker, True Believers Tour, Columbia SC

Saturday morning Krispy Kreme doughnuts.

Krispy Kreme doughnuts

Flower arrangements made and safely delivered for the Ashley Hall semi-formal pre-event dinner (seated dinner for 26 teens at a private home).

Flower arrangements for dinner party delivered

Front porch cleaned and planters replenished by husband in hopes that the beautiful Spring weather is here to stay.

planters replenished for Spring

Girl Scout cookies located, purchased and consumed.

Girl Scout cookies at last!

Girl Scout cookies at last!

House full of teens preparing for dance finally leaving.

Teenagers leaving for dance

Pre-dance photo shoot.

Pre-dance photo shoot

All of the essentials of a great Sunday afternoon.

Sunday afternoon essentials

Watching this season’s last episode of Downtown Abbey with my daughter.

Downton Abbey

Not pictured: Meetings, meals, work, school, family time, date night, talks with teenager, laundry, cleaning house, errands, doctor’s appointments, etc.

Evidence of living life

Evidence of living life

Ahhh. So that’s what I have been so busy doing.

L I V I N G  L I F E

Most of it is unscheduled, unquantifiable and cannot be crossed off a list.

Not distractions.

Not interruptions.

Just living life.

And thankful for it all.

How to Silence the Voice of Doubt

Just write

Just fifteen minutes. That is all it will take. Fifteen minutes a day. A few thoughts on paper—just words.

Maybe this is what I should have been telling myself every morning. Maybe then I would have actually gotten past the nausea and the scrambled thoughts to just do this simple thing: write.

Instead I allow my mornings to evaporate, my afternoons become full of domestic chores or errands or other people, other things.

But in the back of my mind comes the voice I have learned to dread but also believe: “You have nothing to say. No one is interested in your words. You are irrelevant, middle aged, mediocre and plain dull. Why waste your time and energy on this project that no one—not even you—really cares about?” The voice of doubt.

This is not the first time I have heard this voice. The words may be different but the voice is undoubtedly the same.

There seems to always come a time for me when the boldness and bravado that comes with the beginning of a new venture wears thin. The flimsy skeletal structure emerges and the vast pockets of self-doubt, discouragement and fear show through.

My nature is to jump into things. Throw caution to the wind. My energy and passion blinds me (and others) to my own inexperience and ignorance. This is what I refer to as my “smoke and mirrors” phase. It takes a little while before I realize just how little I know and how over my head I am.

Ah. This is the critical juncture. What to do next?

Enter The Voice.

“You are a fraud. You have no business doing this. You will be found out and everyone will discover that you don’t know what you are doing.”

A few times I have somehow managed to push through and in doing so, I have silenced the voice.

But all too often I have given in, busied myself with other, safer things and allowed the voice of doubt win the battle.

It takes courage to learn a new thing, to try your hand at something you suspect you might fail at, to answer a call you feel completely ill-equipped to handle.

The battle is won when you simply take a step forward and say, “Here I am, Lord.”