Oh, dear. My obsessions have gotten me somewhere in the past. This is frequently a by-product of my literal mind. The 4-H handout said work with my dog 15 minutes every day in order to train her in obedience, and damned if I did not religiously work that pup for at least the allotted time each and every day. Thank you for you patience and unwavering devotion, Apache. The trophies and ribbons were fun. The connection I had with my dog was even better.
I completely forgot about my wildly nascent blog and my equally embryonic commitment to write every day. Because that is what writers do, and this is what I want to do. Yesterday, I had a symphony concert. Before that, well, practicing and riding the ponies. Hiking. Trying to get in the holiday spirit. Or spirits, however the mood may be striking me.That same commitment I had to my Apache, I had to my flute. For years I practiced every single day without fail. I knew I had to put in double the effort of many of my compatriots because of my background. Years down the road, that commitment rewarded me with playing opportunities and major issues with my hands and tendons.
Two years post retirement, and my hands are much better. I’m practicing, but without the paranoid fervor that drove me previously. Would I have gotten as far without the hours and hours of practice? Probably not, but I might have been able to practice in a less harmful way.
Right now, I am searching for a way to excel in the things I love doing without driving my body past the point of actually being able to perform and still attaining a level of mastery. A huge part of this mindset is confidence. Yes, I have to put in the time and effort, but confidence lets me know when to stop.