Monday, June 23, 2014

Look at what you’ve got

A memoir in the making.

I haven’t been doing a lot of my “own” writing lately. Most of the writing I’ve done is for the newspaper.
But the pull has been there once again to work on my memoir.
I knew I had various documents in my computer files, scattered here and there between two big folders. But I had the sense that I really hadn’t done that much work on it. And where to begin?

So I looked at what I’ve got.

I went through the files and printed out things I’ve written, mostly over the past two years. I was amazed at what I found. I didn’t remember doing so much writing.
I had about 30 files with over 32,000 words written. If you look at it in terms of pages, with the standard page holding 250 words, that’s 131 pages.

It’s a draft, mind you, so I’m nowhere near finished. But it’s a good start. And it gave me a great sense of satisfaction.

Sometimes we get stuck in our thinking.
We think we’ve not accomplished enough. We think we’ve failed because we haven’t done enough. We think we’ll never start a project, much less finish it.
This can be especially true if we’re struggling with anxiety, depression, OCD, or another issue that sometimes distorts our thinking and makes us afraid.

It may help to sometimes take the time to look at what we’ve got, what we’ve done, what we’ve created, what we’ve accomplished, and feel good about it.
Pull out the creations, print out the words or photos, make a list of our accomplishments, talk with a good friend who knows what we do. Enjoy the feeling of accomplishment.
Then get back to work, of course.

Please share in the comments something that you have accomplished recently, no matter how small it may seem to you. 


  1. Great insights! And congrats and good luck on your memoir project.

  2. Hi Tina, since the end of random Fridays I haven't found you. Now I bookmarked your site so I can catch up with you. Too bad about your foot Hope it sorts itself out soon and congratulations on your memoir. Way to go! I bit the bullet and opened that longed for Etsy shop. I know!! Still have butterflies in my stomach about that one. Take care for now and I'm off now to catch up with you a little more. :)

  3. a really good way to look at things. :)

  4. 131 pages is so excellent! Congratulations.

    Something I've accomplished is getting back to teaching. I started again on Friday (teaching human development to nursing students), and was nervous, but right away it felt like coming home. I found it very fun and empowering.

  5. i know for me, it is very important for me to feel self accomplishment at the end of each day!!

    i recently finished my t.v. cabinet redo and that made me feel great!!! i also learned to knit recently and have knitted 2 skens of yarn so far and that makes me very happy!!!!!!!! you already knew these things, but since i share everything, you know everything ;)

  6. Ah, what a timely post! I woke this morning grumbling a bit about the lack of "accomplishment" in my life...which is not at all true. My real issue centers around getting some writing projects off my desk that have been with me for a while, but one is new, one is only recently ready for revision (I was waiting on comments), and just one is a "problem child." I'm off to a writing conference later this week, and a gathering of writers usually gets me back on track with my thinking.

    Meanwhile, I had the opportunity to interview and write about the actor/writer John Considine, who has a fascinating life story. At nearly 80, he's about to make his final stage appearance at our local theater, and I had a lot of fun doing the research, interviewing him, and putting the article together.

  7. That's a lot of writing, Tina! I'm sure there is so much in those words that can help others struggling with the same or similar issues.

  8. Look at it as if you are telling a good story. I'm sure there'll be many more pages to this story. I haven't started but a story rolls around in my head. I look at the research and don't know how to do that.

  9. i have been trying to clean little parts within our whole house ... i think if you break it down & work at the places that bug you or need real work it is a lot easier. now if only i could/ or can get my MIL to quit sending me junk. she is cleaning her house & what she does is sends home junk with the hubby. nuts!! what a pain. ( :

  10. You are on your way, Tina! Keep writing and let me know when you're done, so I can read your memoir :)

  11. Your final paragraph in this post is well worth remembering. It's so easy to think the job is too big and that you've not done enough -- but it's surprising the volume that HAS been done. Look at you! Bravo!

  12. wow 32,000 words, bravo-it was a good idea printing them out-I recently finished after years of hesitation compiling my Father's poetry for cousins and their children (I've no children), printing out the draft a month ago gave me the impetus to finish.


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