I was listening to an episode of The Tim Ferriss Show featuring Safi Bahcall when I heard something that really stuck out to me as I began this endeavor to build a writing (and posting) habit. Safi likes acronyms to remember things or help them stick, and the one he mentioned that stuck was “FBR.”
He basically acknowledged that after he had done what could arguably be a sufficient amount of research and done enough planning, he just needed to get going on the actual writing process, which was often the most difficult step. He’s not
It’s always easier to Google more information, to look up/buy/check out more books that could arguably be considered research or prep work for the final product. But the point comes when the rubber needs to meet the road.
As the author James Clear puts it in his book Atomic Habits:
I refer to this as the difference between being in motion and taking action. The two ideas sound similar, but they’re not the same. When you’re in motion, you’re planning and strategizing and learning. Those are all good things, but they don’t produce a result.
At the end, you need to just start…….writing. So that’s what I took to heart from Safi’s interview, and for better or worse, despite the fact that I’ve got eight draft posts kicking around in the pipeline, I’m gritting my teeth, stopping the endless research and resulting rabbit holes and trying to write (and complete) a post. No matter how right or wrong they feel when I post them.
I swear this isn’t just a rip off of the title for @RyanHoliday‘s latest book (which I haven’t yet had a chance to read yet, but am so looking forward to); however, it is the truth for beginning to build a habit.
I probably picked one of the worst times possible to begin this new odyssey into blogging and writing (even if the main point is to begin by doing it for myself regardless of audience or lack thereof). I was heading off on a very long family vacation with very little downtime (even less than I originally thought possible) followed immediately by the holiday season, which can take on a life of its own.
I’ll be honest and say that writing this post is about the last thing I want to be doing after getting five hours of sleep last night (on top of four the night before and four the night before that…) combined with walking over 25 thousand steps today according to my Fitbit, and prepping for another day of doing pretty much the same if not more tomorrow.
BUT……if I’m really going to try to build this habit of writing consistently to try to improve the skills I’m trying to improve and seeing where it goes, tonight was probably the best shot this week, given the schedule we’ve got going forward.
That doesn’t mean this will be the magnum opus I’d love to present in blog form, filled with wit, humor, poignancy and prepped to go viral. In fact, this will end very shortly after this sentence.
The fact is, getting in the reps matters when you’re talking new habits, and this post is that rep. Not a great rep, but a rep nonetheless. And, sometimes that really reluctant, objectively terrible rep is what makes all the difference.
Hi all. My name is Matt, and I’m – you guessed it – a parent. I have a 5-year-old (going on 15) daughter named Maya and this is my first attempt at a blog. My aim is to build a few habits and see where they take me.
First, I’m attempting to build a consistent writing habit. I had been attempting to do so in private Word docs and found that I just wasn’t being consistent with the habit. By creating a public-facing blog and working to set a schedule for publishing posts (stay tuned for that once I’ve had a chance to wrap my head around what I’ve just jumped into!) on a regular basis, I hope to add a little accountability to this habit. (Also, it’d be nice to actually get better at the actual ACT of writing)
Second, I’m attempting to put to words some of the daily struggles I have as a parent. I feel too often in this Instagramified world we are constantly bombarded by posts from parents that make their lives look amazing and perfect, and make parenting look easy. This has not been my experience, and I think it’s a worthwhile exercise to share some parenting realness. Let’s be clear – my daughter is actually pretty amazing. All told, she’s actually a really great, and a really easy kid. This blog will NOT be a bitch-fest or a nonstop outlet for complaining about parenting, since much of the time I have great and wonderful stories to share and will do so. However, because Maya is usually such an easy kid, it makes it all the harder for me when she suddenly goes into meltdown mode since it’s not something I’m grappling with all the time. Hopefully putting out there the good, the bad, the mistakes, the lessons learned, and most importantly the wins will help me make sense of this crazy endeavor that is parenting.
I won’t bore you all (and by all right now, it’s likely just me talking to myself for now!) with more at this point, since future posts will fill you in more on who I am, who my family is, and what we’re up to. In the end, just taking a leap online to say: “Hello, world!”