I was lucky enough to get to spend five whole days with my friend and roommate Shab in beautiful Asheville, North Carolina at Type-A Parent Conference. (Five days! It was a glorious break from life-as-usual.)
We attended a day of business sessions and then two days of blogging sessions. I learned so much I thought my head might explode. We also hung out, went to sleep with our iPads, woke up with our iPads, got Sharpie tattoos, had bacon every morning for breakfast, and relaxed.
If you know me well, and aren’t familiar with the Type-A conference, I will answer your burning question – no, you don’t have to be Type-A to go to the Type-A conference. They welcomed me and all my Type-B habits.
Normally I come home from conferences kind of freaked out and overwhelmed. Too many things I’d like to change/learn/master/create. This time I came home inspired. (My inspiration and euphoric mood was quickly disrupted when my daughter threw up less than an hour after I got home. But, a few days later, I’m still inspired. That’s a good thing.)
One of my favorite sessions (HOW to choose? There were so many) was led by our opening keynote speaker, award-winning blogger, and author Patti Digh, who is, simply put, a lovely person. The session dealt with how to break free from writer’s block and get back to writing. I wish I had taken notes, but alas, I was hanging on her every word so I will touch on a few things that stood out to me the best I can from memory.
** I don’t have time to write.
I have said those words over and over until I have actually come to believe them.
Instead, I learned that I choose not to write. I make choices every day about how to spend the time I have. I may play word games on my phone, check e-mail 15 times, catch up on Twitter and Facebook. I plop in front of the TV after the kids are in bed. These are all choices that I make. And I am putting these things before my writing.
Correction: I was putting these things before my writing. Not any more.
** I need to write on my laptop when the kids are not home so I can concentrate.
Actually, I can write on paper with a pen, hell, even a crayon if that’s all that’s available. I can write at the table while my children color. I can carve out 20 minutes of writing while the children are getting dressed or while I’m waiting for them to brush their teeth at night. I will not use lack of uninterrupted time as an excuse.
I’m going to try to explain an exercise we did that I found fascinating. Play along at home – no one is watching. Stand up. Point your index finger up to the ceiling with your elbow straight. Start making slow clockwise circles with your finger. (Go ahead – no one is watching!) Keep making the circles and slowly lower your finger by bending your elbow. What do you notice?
Perspective. It’s all about the perspective.