Listening to Myself

I haven’t felt like writing lately. Maybe it’s the 90 degree weather we had this last weekend or maybe my mind just isn’t talking to me…


If you know me, you know I loathe the heat. If I were a character in the Game of Throne books, I would be right at home in Winterfell. “Winter is coming” you say? Oh really? Well, strike up the band and let us celebrate because that sounds fantastic! Plus I would have a dire wolf for a pet and I love wolves. I grew up with two wolves named Klumka and Otah. Heart of my hearts, they were two of my best friends.

Where was I? Oh yes, writing. Funny how the mind quiets and retreats into itself at times. You find yourself asking yourself, “Okay Mind – where are you and what are you doing? I want to be creative. I want to write and yet you give me nothing.” You tap on your head as if to wake up the brain but the mind resists and remains silent. “Helloooooo in there!” Still nothing. So you sigh and go back to whatever it was you were doing. You are ready and willing but the mind is not.

And then. AND then, right in the middle of the night or just when you are elbow-deep in dirt, driving to the store or mowing the lawn, the mind suddenly starts jumping around up and down, pushing against the inside of your head and singing at the top of its lungs until you either wake up or stop what you are doing.

At first you try to ignore it, slightly peeved that it has taken so long and chooses NOW of all times to speak up. “Oh so NOW you have something to tell me? NOW you want to play? Really?”  Only problem is now you are the resistant one. You aren’t in the mindset to sit down and listen to what your mind has to say. You’ve got work to do, darn it! So you keep going about your business until the mind starts slapping cymbals trying to get your attention. “I GOT SOMETHING FOR YOU!”, the mind screams out. “Come on! I know you want it! It’s an idea! Come on! It’s a good one! Grab it while it’s hot! Grab your notepad, a scrap of paper, anything, just get it down!!!” Internally you know you should. It’s that prompting, that internal voice, the muse (oddly for me it is the voice of Patrick Stewart) whispering in your ear. “I have a present for you if only you would open it and see!!! See it, hear it, feel it, make it so!”

If you’re smart, you pay heed to it. You stop whatever you are doing, pull the car over (if possible), record the idea into your phone, write it down on a piece of paper or anything you can find – like your hand.  The important thing is you GET IT DOWN.

Just as with gardening, once the seed has been planted  if you don’t tend to it, water it, nurture it, it cannot grow. It will never be. The same goes for an idea. The mind gives you the seed of an idea. Then it is up to you to nurture it. How big it will grow depends on you.

0 thoughts on “Listening to Myself

  1. Hello, dear Tracy. I hope you’re finding some respite from this heat. I have to say that I actually enjoyed the heat this weekend because it kept the (incredibly infuriating) black flies at bay.

    I completely hear you on this writing predicament. Like always, I find much inspiration in your words and this post. It’s time to nurture some of my thoughts.

    I hope you’re nurturing all of your wonderful ideas and thoughts. Love to you, Tracy. xoxo

  2. Well, as you know, I’ve been EXTREMELY silent on my blog lately. Life is way too insane to take a moment and string some coherent sentences together. Figures though, because if I did have a moment, I would have plenty to talk about. I’m sorry you’re hating the heat – send it our way; you know I love it!

    • Amanda, you can HAVE the heat! 🙂 LOL! You have been busy, I know that but I still love reading your blog when you post. SO POST POST POST! Even if it is a sentence!

  3. the muse always waits until you are distracted to creep on in… all the best thoughts come when you are doing something else. but you do have to stop everything when they come, record them before they are lost. when my mind feels empty, i like to think of it as taking time to refill itself, sometimes it fills up quickly, other time in slow, painful drops. but it always spills over eventually. (patrick stewart has the best voice)

    • Thanks, Kelly! Patrick Stewart is the greatest. I am learning to stop and get it down. That has always been something I’ve neglected to do. But I’m learning!

  4. my muse is devious like that. she waits till i’m completely overloaded, then she pops out with something brilliant. yup, i’ve learned to always have a tape recorder within reach when driving, and a pen and paper within reach everywhere else. except the shower. haven’t quite figured that one out yet. but i need to. and i get in my own way, too, thinking (there’s your first clue) that i have to produce something earth-shatteringly brilliant every. single. day when what is sustainably brilliant is to notice and preserve by way of photo and writing the littllest little ordinary everyday things. it’s so simple, really. we make it so damn hard.

  5. I love how you describe the mind that leaps at night… when you least expect it, when you are least ready for it. This is why I keep a notebook by the bed: to capture those thoughts that want to play when the rest of me is fast asleep. I love it when your mind speaks – or, as Mark puts it, when it listens.

    • Thanks, Roxanne. I’m getting into the habit of keeping a notebook/notepad everywhere to now and forcing myself to jot down ideas when I have them. For too long, I just shrugged them off – told myself – oh I’ll remember – only to forget. *sigh. Live and learn! LOL! 😀

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