Category Archives: keep going

What’s Your Miracle Dust?

That stuff you sprinkle when you need to move on and smile?
I saw this picture and I laughed out-loud. I think I was sitting at my desk about to take lunch and I’m not the quietest person in the world. My coworker must believe I’m nuts at times, mumbling to myself, singing to myself, whistling, oh well. He’s probably used to it by now.
But, miracle dust is a great thought. How some days we can feel overwhelmed with emotion, feeling like we’re getting no where and we wonder at times, is it worth it? Should I give up? Should I just be okay with where I am?
Miracle dust is the stuff in our lives that breaks up a train of bad thoughts. A really great memory from the past. A moment you did something great. Maybe a song you heard, words from a friend, and a hug works too. It’s easy to go backwards. It’s easy to let our minds get the best of us. I can get down when I think about where I want to be and how I’m not quite there and I’m working so hard.

When I write, I feel like I’m reaching into this million piece puzzle box, and I stick my hand in the box, and I pull out something pretty and perfect. But then I wonder, what do I do with this piece? Where do I place it so someone else will see it too? And some days, you just have to try, even if you end up throwing the whole thing back in the box.  

I don’t think I’m alone in feeling like I have to start over some days.  I learn each time I do start over, I actually move faster and get ahead before I know I moving past where I once stood. It’s a mix of crazy determination and belief.  Every writer, or dreamer, or entrepreneur who’s ever lived their dreams says, you have to keep going. So keep going, pull out a little miracle dust if you have to and sprinkle as necessary. 


Caught In A Moment? Erase Later.

This post is for my facebook friend Dawn. Thanks for the tip, my friend.
I played soccer in high school. Left-midfield because I am left-handed and naturally left-footed. Built for endurance, I could run, I could set a pace and stick with it forever, another player forever, and I kind of liked to steal the ball, too.
I remember the field of grass with the white painted lines, me staring straight ahead at the goal post at the far end as I shadowed a girl from the opposite team, pushing forward with her. The crowd roared, the bodies a blur in the bleachers to the side, and the ref stuck it out somewhere close by, ready to stop the game if anyone broke a rule.
My foot darted between a pair of legs and snagged the ball away, with me turning and rushing fast, ahead of the girl even faster, and I plowed.
I didn’t stop to think, did I run the right way? Maybe I should have cut to the right instead of the left—or pulled the ball back and spun in instead of out. The picture is in your mind. You know the goal and you move toward it in the game. If you second guess yourself before you move, then you might not get moving and miss your chance.
Writing and soccer are sort of the same—in principle anyway.
You see this picture in your head, you know your plot points and you’ve developed your characters so well you practically live them. If you stop yourself, hung up on a word before you  finish a chapter, and most importantly the story, the momentum might fall and the picture begins to fade away.
A first draft is a field of grass with a goal at the end. Your fingers are the instrument, pushing the keys or the pencil and you move, flying with your ideas and writing straight ahead. You could stop to revise your word choice, but just like the game, with a first draft, it’s best to keep writing. Mistakes will happen and there’s always time to fix them when you’re done. Also like the game, you can’t always go back and see the picture as clearly as you did the first time.
I have two tips today, useful ones you could apply to any activity you love to do. First, don’t stop your flow, and two, make mistakes. It’s the intention that matters and mistakes are ways to learn and grow once you’re done in the moment. So keep going, let loose, and don’t be afraid to let yourself get caught up in the moment and the feel of the world around you. You can always find your way back.


Monday Motivation: Staring Challenge in the Face

Wouldn’t it be awesome if you woke up and your day was absolutely flawless? You’re mood was perfect. None of the kids were crying. You didn’t have to iron that shirt. The coffee pot didn’t make a giant mess all over the counter and you got in your car, zoomed off to work and there was no bumper to bumper traffic; in fact everyone just sort of moved out of your way, or your car sprouted hovercraft wheels and you zoomed right over it(totally my dream once while I tapped my fingers on my steering wheel). Maybe when you got to work, you were in that meeting and everyone listened. Everyone agreed your solution was the best. You just became a hero on the spot.


I’ve been known to swear at traffic before. I’ve spilled coffee all over my shirt. And ironing? It’s one of the things I don’t like doing because I’ve tended to burn a shirt or two in my past. Even my husband’s shirts and pants. EEK! Meetings? I’ve led them. And once I had a lady start crying in the middle of a meeting, right out of nowhere. She didn’t want to go to work anymore. And this morning, one of my kiddos is down for the count heavy with the flu, eyes watery and nose running, body aches, a moderate fever. Not to mention we’re working on potty training the wee one and that is a HUGE challenge all by itself.

I’m thinking about challenges today. Deadlines. Pressures. How we deal with people we’re around when we feel the heat. How I respond when my little girl, a giant handful, is screaming at the top of her lungs about how she refuses to go on the potty. We sit. We try. And she gets off and goes in her pants two seconds later. So this time, we’re using bubbles as a distraction technique. A great suggestion by a coworker by the way.

I love this Michael Jordan quote. Heck, growing up, I plain loved Michael Jordan. All he had to do was step out on the court and I’d get all giddy. I remember the excitement I felt every time I watched him dunk a ball. Maybe it was his giant smile in all the commercials and his bright eyes that smiled just as big. It could have been Bugs Bunny because I loved cartoons—who knows, but I liked him.

So when he says words like this, it really makes me think. I wonder about the reason why I didn’t succeed in the past. I wonder about the reasons in every challenge why I stopped or got frustrated and why I hate ironing so much. It’s that human thing again. We are on fire the first time. We’re a little shaky the next time. And maybe the third time we try, we end up totally pulling away because it didn’t work. Again.

Failure. Burnt clothes. Angry attitudes. And a warm bed that just might keep me there after the alarm has gone off. Ugh. But it’s all part of the process. Not everyone is going to agree with me, or get out of my way on the road, or want to change their life in order to go potty in the pot because it’s easier for me—sometimes it’s that stupid iron. Oh well. I just have to laugh. I have to shake it off. And I’ll keep trying.

Who Knew People Actually Studied the Psychology of Waiting?

It’s like role call. Waiting to hear your name. Waiting to get off the bench on the sidelines and show everybody out in the audience, what you’re made of—to score. There’s ups and down, you feel hope and then rejection when what you’re standing around anxiously for doesn’t show up. 

Waiting games can get to you. The adrenaline builds up slowly. You can feel your heart pulse in your ears. You breathe faster. You feel warmer—totally depending on that one person to give you a chance.

I’m writing today because no matter where we are in life we’re always waiting for something. You’re first or last baby to be born. You’re new car you’ve been saving for years to buy. A house? A new job? Maybe a new semester in school to start over again and swear, the next time, you’ll get that A.

I’m waiting. I’m biding my time and continue to write up a storm. I’ve written two short stories and I’ve started my next trilogy. This one’s better. This one is based on a couple of eighth grade girls I tutored back in school.

So I guess my point today is about the next step and what you do when you wait. No matter what step it is, there has to be one and I’m trying to take my own advice—

To continue stepping somewhere—

To keep moving forward no matter what—

And to fill my brain with other things I love—

People were right when they said dreams never came easy.

And if you’re interested in the science formula of waiting, here’s what I found:

S = P – E.

In this formulation, ‘S’ stands for satisfaction, ‘P’ for perception and ‘E’ for expectation.