NaNoWriMo2015 Journal

Still Moving Forward

#NaNoWriMo LOG: DAY 22 (A 1st Timer’s Journey)
I slept in today. I can relax now, but I can not stop. The sun came up without me, I missed it by about 20 minutes. I let the girls stay up late on non-school nights, I call that a parenting-hack that has a bunch of benefits including long, quiet Saturday and Sunday mornings. I started some online holiday shopping. I had coffee. I reflected on my NaNoWriMo journey and read through a handful of questions I received through my blog+email+Twitter+Facebook+Medium. Even though I met the 50,000-word goal there are still 30-days in the month of November, so my challenge-within-a-challenge (daily journal post + self-portrait) still has a few days to go.  
Today I'll answer a few of the questions I received about my first-time NaNo experience:

Q.
HOW DOES IT FEEL?

A.
It feels amazing. Tears of joy actually came out of my eyes, I didn't write that in for dramatic effect. If you've followed any of my posts in the last 6-12 months, or if you've seen my motivational conference talk, "No Excuses" (aka: "Do or GTFO. There is no Try.") you know how badly I've wanted this and for how long. In May of 2013 I set out to change EVERYTHING in my life after the most severe case of burnout I hope to ever cross paths with. I had a list of excuses stopping me from doing things I wanted to do, and I used smaller challenges to hack through the excuses because excuses - although they feel like pretty damn real reasons sometimes - are total bullshit. I broke things down, overcame one fear, one obstacle at a time until finally there were no more excuses to stop me from DOING this. The reward of accomplishment feels AMAZING every time. 

Q.
NOW WHAT?

A.
Now I keep going. I am still very invested in my 30 and 31-day challenges because they push me to try new things, in new ways. I'll relax a tiny bit and shift my focus to finishing out my other November challenge, which is 30-days of journaling and self-portraits. In addition to that, it's time to prepare for my December 31-day challenge. I'm not sure yet what that will be. But as always, anyone interested in joining along can and should! 

I also have a lot of work to do on the outcome of my NaNo end-product. It's a mess. I've received a lot of great advice on what to do next and when, which I am grateful for. I'll trust my guts on the matter and if you follow my stuff, you'll know when it's being addressed again. ;)

Q.
WAS IT HARD?

A.
Yes. But, I quite literally spent a year + "training" for participation through my smaller monthly challenges. NaNoWriMo hasn't been the only purpose for my monthly challenges, but it was certainly one of the bigger objectives I had. The key for me in knocking this out was 100% about making the time to write before my "real" day began. I tried messing with time pockets and things I'd read that worked for other people. Every time I gave a little slack in my routine it completely messed up my ability to carve out time anywhere else in the day. It's not an easy challenge, and not one I took lightly. Once I committed I was all-in.  This is an incredible, respectable challenge and if you love writing, I highly recommend it. Before the month is over I'll reflect on some of the huge things that I learned from by participating in NaNoWriMo2015. 

I'd love to hear YOUR stories and/or answer more questions, too!