Time That Is Not Our Own

It’s a brand New Year, in a brand new decade and I don’t know about you guys but I have no more time to waste. I’ve been thinking a lot about the time that we spend doing things that do not lend themselves to the purpose that we are placed on this earth for, whatever that purpose may be for you. We let our presumed obligations and even our loving hearts guilt us into giving time to things that will not eventually bear fruit and often leaves us with unfinished goals.

I use to believe that to think of myself first would be completely selfish and just not being a good servant of God and the purpose that he has for me. However, in having a recent conversation with a friend of mine, Ms. L., I remembered something very important. She reminded me that I am God’s child too. I mean it’s not that I don’t know that already but sometimes I forget that focusing on me doesn’t mean that I suddenly don’t care about others. Oftentimes we are more worried about tending to someone else’s needs (especially if you have children) and having compassion for what other people might want that we forget about what might be best for us.

When it comes to following our dreams and living out our purpose, we tend to put time into things, and often people, who take us away from what it is we are supposed to be focused on. We feel like we owe them that time, our time, when in reality, we don’t owe anyone else our time. In fact our time is not even ours to give away. The time that we have here on this earth is God’s time, in which he is entrusting us to accomplish certain goals and tasks, at certain intervals of our lives, for the betterment of an end result that is not even for us to see.

This is in no way me saying that other people don’t matter. In fact it is quite the opposite. Sometimes what we are supposed to be spending our time on will eventually better the lives of someone else who needs it. However, if we are not in the right place in our journey, at the precise time that we were designated to get there, then we will have missed that opportunity to be the blessing in someone else’s life that we were supposed to be, all because we devoted time to something else that was not even our mission to begin with.

We shouldn’t be made to feel guilty if we can not devote time to things or people the way that we might have been able to when we weren’t sure what our purpose was. Time is precious and it’s not promised to anyone and we have to be careful with what we do with it because there are important things that need to be done while we are still here to do them. The time that you have been given is the time that God has given you in order to do with it what he wants you to do with it. We don’t owe that time to anyone else. So this year, let’s start placing the focus back on ourselves and let’s not waste anymore time that isn’t ours to waste in the first place. Until next time… #BeFocused #BeMindful #BeProductive

Jimmetta Carpenter 

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The Element of Control

Element of Control

I keep wondering if success has an age attached to it. If there is a certain age that if you haven’t reached a certain level of success by that time then you are doomed to be unsuccessful at everything that you attempt. Is there an expiration date on the possibility of succeeding at what you want in life?

I don’t think that I can recall a time that I didn’t have outrageous and over the top plans for my life. My goals were always (as I was constantly told by the non-believers surrounding me) beyond my physical reach. It never used to matter what other people said I couldn’t achieve because I knew different. However, at some point, when the dreams haven’t happened yet, when you reach a certain point in life, a certain age, you start to wonder (or at least I did) if I haven’t achieved everything I wanted to by now, then isn’t it too late.

I realize that I cannot control when it is that my plans start to fall into place. I can’t help the obstacles that are bound to get in my way as I struggle to get to where it is that I want to be. What I can control is my thinking and my actions.

As you all know, my actions lately haven’t been up to par for a person who wants to achieve big things in their life, largely in part to letting the setbacks, failures, and the feelings of defeat, get the better of me. I wish I could say it’s as simple as me allowing myself to fall into a state of depression but for anyone who suffers with frequent bouts of depression you already know that it doesn’t work quite that way.

While I may not have been able to control the feeling of depression that came over me I sometimes wonder if I could’ve somehow kept it from completely taking over and not just wallowed in it instead of doing everything I could to pull myself out of it. Now that I am finally starting to feel things shift and turn around I notice I am starting to get my drive back and my creativity is beginning to flow again.

I realize that while there are many things that I have to accept are beyond my control and that I just have to let go of, there are still some important aspects of my plans for the future that I can control. I am working on my projects again and I am not giving up on my dreams and my journey to success. I know I’m not getting any younger but as far as I know, success can come at any time as long as I keep pushing and moving forward and that’s exactly what I intend to do.

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

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Trying to Get Unblocked

Trying to get Unblocked

It’s been a long time since I’ve really written anything, well posted anything here at least. I don’t know why I’ve been so blocked lately but I just know that I have not been the writer that I have envisioned myself being. It was certainly not for the lack of ideas, nor the lack of wanting to just sit down and write.

I even made the excuse that for over half of the time that I haven’t written anything was due to the fact that my computer that I had died and I was unable to write anything but when someone got me the early birthday gift of another laptop there was no other technical excuse.

Every time I would sit down to write I would just be suddenly stricken with this intense creative blockage and nothing would come to mind and certainly nothing came out of my fingertips onto the page. I have been documenting the ideas that I’ve had for the last several months but it didn’t help with the blockage. I actually almost talked myself out of writing this blog post today because I was afraid that if I sat down at this keyboard, once again, nothing would come out.

Even though this is not exactly the eloquent blog post I would’ve liked to have written for you today, I guess I have to take comfort in the fact that it is a step in the right direction. I hope that I can get back into the swing of things as far as my writing is concerned because I have way too many things to get accomplished to continue allowing this blockage to get the better of me. Particularly since I’ve been creatively blocked somehow for the better part of this year.

I have half a year’s worth of plans to catch up on and I know I need to get my act together and push past this blockage. I’m crossing my fingers that I can just jump back into this whirlwind of these goals I have for my writing career. So here goes everything!!!

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

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My Balance Is Still Off

Finding Balance 1

This week is almost over and while I have accomplished some things on my to do list for this week (okay maybe only one thing really), I have not done nearly enough towards what needs to be done. When I think about the fact that January is almost over and my novel hasn’t even been touched yet this month I shake my head at myself. True enough I had some things I needed to get out of the way promotion wise before working on my novel but then when I think about it, is that just an excuse.

I said that this was going to be the year that I probably sleep a lot less to achieve my tasks but I’m torn between my drive to succeed in my writing and my drive to get healthier and get my weight loss journey back on track which includes getting more sleep so that my body can be in the best position possible in order to lose the weight that I need to lose and gain more self-confidence and self-acceptance. It’s hard when I put it out there in writing like that because it’s either my dreams and my vision or my health and prolonging my life.

It seems like it would be an easy choice but it’s really not. I do find that when I’m healthier (and that includes getting the proper, or close to proper, amount of sleep) I do produce more in my writing and my creativity is at its best. However, then I see the people that I admire and look to for knowledge and know-how producing massive amount of product and their projects coming one, after another and you see the number one thing they practice is working into the wee hours of the night and getting a very minimal amount of sleep.

That is not me comparing myself to others (not really) because I know that I am not them but that is me acknowledging that to put out more work requires more time and that more time means less of something, typically sleep. I am still working out the balance to get the ball rolling here but I have yet to feel like I’m getting off to a good start. I almost feel like I didn’t start preparing for this year soon enough at the end of the last one. But how much preparation can you do before you should actually begin doing instead of just planning to do.

Balance and focus seem to be a continuing issue and it has to be figured out and quickly if I want this year to go the way that I want it to go. I’m still learning and while I know that there should never really a point in life that you stop learning, I feel like I’m too old to still be trying to figure it out. And yet, I still press on!

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

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Success Is An Action Word

Success is an action word

So I’ve been thinking a lot lately, not only about what I want to get accomplished in the coming year of 2015, but also about all of the things that I ddin’t get accomplished in 2014. I know that you can not dweel too long on the past and mistakes that were made and I try not to but when I think of how many opportunities and time I let go by without achieving all that I had set out to this year I feel slightly disgusted with myself. It wasn’t even the fact that there was a lack of ideas or even motivation to get them done. It’s simply that there was much more procrastination and fear and not nearly enough action.

I am taking steps to try to put an end to the need to procrastinate and to put some extra motivation into my drive to get the things I want accomplished for my brand completed. I’m starting with taking some steps into getting myself a business/book coach. Someone who can help steer me in the right direction, to correct whatever it is that I am not doing right, and to give me that nudge that I definitely need and hold me accountable to what I say I am going to do. A coach will also help me with my issues in regards to focus because I tend to think of a million ideas at once and actually believe that I can multi-task and work on all of them at the same time but in reality that puts me in the position where I actually get little to nothing done.

I’m trying to map out my plans for the year 2015 and I don’t want to get overwhelmed with the actual process of mapping out my goals that I don’t actually even sit and write them down (which is the point I’m getting to now). I do this at the end of every year, sit down and list my goals and plans to attain those goals, and the task has never been so hard and so daunting, but as I think of how much time I have wasted not putting enough action into my plan for success it fills me with a sense of urgency to cram the last few years of unaccomplishments into one. I know that I don’t have to do that but I feel like time is something that none of us is sure just how much of it we have left to fulfill our dreams.

I have said it before and I am probably going to keep on saying it until it actually proves to be true but this year is going to be the year I get things on track and going in the direction it is meant to go in. Success is not just something you strive for with planning out what you want. With a plan there has to be action to follow, a lot of action, and you can not allow procrastination to settle in because it is hard to get rid of. So how are your plans for the coming year shaping up? Are you prepared for the amount of action it will take to achieve them?

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

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The Writer’s Guilt I Sometimes Feel

Writer's Guilt

There are many things that I have left to learn about being a writer because I don’t think one can ever be done learning when it comes to their craft. One thing mostly is to not feel so guilty when I’m not writing. Truth be told there is never really a moment when I am not writing in some capacity because the thing with writers is that you don’t always have to be physically writing to be working on something that has to do with your writing.

I get this tremendous amount of guilt when I am not physically typing out words to a story or if I don’t have a finished product. I sometimes don’t stop to realize that whenever I am researching something for a project I am writing. When I am thinking through the storyline in my head I’m still writing. Even when I am reading leisurely then I am still in many ways nurturing my craft because you can’t be a great writer without first being a great reader. My problem is that I tend to follow a lot of writers on Facebook and Twitter and I read about their amazing rates of production and the way they are able to put out work and the way they always seem to be posting that they are currently writing and working on some huge project and I start to think about why I’m not putting out work at that rate.

True enough I have had far too many moments of what I call “creative blocks” because it was a little more than just writer’s block because the words were always there, but with all of the ideas that I have had and stories that have been formed in my head I should have been better at my own production rate. However, I believe that when I do sit down to put those words to paper that it will flow more fluidly because I’ve researched what needed to be researched, I’ve thought through the storyline and even outlined what needed to be outlined, I’ve been reading other writers so I’ve got a good sense of different styles of writing and different writer’s voices and tones.

I have to remember not to feel so guilty for not producing words because there is so much more that goes into the craft of writing than just the actual writing. It’s just another way of sabotaging myself and my own creative efforts because if I somehow convince myself that I’m not a good writer because I am not actually producing what I should be then I will be giving myself an excuse not to try and a reason to just give up altogether.

In life we always can seem to find the things that we did wrong or that weren’t quite done to perfection but so rarely do we stop and revel in the good that we did and the things that we get right. I have to stop focusing on the imperfections that I have within my craft and zero in on what I am doing to further my craft and my career in writing. Guilt can be a very dangerous thing in many aspects of our lives and truly as long as we are continually trying, as long as we never give up on our dreams and our goals then we don’t have any reason to feel guilty.

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

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Fear Will Not Defeat Me

Fear will not defeat me 2

I admittedly was a tad bit naïve to think that this going back to basics challenge was going to allow me to somehow negate the usage of the computer completely. Obviously my research is done using the computer, my social media marketing is done with the use of the computer, and of course eventually even what I write on paper has to be typed up on the computer at some point, perfect example, this blog post. I know my plan was to go paperless for the month but I can’t get away from the computer at all. However, I have been writing more using my paper and pen and writing out ideas and plans and it was has been more than I have worked on in a while.

I am discovering things that maybe subconsciously I already realized but just didn’t want to admit to. I always knew I struggled with my fear. It can be quite paralyzing at times. And while I also knew that confidence was another issue of mine, I didn’t even factor in courage into this journey of mine and whether I have enough of it to reach my destiny. I have always said that I may not be confident in myself in regards to anything else but when it came to writing, I was confident in my ability to write.

What I realize now is that this was a lie I was telling to myself. If in fact I was as confident in my ability to write as I have always claimed to be then why do I always stop short of submitting my work and putting my work out there? As I am finding my creative spark again and having a bit of a creative breakthrough I am getting real with myself and the fact that I have to just let go of all of this fear and embrace some courage and confidence. The courage to put my work out there to as many people as humanly possible, and confidence in the fact that although everyone may not love my work, my writing is still good enough.

I have been defeated by so many people and so many things and I think that all of the defeats stacking up really started getting to me and took the fear that I’ve always had and elevated it to the level of being paralyzed by it. Most of all I am realizing that what I have been defeated by most of all is myself and my own negative thoughts swirling around inside my head. So I am going to let the fear go (it will not happen overnight) and just trust in the talent that God instilled in me and trust the purpose that he gave me and embrace everything that lies in store for the journey to my dreams, good or bad.

Yes I included the bad because I know that without the obstacles that are thrown at you along the way you may never know and tap into just how strong you really are. You can’t have a testimony to share with the world without first being tested. I am tired of letting the fear of these obstacles put me in a state of perpetual stillness and I am ready to get moving towards my destiny. I hope that none of you are stuck standing still but if you are, let’s get moving together.

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

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