I’ve found that I greatly enjoy the process of writing, but the more tedious aspect of writing well is editing. If every article I wrote took a total of 10 hours (to keep it simple), I’d estimate I spend only 2 hours actually writing and 8 hours editing. In the editing process, I go through line by line, word by word, asking myself if this is the right word in this sentence, or how could I break up this chunk of text, or should I move this paragraph before that one, and so on. Sometimes I’ll spend a good ten minutes just looking up the right word to insert in a particular sentence. It’s quite an ordeal, and I think it’s one of the reasons why I have so many half-finished drafts sitting in folders everywhere. Getting my thoughts on in a quick ramble is easy, but when it comes to trying to articulate precisely what I wanted to say, and doing so effectively in a terse manner, I freeze. I suppose I’m not sure if this is the way writing is supposed to work, or if my perfectionism is stopping me from releasing more of my work into the public.
Funny enough, the above paragraph involved absolutely no editing. What you’re reading is the first draft. Call this my way of battling my tendency to over-edit.
This year was an eventful year, and one that I think marked a turning point for my personal growth. This will be the first year that I write one of these self-reflections and plan for the upcoming year.
I’m going to break it up by what went well this year (the good) and what didn’t (the bad).
-Graduated from university, said goodbye to formal education for now (possibly forever)
-Moved to New York and closed the long-distance gap with my girlfriend of several years
-Made reading a part of my life. Read 75+ books in total this year, after having read <5 the year before
-Started writing and publishing my work online, receiving tens of thousands of views and realizing in the process that I enjoy writing and thinking
-Began taking my personal and life development more seriously; realized that if I wanted to make the most out of my life, I had to drastically change my mindset, daily habits, network, etc.
-Discovered amazing virtual mentors through the likes of James Altucher, James Clear, and Michael Ellsberg
“Discovered” entrepreneurship and the concept of “choosing yourself” – realized life is so much more than the 9-5 grind if you allow it to be
-Poor productivity/time management for the most part prevented me from doing more with my free time and made others wait for me
-Met relatively few new people both offline and online
-Didn’t travel outside North America
-Didn’t call home often enough
-Consumed far more information than I actually acted upon, i.e. low engagement with the books I read
Read more2014 Self-Reflection and New Year’s Resolutions