Ode To Joy: I Love What I Do Every Day — And You Can Too

by @thewritermama on September 28, 2014 · 3 comments

Write for love AND money. That's my motto. Christina KatzOver the years, I have taught hundreds of writers, I have written thousands of words, and I have encouraged and inspired thousands of people, not all of them writers.

I can tell you what the worst days felt like and what the best days felt like.

The worst days were the days that I was fixated on the results of my efforts and trying to control those results.

And on the best days I was simply immersed in the joy of doing what I love and expressing who I am.

I have noticed that the results are always better on the days I am immersed in joy than on the days I am obsessed with trying to control the outcome.

If you are a writer and you want the key to professional happiness and professional satisfaction, look no further.

Give yourself an attitude adjustment, develop your skills, and focus on the next most important step for you.

That’s your job.

The secret sauce of a joyful writing career is being the best you can be, spreading that good stuff to others, and ignoring all the things that are not your job.

If you want to be happy in your writing career for just one day: put your cynicism down, turn off your mind, and just take the next step.

Dive into your latest current project and give it everything you’ve got.

Time will fly, stress will evaporate, results will accumulate, and the next thing you know magic will have happened.

You will have moved your writing career forward and enjoyed the process.

In this distracted, neurotic, cynical day and age THAT is a miracle every time it happens.

Every single writer I currently work with knows how to do this. They know how to focus, they know how to let go of the outcome, and they know how to enjoy the process of getting work done.

Do they forget sometimes that it’s supposed to be enjoyable?

Sure. Of course. Life is not going to just politely pause for you every time you snap your fingers.

But the more you tread the calm, sane path to success, the more clear the path becomes.

My students succeed at taming life so that it allows them to do what they love, too. There is no either-or.

Either-or is not necessary. Swap that “or” out for an “and.”

They succeed consistently. They break their own records. They keep calmly pushing themselves to accomplish the next goal.

I do the same things I teach my students day after day, week after week, month after month. I am not immune even though I have been doing this work for fifteen years.

So, if you want to write, embrace the process, be process-oriented, and enjoy the process.

There may be some disappointments along the way — since we can’t control outcomes — but as with everything else, suffering is optional.

If you love writing and you love your career, they will both love you back.

So what are we waiting for? Let’s get to work!

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  • Paula

    Great post and at the perfect time too. After working on a book project for the past year, the joy felt lost as I’m moved into the “business” side of things but this post reminds me to look forward to the fun and joy that will come as I begin the process again with another new story. I’m ready to dive back into a new story and give it everything I’ve got!

  • christinakatz

    Yes, I always called that the “post-partum” stage. The part where the hard work is over but you don’t really yet know how it’s all going to turn out. Super-hard to get motivated in that gap, so good for you for finding yourself the next project that excites you. Always go where the energy wants to go, that’s what I always say. 🙂

  • Sue LeBreton

    Get caught up in worry about outcome stalls me EVERY time. I try to be more mindful of it now and stop it when I realize it’s impacting me and get back to loving the process.

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