Stumble, stumble, trip

Well, this is embarrassing. What was it, six days before the end of August? And then, suddenly, it’s September 4 and I haven’t blogged for over a week, let alone completed my self-imposed blogging challenge.

Although I have to say, this is the best I’ve done on a self-imposed challenge to date.

I think I have the technique all worked out. Get up early, get breakfast, type up a post in fits and starts in between sips of coffee. Spend those little pockets of wasted time brainstorming future posts and planning my publishing schedule. Use a variety of tools, just so I can’t get bored with just one, and understand that most posts turn out waaay better if they’re written in two or more sessions. After that, it’s all about momentum.

One of the few things I remember from my Year 9 General Science class is inertia. Inertia is the force that keeps an object in motion moving, or a stationary object stuck in one place. It’s a physics term, but ever since I first heard it I’ve been applying it to real life.

I happen to find it particularly relevant when talking about exercise and eating well.

Inertia is the thing that compels us to continue with our habits. It’s the thing that keeps me setting my alarm for 6:30 in the morning, even though I might not actually get my ass out of bed until 7am. The thing with inertia is that once you stop, it’s really hard to get moving again, even if it is a gradual thing like hitting the snooze button.

Have you ever played kick-to-kick with a soccer ball? Yeah, in that instance, you have to stop the ball, get control of it, before you can get it going where you want it to go. Most of the time (unless you’re actually a talented sportsperson, which I’m not), if you try to kick the ball straight back, it goes flying wherever it pleases, and gives you a numb ankle, to boot.

I think my analogy is getting away from me, but here’s what I’m trying to say: Sometimes you have to stop, and take stock, and adjust your trajectory. Once you’re headed in the right direction, however, you have to open the throttle and let your inertia take you where it can. Don’t hit the snooze button and let yourself slide gradually to a stop. I did that just last week, and I managed to cut out my favourite part of the day – banging out a blog post in fits and starts, in between sips of coffee.

Historically, I’m very (very) good at letting myself slide to a stop, and when that happens, it’s usually the work of a couple of hours and a block of chocolate to convince myself that the thing I was trying to do wasn’t very important anyway. But I’m starting to think that if something is important enough for you to start, it’s important enough for you to finish. Even if it is just you seeing where it might be able to take you.

Sliding to a stop is just another way we let our fears get the best of us. I’m kinda tired of that happening.

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