Except, there’s a slight problem. Over the course of those six months, I fell out of the practice of writing blog posts. Sure, I was still writing and editing for my book, but that is a totally different style of crafting the written word. So, here I am, with the time, desire, and motivation to blog but sometimes the writing feels clunky and awkward.
Luckily, I know that this is just a part of the process of reestablishing a skill or habit. Here are some thoughts to keep in mind when you return to an activity—be it test prep, academics, a sport, a musical instrument, or writing in a certain style—after a break.
1. When you stop practicing, you get rusty.
It might sound intuitive, but it’s true. There’s a reason why athletes, musicians, and writers practice every day. Accept the fact that the activity won’t feel as comfortable when you first return to it, and that it’s okay.
2. It isn’t helpful to compare yourself to anyone—including you as you were before the break.
You are where you are right now. That’s your starting point, regardless of where you’ve been in the past.
3. You didn’t lose everything you’ve learned.
Even though you’re rusty, the same skills you had to help you create something you were proud of before are still inside of you. It might take some time to get back into shape, but it’s totally possible to do so.
4. Don’t let great be the enemy of good.
In those moments when you want to be back in top form and feel understandably frustrated that you aren’t, don’t let fear of imperfection stand in the way of showing up for yourself and the task today. If you’ve taken a break from your test prep and you realize that your scores have dropped, don’t let the negative feelings you experience stand in the way of your continuing to practice. We all want to be great. In the meantime, be happy with the opportunity to be good. It’s only through showing up that your skills will return.
5. Don’t let good be the enemy of done.
There will be other days when “good” seems overly generous. That’s okay. Just get it done. Learn from your mistakes, and try again tomorrow.
On that note, I’m back to posting blogs!
From now on, I will be posting twice a month, on the second and fourth Wednesday of each month. If you have questions you would like to see addressed in the blog, be in touch!
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