I wonder if that would make things less stressful, more fun? And prompt me to do more things? If I gave myself little achievements like that? IE: Selling enough hoops to pay my rent. I already unlocked that achievement! Experiment over, world keeps on turning, and now I know that I can.
I thought of this reading Tynan's most recent blog post on where to "set the bar". In general, I find his posts to be 80% preachy, 20% useful, but this one did get me thinking, because he used a metaphor I completely relate to: The amount of books that are published that are basically crap, due to the fact that the steps to getting a book published are fairly daunting and involve actually writing a book. So fortune rewards those that actually try rather than shriveling up in a corner thinking about how hard it would be.
But the thing that stops me from trying to get a book published is not the fear of failing, or the fact that it involves a lot of steps. The thing that stops me, personally, is the thought that getting a book published could result in me being a Writer, and writing would then be my Career. And I'd get saddled with a book contract to write four or five MORE books, even if I didn't want to. And I'd have to lock myself in my apartment, or the local coffee shop, for hours on end every day and devote that time to writing.
That sort of life sounds great when I'm on one of my writing kicks, but as anyone who has known me for any amount of time is well aware, those come and go. I do not want to be a Writer. In the same way I don't really want to be a Hoop Teacher, or a Yoga Instructor, or a Blogger, or any other thing that I love and decide to try to make money off of.
So what if, instead of thinking of publishing a book as a means to a career in writing, what if I just made it a personal experiment to see if I could get a book published? Just one book. Not self-published but real published. And then I don't ever have to write anything again if I don't want to. The achievement would be unlocked, experiment over.
Thinking of it that way makes it sound fun, like a challenge, and takes away all the stupid resistance that keeps me from trying. Because even the times when I DO try, I do it with a specific goal in mind. I'm going to finish writing and editing x because I'm going to sell it in y manner to produce funds for z project.
What if the only goal were to just do it for the hell of it? That's why I did NaNoWriMo in the first place all those years ago, just to see if I could write a book. Turns out I can. Now what if I can publish one?
I bet I could do that, too.