writing makes me anxious.
As a rule, I like to write because it challenges me. I don’t find it fun, or easy; nor can I just sit down and expel words. Which is interesting, because as I take walks or read things that inspire me, I have words, sentences, paragraphs just floating around in my mind, begging to be written down. But once there is a keyboard/piece of paper/person/recording device in front of me, I choke… the idea of having this specific arrangement of words set in stone (as opposed to the free-form they assume in my mind) rattles me out of writing anything of substance. Take this post, for example. I took a long walk around my neighborhood last night, and thought about these very words… in my mind, words merged into beautiful sentences, and coherent thoughts, and yet sitting down to write took an unbelievable amount of effort; I was paralyzed, yet again.
In casual conversation, if I mention that I blog, I generally say that it’s because I love to write, and that I blog to keep myself in writing mode, so I can stay accustomed to regularly producing material. But really, I don’t love writing… Rather, I think I am working on fully accepting the discomfort of it.
An article I read in the New York Times recently discusses the benefits of taking yourself out of your comfort zone and entering the ‘stretch’ zone where you are challenging your brain — Writing definitely puts me in the stretch zone. I don’t know that I will ever truly love writing, or be accustomed to writing, enough to consider myself out of the ‘stretch zone’ when I’m doing it, but I’m realizing that’s a good thing. After all, I think its the discomfort that keeps me coming back for more!