I recently picked a fortune cookie with the quote by Zig Zigler:
“Attitude, not Aptitude, determines Altitude.”
For some reason it really has all finally struck me. If I read or heard this quote before I must have let it roll off without pondering it at all, most likely I was focused on getting a good grade, and a boyfriend. I will admit right now, in school I wasn’t focused on learning and growing like one should while racking up student loans, and I’m beginning to figure out why.
I mentioned before I lost an internship while in college,
for reasons beyond my control, that caused me to just give up on my dream career with ease. I just told everyone, “I don’t want to do that type of work anymore” or “I’m not suited for that career.” Now I realize that internship thing was just a good excuse; but what really what was going on was that I didn’t believe I could achieve my goals in the end. I was motivated to “succeed” in life so much that I sacrificed my goals, because of fear- paralyzing- fear. Forget the journey, I felt more likely to succeed by doing something easier. I know this sounds sad but I don’t feel sad thinking back about it, I just feel resolve to change.
This paper explains motivation perfectly. I promise I will come back to discuss it at some point.
I could write an over abundance of words right now taking you from that point in my life to right now. In fact, I did write them but I cut them out. I’m just going to say, hey filledandfooled readers, I decided it would make me happier if I improved at this blogging thing. I want to know each day that I did my best at something, I really tried (besides being a mom, which I’m confident in). Whether I have any skill or imagination, I have the right to desire to improve at something I like doing. I’m not going to take away that right because of fear any more.
Then this post by Panty Parade on Off Go The Panties happened. The timing was just too right, I knew I at least had to try. Here is a woman who I consider a professional writer, feeling many of the same things as me. And she took the step to create the Stop Whining Twelve Step Twelve Week Challenge; it just seemed right for me:
The key to this challenge is to publicly state your goals and find others to support you in your efforts as you try to achieve them by working through twelve steps over a three month span of time. If you decide to accept this 12/12 challenge, make a plan to work at a pace where you can achieve your goals, leave your comfort zone when necessary, and publish your steps of the process on your blog. You may jump around and tackle different steps as you see fit.
Okay where was I? I wrote that all last week then I got really really busy. Not much has happened at all, except a lot of sunshine, dirty creek swims, and socializing with mommy-folk (some daddy-folk too, to be fair). Can I really do this with no time on my hands?
Last week was my first week as part of Panty Parade’s (PP) team of blogger partners doing the Stop Whining Twelve Step Twelve Week Challenge. It may appear that I’m a shitty teammate and I haven’t gotten started. It isn’t quite true, to get started I had to wrap my head around it, and it took me longer than I’d like. But I’m cheering for PP and my other partners Smooth Re-Entry from Smooth Re-Entry and Jack Chaser from The Things I See Up Here. I would suggest you check out their progress if you are interested.
My first task in this challenge, besides choosing a mentor and three blogging partners is to define my goals for this blog and for myself as a writer.
First thing first: I choose Dave from Normal Deviations to be my mentor and personal cheerleader. He is a great friend and I feel he would be the best at keeping me poking along at a decent pace. Thank you Dave, for accepting!
But I guess I forgot to ask, would you like to do this challenge with me Dave? You write so well, your topics are entertaining, you are kind and just so supportive. You have something there, and I know you are super busy with work, but your blog is valued by so many.
I’ve asked Cara, who is already farther along in the challenge than I. She said she was suffering from writers block but I don’t see it at all. She is a hungry writer and hungry to improve, and I’m so glad I get to watch her progress along with myself.
My third? I have thought of asking several people, but does anyone care to volunteer? Seems like the way to go with this challenge, you have to want it for yourself. As PP said, she knows I’m busy and she is accepting that I may tailor her challenge to meet my needs. I strive to do everything she set forth, because I thought it was a well-thought plan. But perhaps the partners thing can be tweaked a little? LSAM is doing it as well, and has gotten started, and was going to ask me to partner with her. Let us all just do it together?! The whole purpose was to build a good network, which is happening!
GOALS (by Monday, July 15th):
Behind the scenes goals-
- Exceed an average of 1000 views per week on my blog.
- Get re-blogged, or be asked to cross-post or write a new post for another blog with more popularity.
- Offer support, possibly in letter-writing form, to Nate in his effort to promote the need for better treatment of blogs labeled “Mature” on the WordPress platform.
- Submit a story to at least one call for stories (for pay), and at least one publication for fun/contest.
- Read at least one more book, in addition to the writing improvement type book in the challenge.
- Increase post writing/publishing; to at least one fantasy per week, and at least two other types of posts.
- Encourage feedback and criticism more, somehow.
- Use Twitter.
- Write once per week about the 12-12 challenge.
So that completes the first part of this challenge. I’ve built support and publicly stated my goals. Last week was still Week 1 so I am going (week 1), and then writing about a few articles I’ve read about blogging/writing (week 2).
Considering how long it took me to get to this post, it might be a huge challenge to do this. If I fail, I still feel good because I’ve pinpointed a few things I can do to improve right now. I’ve already won, in my head. But NO FEAR G!