Sunday, June 22, 2014

Paying attention?

I’m a writer. At least I claim to be. And part of being a writer is always learning how to be a better writer. So I took a class this week. The topic of discussion: turning your life experiences into a story — a story people might actually want to read someday. Everybody’s got a story worth reading. It’s just a matter of getting it out.

This week taught me one of the best ways to get your story out is to take a look back at some of the big (aka pivotal) moments that have crossed your path and left their mark. Looking back and thinking about big moments gets the wheels turning and the creative juices flowing.

A little warning though — If you do this, be careful. There might be some stuff back there you haven’t looked at for a while. I think it’s best to just rip the band-aid off and see what happens.

In my experience, a big moment just kind of happens, most of the time when you’re not looking. And when it does, you know things will never be the same. And big moments mean something different for everybody. They can be all sunshiny and self-affirming. Or, they can tear you to shreds. Either way, the impact is permanent.

You can probably think of one or two without thinking too hard. I know I’ve had a few, or fifty, myself.

Most big moments sit politely in the background, there if you need them, but most of the time quiet and waiting. But there are always a few that are always there, right at the top of the pile, never too far from top of mind. Like the really big one about twenty years ago that kicked me squarely in the balls. Just like a literal kick in the balls, that pain gradually got worse right before it went away. Yeeouch! And the one about a decade ago that almost took me out. Close call. 

It’s always the big moments you don’t have to look too far for that teach you the most about who you are.

If you’re paying attention, they happen all the time. Maybe twenty-five years ago. Maybe this morning while you were drinking coffee, staring out the window. That’s the key though — paying attention. They’re there, and they’ll keep showing up. Try not to miss them, because they’re a pretty big part of your much bigger story.

My most recent, top-of-the-pile big moment happened last December, when I turned around and there she was. And I said hello.


No comments:

Post a Comment