Starting again.

(Below is a repost from Danny Gregory‘s blog. First, my thoughts:)

If I had to distill my personal philosophy or a truth that I’ve gleaned thus far, it would be “It just takes doing.” It’s true of baking, running, writing, drawing, reading, knitting or simply being a friend.

Yesterday, I chopped pounds of leeks, shallots, onions, carrots, fennel, celery root and herbs as brown rice bread baked. My soup and leek fritters weren’t going to exist if I didn’t grab that knife. Same with bread—a series of steps have to occur to rouse the starter from the fridge, build and develop the dough, divide and shape the loaves before shoving it into the oven for its final transformation. Dinner was fantastic, but, more importantly, it existed. The work was the getting there.

Yet, it’s so easy to forget. Too often I am lost in a fog of yearning for how things (or I) used to be, or whining about an allegedly unobtainable ideal or achievement. There’s no awareness that the path is right there. Granted, I may never be able to create EVERYthing I desire, but I can move in that direction.

Danny Gregory‘s post this morning (below) drove this home for me… especially as someone who gets mired in self-judgement and tends to look backwards at old accomplishments and fantasizes about future ones, but forgets to be active in the now.

First step, start doing.

Danny Gregory

The road ahead

If you haven’t gone to the gym in a long time, how do you start again?

If you haven’t done a drawing in a long time, how do you start again?

If you haven’t written a blog post in a long time …. how do you start again?

You start by starting. By picking up a pen, a dumbbell, and getting to work. There is no magic trick, there is no massive process for preparation. There is simply the active of sitting down at the computer, opening a new document, and starting to type. It may seem painful, it may seem scary, but all that misery goes away as the first letters march onto the screen.

“What I try to do is write. I may write for two weeks ‘the cat sat on the mat, that is that, not a rat.’ And it might be just the most boring and awful stuff. But I…

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