During the summer of 2014 I was convinced I was going to write a book. My first book. I had a topic, and I had ideas pouring out of my head. The passion to write a book was oozing out of me. I even made an announcement right here on my blog. “I’m Writing A Book” July 2014
I was gung-ho. I was all in. The ideas pouring out of my head were pure gold!
And then a few weeks passed. And a few more. And a few more.
I was still committed to writing the book. I even made it my “Push Goal” in January when I went through a program to help me determine and define my goals for 2015.
I took my notes from the previous six months and created an outline for the book. I divided the notes into the appropriate sections.
My trusty journal was with me every day so I could capture ideas and thoughts and quotes for the book.
But there was one problem.
The passion was gone.
Did I still want to write the book? You bet! This is something I’ve dreamed of for a couple of years. “I’m going to write a book!”
I tried. I really did. I sat down with my notes and laptop a few times. But I couldn’t move forward.
Without the passion for the topic, I was paralyzed. I couldn’t move forward. As much as I wanted to, I couldn’t continue.
So a few weeks ago I decided to stop. I told some friends. I told my wife. I told 2,200 friends in a closed Facebook group who I’ve been interacting with for almost two years.
Do you know what happened? Everyone who commented, and everyone I spoke with, including my wife, congratulated me for being able to set it aside. They know how badly I want to write. They know writing and speaking is what I’m supposed to be doing. They also knew something I didn’t. They knew setting aside the book would help me write more. They knew setting aside the book would help me feel free to be the person I need to be.
You see, the book I’m NOT writing is about encouragement. I’m passionate about pouring into others. The pressure I put on myself to write the book stopped me from being the encourager I want to be.
I was trying to write a book about encouragement, but I wasn’t encouraging anyone. Including myself.
Since setting the book aside I’ve been able to return to the activities that originally spurred the idea of writing the book.
I’ve talked to more people on the phone. I’ve talked to more people face-to-face. I’ve been intentional about touching base with people in real life and online.
I’m happier. I’m not stressed every time I do something on my day off not related to writing the book.
And one other thing has happened. I’ve written notes for the book in my journal almost every day.
So while I’m no longer writing the book, I’m making progress on writing the book. I can’t wait for you to read it. Eventually.
Have you ever set aside a project and reaped incredible rewards? Did you eventually go back and complete the project?