I was looking at the statistics on my website the other day and saw an interesting number. 99 posts. That makes this one number 100 and I’m kind of excited about that!! 100 posts is about 75,000 words I’ve written. That is enough for a reasonable sized book. And somewhere in the neighborhood of 200 pictures I’ve taken and posted (well not all the pictures were mine, but close enough to 200)! It never really crossed my mind when I started that I might accumulate such a collection of musings.
When I started this in the fall of 2012 I don’t know what I expected. I know that I had this innate understanding that I like to write, but I didn’t have any idea what it would feel like to be accountable to write something meaningful every week. I knew what I wanted to write was of interest to me, but I remember having some self-doubt as to whether I could hold the attention of an audience for an extended period. I also knew that as I moved into my next career (paradoxically referred to as retirement) that I would want to have a web presence on which to build a knowledge/wisdom based business, but I didn’t know that this motivation would quickly become secondary to the act of expressing myself with the intent of contributing to a greater dialog.
Above all what strikes me right now about this blog thing is to wonder …
When is the last time I did something
meaningful 100 weeks in a row?
I think the answer to that question is never. Which just begs another question …
What is it that is so compelling about
writing that it has kept my attention?
I think there are some interesting answers to this question which I’d like to share:
- Creativity – I like the act of assembling a post. For me it is about story telling … about turning real life situations into labs for discovering something about us as leaders. There needs to be something engaging, something real life about each story.
- Learning – each time I post something it is an exercise in applied learning. I notice something in real life, and then start thinking about I might know that informs me about the situation, and then spend the time thinking through how real life and theory line up into a new realization.
- Accountability – I didn’t expect this one, but as soon as I started to write publicly I experienced a blinding glimpse of the obvious … people that know me will read what I wrote and then watch whether I live into my words. Rather than being intimidating it is a source of focus for me … will I live up to what I write?
- Dialog – I have loved that some readers comment on my posts, and often with thought provoking ideas that stimulate an exchange. Even better when more than one reader combines on a single thread! There is much to be learned in such dialogue.
I think all of these are real in some way to me and have really contributed to my continued engagement with my writing, but I’m not sure any of them really capture the true essence of why I do this. I think the answer to that might be found in one word … passion.
I really love to write. For me it is one of the most natural and authentic ways of being for me. It offers me a forum to engage in all of the ingredients of living and leading essentially that you’ve likely seen me express a number of times here before.
With my writing I am fortunate to have a weekly opportunity to …
- Connect – can I write something that will engage someone else’s imagination and inspire dialog?
- Create – I’ve come to understand an inner need to be creative. I probably always had it, but now I can see it!
- Contribute – I’m driven by the opportunity to write something that is meaningful to others. I want to know that I’ve moved at least one person just a little bit.
- Express – this was the real eye opener! I thought I was good at this, but realized that the blog has been my really authentic form of expression.
- Experience – what I love most is that it is a voluntary community that chooses to form around a set of ideas, and that community is a source of such richness in my personal development. Thank you!!
As Leading Essentially is at its core about leadership, I wonder if I spend enough time helping others find their passion. I know in my core that these five essential actions inspire true passion … do I seek to understand how team members long to engage their world in these dimensions? Do I set time aside for us to explore these together? Do I encourage them to take the time in their day to delve into them on their own?
Thank you again for supporting me in my personal passion! I wish the same pursuit for everyone … how do you engage in living into yours?