Getting Things Done

You know, I think I’ve found another addictive activity to pursue in this blog writing thing. Which reminds me, I’ve been meaning to change the name of this “journal” section into “blog”, because well, that’s what it is. “Journal” was just my feeble attempt at being different. Actually, I keep a journal and was confusing the two.

For several years I had a lot of projects and goals I wanted to accomplish, but for one reason or another I had trouble really accomplishing them. I’d make some progress here and there, but sustaining that progress was difficult. I began reading about self-improvement on a whim (one thing I’ve learned is that things don’t really happen on a whim, but I may talk about that in a future post). Now here’s another one of those addictive activities. One of the first books I read was the 7 Habits, by Stephen Covey. It helped me figure out my values and purpose (that I’m basically selfish, ha!). Another early read was The Artist’s Way, by Julia Cameron. That book got me started writing journals (or “morning pages”), which I’ve been doing for a while. There were many other books along the way, which I’ll discuss in the future (ah, the future). Many of them can be found at used book stores at a price even I can afford.

Recently, I’ve been reading Getting Things Done (GTD), by David Allen. I’m putting a lot of effort into following his system, and it’s working. I had a lot of goals already, and this system helps me make progress on them. What I like about GTD is its holistic approach. Allen wants you to look at all of the obligations and commitments in your life and decide what to do about them. He provides a systematic approach to doing this. There are plenty of sites about GTD. 43folders is a popular one.

These books and ways of thinking might help you, as it’s helped me. I don’t believe there’s a single philosophy that’s going to answer all our questions about life. I believe in keeping an open mind, and using our creative powers to form a better understanding of ourselves.

The Writing Ritual

I’m going to try and have a writing ritual everyday, which means this journal will be an eclectic mix of topics. The hard part is not editing my writing while doing this (too late, I’ve already done it). I began keeping journals a few years ago, and write in them everyday. It turned out to be more of a self-help thing, but recently, with Clothian Chronicles (my comic book project), I’ve focused on having some kind of narrative voice/style/what-have-you.

I have this secret notion that writing is the “real deal”, whereas “art” (or drawing pictures, if you will) is this thing I do for fun. In fact, I told my mother I wanted to be a writer long before telling her I wanted to be an artist. She wasn’t impressed by either of those choices.

I have a lot of topics I want to write about; art, life…well, what more is there but art and life? I don’t profess to know anything special about these topics. Quite the opposite, really. The hope is that by writing about it I can clarify my thoughts, and use this electronic medium (wow, I sound like an old man) to communicate with others. And that’s the point of my artistic endeavors anyway; to communicate ideas.