Do What You Love

What’s the one thing you love doing so much that you have a hard time understanding how other people can’t like it?

That was one of the questions in Jon Acuff’s new book Quitter. The question made me stop for second. Not because I didn’t know what it was but because I wanted to make sure that it wasn’t something that I was just repeating because it had been true in the past.

For me, that one thing is writing. Or to be a little bit more broad, telling stories. I love to tell stories. When I was a little girl, I lived in a world of my own Walter Mitty-esque world. It was populated with shipwrecks, pirates, buried treasure, crime capers, and spunky populants who never waited to be rescued. Looking back, it may have been the steady diet of The Wizard of Oz, Swiss Family Robinson, Treasure Island, The Goonies, and 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea that fed my imagination. That and frequent trips to the library.

Telling stories is just what I do. Writing is an extension of my being. I can’t help but communicate. It’s just how I’ve been created. I honestly have a hard time figuring out people who don’t enjoy writing or just can’t. I wait impatiently when someone drags through a story. Sometimes, I even think in words. There’s a chalkboard in my head and words just appear. Imagine a giant typology video and you’ve got what happens to me. Not all the time but if I stop and take the time to clear away the mental clutter, it’s there. I’m learning to broaden my skills, from printed word to spoken word. Adding real voice and visuals to the medium of story.  

Other people live to code, or make people’s lives better by dispatching, or saving lives, or drawing blood, or teaching people good things like how to read or balance a checkbook. When someone is doing what they love, it isn’t always happy sailings. There’s a lot of hard work involved. But more often than not, that person has a glow about them. They are doing what they were created to do.

What were you created to do? Is that something you even know? If you don’t, I’d encourage you to ask yourself Jon’s question. It will help you clarify some things. I know it did for me!

2 Responses to “Do What You Love”
  1. Very cool! I remember studying Plato in high school, and he postulated that anyone acting in the capacity for which he/she was intended, was doing something good for society. That’s obviously a loose paraphrase! But a writer should be writing first and foremost. (That’s probably why I remember this lesson–it’s great permission to sit down at the keyboard despite needing to do laundry.)

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