Hearing others discuss writing projects. Judging myself by how others are progressing with their writing. Using classmates as barometers. Comparing myself with their accomplishments, realizations and understanding of the written journey. Watching silently as they discuss where they have sunk or risen on a current project and trying to realign where I am by their sacrifices, triumphs and failures. But actually listening? A hard thing for me to do. Let me repeat that, listening is a very difficult skill for me. And oh yeah, allowing myself to find my own writing path along the way that I was destined to follow without judging my craft against what everyone else is doing, this might actually happen. Defensive, maybe? Something I finally learned about me, myself and I.
We are each our own toughest critic, shrewdest judge and biggest tormentor. I know I am. Relaxing the reins and accepting who you are and where you are in the journey at the moment is difficult, but it needs to be done or it will become tougher to learn and move forward. Realizing that everyone is in a different position along the path, whether they are just starting out and have the basic skills or they need to polish some areas first, or they are already accomplished writers working on their masterpiece, has no bearing on where you are along the path. But taking the time and actually listening to their story might give you some insight that you can file away and use later. They may actually have something that will help you find yourself along the way if you just listen.
My friend and fellow writing classmate posted a fabulous piece on her blog this week. It was about finding her voice. How to find your own voice. Not someone else’s, not what you think others want to hear how it should be said, but your very own signature. The post wasn’t something she had worked long and hard to craft or full of deep, profound words, but it was from her heart, her words, her voice. It resonated through me with true meaning and helped me to understand who I was and where I am in my writing journey. That I’m fine where I am on my path right here, right now. At this moment. And I want to thank her for writing those words with her very own voice and sharing them. Thank you Cindy. And Elva, this was a Blessing. – Click here to view her post.