I’ve been struggling with sticking to schedules for all my life.
All my plans stuck at the second day of execution.
The truth is, the goal setting and the planning parts are usually ok. I stopped setting my goals too high when I was in kindergarten (like “getting up at 6 am and doing my homework until 8 am” so that I could “playing from 10 am to 10 pm…”). And I never had a problem to set my schedule to the minute, which I know now, was not so wise.
The reason that I could hardly get through the second day of the plan was mostly because my ideas usually ran out on that day.
No idea, no content.
See, I used to think that ideas are GIVEN by the mysterious force from beyond to the truly talented. And of course, I was one of the talented.
So I wasn’t worried that I’d have problem to get more ideas if I wanted to.
But the reality is brutal: without an idea with which I could draw the content out, I normally just forgot about the plan at all. (It’s too bad to have so much going on in your life, right?…)
This thought of “having too much going on in my life” is just BS. Seriously. For me, and for you too.
I know too many people who are doing many things for themselves on the side of their jobs and demanding family duties.
(I probably need some examples here, but I’m just going to leave this blank for now, since I have this post to make today to stick to my schedule… oh well…)
So the question really is: where do ideas come from? I have no content. I need ideas for creating content!
Here are two things I take as essentials for content generating:
Accumulation of input
If you are having enough input, any sort of input, there will be thoughts coming at you all the time. This is a universal knowledge.
But not just reading. Reading is important — literature, non-literature, news piece. All of that.
There are many other things that can be counted as your input. Anything that moves you, touches your heart.
Music, conversations with people who have great stories, movies, and just life experience in general, are great sources.
The key here is, you write down anything that pops in your head when you have input. That’s how ideas start to flow.
And before you know it, you see the dots lined up in some way — you are ready to put them out as a piece of content.
The myth of inspiration
Don’t wait for inspiration. It only comes at times, most of the times you are not “ready” to make them your reality.
Most writers tell you that they just work when they have to work. Inspiration is a myth. Because when you have an idea, it’s easy to note it down. But making it into something you can show to other people is the hard work that you need to have enough dedication to pull through.
So just read and write down stuff. Anything really.
Inspiration will hit you with a bat, or flow through you like a ghost.
The real trick is to notice it before it goes away and never show up in your mind again.
Another thing: try to find key word for a day’s work.
Work from there. Just one word. Into one thought, one line.
Then you might have something that will surprise you.
These two things above are about fast content generating. But they don’t have to be confined to the modern types of media.
I can see myself writing a book, better — a novel, with ideas that I got piled up from several books and articles I read, and movies I saw, or music I heard. Maybe I will have my poetry collection one day, where every inspiration was gathered from the small things that touched my heart in the deepest way during the years of me working at an ordinary job.
These are possible.
Keep the process simple. That’s the way to do.