So I’ve just stepped up to the post-a-week challenge.
WordPress is encouraging a post-a-day and a post-a-week challenge. It’s not a contest. You don’t win anything that you can put on a bookshelf or display case or hang on a ribbon around your neck. It’s a challenge, a way of setting a goal for yourself to encourage you to develop a new habit or adopt a routine into your lifestyle, this one obviously set around blogging.
I’ve never been very good at these types of challenges. I was always the kid in school that tanked in the classes that didn’t hold my interest, though I excelled at the ones that captivated me. Accomplishing a task solely on the basis of it being a set expectation never worked for me.
So why am I taking on this challenge? Do I feel a need to learn to take on expectations that are thrust unto me? In a sense I could be cheating at this particular one, as I’ve been pretty consistent in posting to this blog, so how much of a stretch is it for me to post weekly? It it really just a “gimme”, a cakewalk?
There is also a post-a-day challenge. If it were really about the challenge, about pushing boundaries and setting new patterns, wouldn’t this be more appropriate to take on? Currently I do not post to this blog on a daily basis, nowhere near that frequently, in fact. I do journaling offline as well, but not daily.
This particular endeavor is often inspired for me. Even when I don’t think I’m inspired, when I begin to write the words will start to form and the flow develops. Sometimes it’s a matter of pushing out the congestion which is actually inspiration without definition, an amorphous blob of impetus that is dammed behind a wall of ambiguity of subject matter, of congruent ideas.
The problem comes when I do try to force it, when there is no congestion, when there is a vacuum where an inspiration would otherwise reside, when motivation is available in surplus but source material is absent. If I were to take on the daily blogging endeavor, I would be revisited by the resentment of my young adulthood, of an obligation I feel no compulsion to fulfill for the sake of the obligation alone.
Each post is born of a catharsis, of the gestation of my thoughts, emotions, and experiences combined until they have ripened to a stage where they are ready to be harvested and posted. Even then the subject of each writing often gets further processed beyond the initial posting time. To write a post to check a box of mandated frequency would simply be akin to serving up an unbaked cake. The thoughts, emotions, and experiences that are the basic ingredients of these postings need to bake in my own mental oven.
However, the weekly post feels right. As my own minister I am entitled to give a weekly sermon to myself, am I not? A week should be plenty of time for the ingredients to cook up, to ripen in the sun of my life experience. So I agree to take on the challenge. The key for me here is knowing myself. I know where I am comfortable, but not afraid to stretch it. I also know how far I can stretch before risking a severe injury.