A large part of why I chose to do this project, and what inspired me to make something every day was that I felt it would be an automatic intention process. When I thought about making something every day, I realistically mused about the trials of regular life getting in the way, and considered there would eventually just be ‘one of those days’ that rushed by without enough ‘time’ or energy to get something done. I realized that there is a lot of life that winds up getting tossed into this category of ‘sorry excuses’ for me.
I have always been someone who finds interest in many things. I really like to broadly explore different and especially new activities, expressions, information, and experiences. You know, it hasn’t always been a fun or easy part of who I am but I have learned to love and value that drive in myself.
What can be difficult with this is that I’ll come upon something, gain some visceral intense knowledge about it and obsess over it with all of my time and focus for weeks, then it winds up hanging there, another collected idea drifting in the air. Later on when I come back to it I can be filled with a sense of confusion, or frustration, or self-judgement.
So intention is the key here. Truth be told I really do want to explore and commit to many different things. I want to widen my horizons all the time and not let things fall into complacency or unchallenging humdrum life. I have been there before, and I’m no longer just a spectator to my own life.
When I began to plan out this year long exploration I was immediately hit with thoughts like “what if you can’t fit it in one day? Don’t you think that is way too long in the future to commit?” etc etc. There was this part of me that was essentially planning for failure, or trying to make loopholes for my inevitable demise.
I’m not here to battle my own mind with hardness, grit, determination, and sheer will power. This isn’t a forced struggle against the toughness of my own circumstance and habit. What is following and flowing is a meticulous and intentional unlocking and deconstruction of the damn built on the river of my creation. I’m not declaring a winner or a loser, there is no game being played to win, there is no end. I’m declaring a daily and continuous commitment and dedication to me and my journey of creation. Damn straight I’m still on the first days high, you better believe it.
I do have an insurance policy of sorts for this, and that would be you reader: my social retribution! That’s right, I’m using you. It makes sense to share this experience publicly. At the end of the day, I know that if I bomb I’ve got some people watching. I’d beat myself up a bit for that grave failure, but I’d feel it even worse knowing that others are on the sidelines, either cheering me on or grinning at my struggle hoping for a cataclysmic meltdown. Thankfully right now I really don’t need that insurance policy, but it is nice to know I have it.
Another sort of mind trick I’m going to employ is a sheet of paper each month with all of the days boxed out. Every time I complete the task for the day I’ll check the box! Ooooo, exciting! In all honesty I feel a little lame about this tactic, but I have recently come across some compelling research into what makes people motivated to change their habits. A big piece of the puzzle is social, and another is immediate reward. Right now checking the box doesn’t feel very rewarding, but hopefully that will change.
So I will end this write up with some questions for you. How is your intention? How do you internalize the things you want to accomplish? In other words, what motivates you to change?