Thursday, March 18, 2010

You're Even Better Than You Know

About four years ago, a group of friends encouraged me to take part in a half-marathon at Disneyland. Let me get this out there: I am NOT an athlete. In fact, I'm the complete opposite of an athlete. My first thought was no way!

But for years I've had this desire to push myself into things that at first seem impossible. It started when I decided I would finish my undergraduate degree in three years instead of four. Since then, I've been challenging myself to go beyond my expectations of myself. I figured the Disneyland Half-Marathon was a way to challenge myself, so I decided to go for it. I completed that race in under 3 1/2 hours, and even though I said it would be my last, this past weekend, I participated in my third half-marathon. I'm even better than I thought I was!

The same thing has applied to my writing life. When I set out to write my first novel back in my sophomore year of college, it seemed so daunting. Could I start with a blank page and end up with hundreds of pages of readable material? I knew others did it, but I didn't think I had it in me.

I'll be honest, that first attempt probably wasn't readable. I still love the story, but technically, it leaves much to be desired. But that doesn't matter, because since then I have stared at a blank sheet of paper (though I've graduated to a blank computer screen) and have written nearly a dozen books. Some will never see the light of day, but, in my opinion, each one has been better than the last.

There is much wisdom in that old saying, "You can do anything if you put your mind to it."

Don't ever succumb to fear. If you think you can't do something, it is the perfect motivation to prove to yourself that you can. You are probably better than you know.

On a side note, visit me at my personal blog where I will be discussing my trip to China. Prepare yourself for tons of pictures!

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