Seven months ago I read the book Soundtracks by Jon Acuff.
And I just pulled it off my shelf and read one of my highlights:
“I started my first blog in 2001… Things were moving along, but then I started overthinking everything.
“What if someone finds out I don’t really know what I’m doing?”
“Where is this even going?”
“What’s the point if I don’t have a perfect plan to grow it?”
Those three soundtracks and a thousand more knocked me off the internet for seven straight years. I didn’t start another blog until 2008. Who knows how much further I’d be if I’d spent those seven years growing my audience and content?”Soundtracks by Jon Acuff
When I read that I felt convicted.
Because I started blogging consistently toward the end of 2010, the year before I quit my corporate sales job to become a freelance writer. Back then I simply wanted to condition myself to publish something weekly. And it worked.
It helped break the back of this overthinking monster that’s always seemed to plague me.
I quit my job in May of 2011 and continued to blog sporadically. But my blogs quickly faded into the background as I took on client work. Once I had enough client work I stopped blogging.
Back then blogging was just a means to an end.
But I’ve always missed it.
I tried to blog again in 2017. I set a wildly ambitious goal of posting a new blog post. Every day. For 10 years.
You know, just a simple little decade-long exercise. No biggie.
Yes, I know now that to go from not blogging for six years to blogging daily for 10 was stupid.
And you probably know where this is going…
After posting for 300 days in a row I quit.
So where are all those posts?
Oh there right here on my site still…
You just can’t see them.
That’s because I was so embarrassed by the terribly low-quality of writing that I changed them all to drafts and hid them.
I just spent a few minutes scrolling through some of the old post titles and now feel discouraged and think…
What a giant waste of time.
Then I start thinking…
You didn’t just waste a year writing that stupid blog that you’re ashamed of, you’ve actually wasted around 12 years. Because you should have been blogging since you started in 2010. Now what do you have to show for it?
You should email Jon Acuff and let him know you wasted five more years of your life than he did (because of course it’s a competition)… and ask if you can get the crown for worst (best?) overthinker.
Then I typically spiral downward from there pretty fast.
But you know what…
For some reason I’m deciding to think — and act — differently.
Because 10 years from now, when I’m 48, I’d rather have a body of work I put out into the world vs a bunch of drafts sitting in my digital closet.
They say all progress starts by telling the truth.
So I guess this post is me admitting I have a problem. A problem with overthinking and perfectionism.
But I’m making a decision today to change that today.
Even though as I type this I can hear those negative thoughts rising up again…
“You’re going to be 48 years old in 10 years. It’s too late dude. You 100% missed the boat on this. Go do something else with the rest of your time and life.”
“Why do you care so much what I do with my life anyway?”
“And by the way, who are you anyway?”
Are these my thoughts? The enemy? The resistance?
I don’t know. But I don’t like their attitude.
And this is my life.
So I get the final say here. And today I choose to hit publish.
Yes, I know nobody will see this. At least not for a long time.
But that’s not the point.
The point is to start publishing again before it’s too late.
So here we go…
No “daily post for 10 years” promise this time. I plan to adopt a much more sustainable practice this time. One that focuses more on quality than quantity. I don’t know what the publishing frequency will be yet.
What will this blog be about anyway?
Will it always be these weird introspective, existential crisis type of ramblings like this?
No. At least I hope not (for both our sakes).
But “what” I’ll be writing about is a fair question.
In fact, I’ve asked that question myself approximately 1,239,281 times over the last 10 years.
And if I knew exactly what it was going to be I’d tell you.
But in all honesty, I don’t.
There are certain topics I’m very interested in. And so I plan to follow my interests and curiosities but do it in a way that’s helpful to you, the reader.
Because I do realize that if all I do is publish things as an act of self-expression things can get a little weird.
Nothing wrong with self-expression.
But I want to help people too.
I’m the type of person who always wants to be growing and accomplishing new things.
So I want to help my readers do the same.
I’ll probably be writing for people like me…
So if you’re really smart and cool and funny you’ll probably fit right in.
(That was a joke).
Ok, time to stop writing.
Honestly, I think the best way to figure what this blog will be about is to simply start publishing. Thanks for joining me on this journey.