You must find some way to put your dreams in motion
Why I felt the urge to change into my Sketchers while I was driving, I don’t know. I can only assume that I decided I might as well accomplish something during the eternal wait at the traffic light. At least I put my car in park at the traffic light to do so.
But forgetting to put the car back in drive? Downright embarrassing.
The light turned green. My car didn’t move. I couldn’t make it. My right foot, neatly clad in a freshly donned black sneaker, pressed on the gas pedal to no avail. The cars behind me beeped impatiently. Despite my frantic efforts, I didn’t move. The honking grew more insistent but I was paralyzed. I shrank into my seat.
Just before the light turned red, two cars scraped past me in the other lane to get through the intersection. I felt their indignation. The next opportunity for green was three minutes away.
I turned my attention to my own plight. What was wrong with my car? I looked to my gear shift to put the car in park, thinking I’d turn off the engine and then restart it to see if that solved the problem. (I’ve learned something from the IT folks at work.) That was when I saw “Park.”
It’s hard to move a parked car.
A body in motion?
That was my train of thought as I showered after swimming this morning. I had packed my black dress shoes in my gym bag but grabbed my black sneaks as I saw them near the door on my way out of the house. The sneaks were in the car; they’d be cute and comfy to wear as I did an hour-long walking meeting that morning.
So as I squeezed conditioner through my curly locks, I imagined the above scenario, felt the angst it created and decided to wait until I got to work before I changed into my Sketchers.
But the image of me pressing the gas pedal while my car was in park impacted me still.
My niece Megan had told me that it’s easier to steer something that’s in motion. She’s starting a new business; I’m writing my first book. She’s got her first clients; I don’t even have a topic.
“You have to start moving toward your goals,” she said, encouraging me to get started. “Give God something to bless.”
I know I’ve got to put my dreams in drive. Earlier this week in a meeting with my boss, who happens to know I plan to write a book in my free time this year, asked how it was going.
“I haven’t even started,” I said. “I mean, I know I want to write a book. I just don’t know what I want to write about.”
“You just have to start,” he said.
Even though my planning indicated February’s focus as “lay the foundation for book writing,” I had added “land on an idea” as part of this month’s goals. Silly me. Even my own planner was conspiring against me.
In the coaching call with my fellow writing academy peers that night, I asked how I could know what I should write. I expressed my frustration. I admitted I wanted to write fiction but had never written a single fictional thing in all my life. (I did tell my mother a completely fabricated story once. The story about that here under the heading, “She forgave.“)
The academy leader said maybe I should give myself permission to start small, such as write a short fictional story or a novella.
One small step
How about a few fictional paragraphs to start a blog post? Small enough?
As I experienced anxiety about an imaginary situation in my head, I realized that I create fiction every time I conjure up a reason to worry about the future. (That seems like a whole new blog post topic!) I decided to capture my imaginings from my shower as a fictional account in writing.
You know what this means, don’t you? (I mean, besides starting this blog with a falsehood.) I’ve started — small as it is — my life as a fiction writer.
I’ve got my “car” out of park so I can get moving. And be moved, wherever God wants steers me. Now I need to step on the gas.
What about you, Dear Reader? What’s got you stuck in park? What small move will put you in motion toward your goal?
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