The Question to Ask When You Don't Want to Do What You Want to Do

Jeezus, I really don't feel like writing right now!

It's later than I like to write, so I'm worried that I won't get to it - that just makes me not want to do it at all. It makes me want to sleep.

Mike is working next to me, but I generally prefer to write alone. I feel like I should desensitize myself to that - but I'd rather do it some other time.

None of the seed ideas I have are interesting to me right now and I haven't really had any great thoughts today to work with.

I want to write, but just can't find that unique energy that let's me do it.


The Big Question: "What WOULD I Do?"


Ok, fine - I won't write today.

But, now that I've taken the pressure off, what WOULD I do if I wanted to push through this?

What can I figure out now that will help me out next time I feel this way?

What will I realize would have actually been so easy to do once this moment has past?

If a friend came to me wanting an objective perspective on what to do when she's in this position, what would I tell her?

If my body were a chess piece, what's the next move I would have it make?

What if I release all the obligation and just think about the possible actions at my disposal?


Every time I miss a day of writing, I think "Why didn't I just type a word?" Who knows what that word would have become.

What I WOULD do if I were going to push through this is just open up my seed ideas and type the first word that comes to mind for each one, until an idea compels me to type a second.

Instead of trying to come up with something original, I would write where I was when I had that thought and what spurred it. My goal would be to conjure up the same feelings that got me thinking the idea would be worth writing about in the first place.

If I still can't find a message worth writing about on the topic, I would just write about what I assume some other person's message might be - that might at least stir my opinions up and get me responding.

If I did even just one of these, I WOULD be damn proud of myself for bravely exploring the barren wasteland of my uninspired mind.


Releasing the tension of actually having to do something now allows us to see possible next steps in their true color, stripped of their mental baggage - as merely options at our disposal.

Suddenly, you realize how easy it would be to take that next single step forward. Besides, I've already accepted not writing at all today, I may as well fail 10 words in, instead of 0. Right?

Next time you want to do something but just can't muster the creative forces, stop trying so hard and instead think about what you WOULD do if you could choose your every action objectively.

Sign-up for email updates

Submit your email address below and you'll never miss a new article.