So 2014 ended up being a big year for me because I realized some goals that I had been working on for about two years. It felt good, no, it feels great. I also started writing for our local paper and moved from monthly Friday columns to bi-weekly Saturday columns, which was a personal win for me. I have received a lot of very positive feedback and acknowledgment on my writings, which has been encouragingly delightful. Writing is a very personal exercise for me, possibly for most, so when someone takes the time to provide positive feedback on how my musings have somehow helped them, made them laugh, showed them a different view or just made them feel good, it is the height of reward. And I am grateful, more grateful than I can likely express.
You see I have been writing for as long as I can remember, even from a young age I wrote stories or blurbs. My Mom gave me a pencil and paper to keep by my bed so if I had ideas in the middle of the night I could write them down easily. Writing is cathartic for me, it is also very calming. I can work out a lot of things while I’m writing them down.
When I was in high school one of my teachers accused me of plagiarizing my book report because he couldn’t believe I could write something that good, so I stopped writing. I still wrote papers as required at secondary and post-secondary school, but all recreational writing stopped. I stopped writing because I didn’t feel good about it anymore. The fact that someone thought that I would cheat and that I wasn’t smart enough to write something of high quality impacted my perception of my abilities to write.
I slowly began to write again with an annual Christmas letter in my mid-twenties, from which I received good feedback and even a job offer. Then I started to exercise my writing muscle with teams of people I managed, attempting to impart various forms of direction in positive ways. And again, I was pleasantly surprised by the positive responses. And over and over my best friend prodded me to just write. And over and over again, I would not, except in very specific circumstances.
And then I launched a full time consulting business and a friend of mine suggested a blog. I thought that might be fun, and so my blog began. And that was 74 weeks ago and 74 blogs ago. And wouldn’t you know it; I again received positive feedback on my writing. I made that mean that I was headed in the write direction; (pun intended)
Then just shy of a year into my blogging a colleague asked if I had ever thought of writing for our local newspaper. I responded with an assured yes, I had indeed thought many times of writing for the paper. Next thing I know I’m meeting with the Editor and discussing options and article ideas along with placements and rotations and my first deadline. I was nervous, but I was also sure this was a good thing.
The part I hadn’t thought about was how vulnerable I would feel writing for my local newspaper. And then I had to think about how I would write about personal things, because that is what I write about, in my local paper. I have endeavored to create a blog and a regular column that are based and built on a career littered with all different kinds of people and experiences and cultures. My goal is to shine a light on how we frame our days, our views and our teams. Essentially to share my own lessons, promote wonder and expand your notion of what’s possible and hopefully cause you to pay attention to your words, your behaviours, your thoughts and your dreams.
It has been some of the greatest advice I finally took from my best friend who continually said, ‘just write, just write and the rest will happen, just write.’ So thank you all for taking the time to read my writing, thank you for all of your positive responses and comments. Thank you for letting me just write.