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"Life is about 1 thing"

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

You may recognize this quote from City Slickers. And while it's kind of true, I'm going to mess with it a bit here as I discuss something I've noticed in my National Novel Writing Month (50k in 30 days) progress.

I've kept moving forward by seeing something I could do just out of reach. Perhaps what the hymn refers to with "I do not ask to see the distant scene, one step enough for me". The way it works with writing is that I can push to the next thousand, and the next thousand is never actually a thousand away. Because I can measure it in a daily word count, a file word count or my total overall word count. That is, I might be at 800 for the day, I can push on to 1000, which puts me at 4667 for the chapter and I can push on to 5000, which puts me at 24500 for total, and I can push on to 25000. (numbers not to scale).

So how can this be applied to nutrition and fitness goals? I see I do it, when I shoot for a meal calorie goal, or a number of calories to round out a meal, to get to the right number for the day. I do it with fitness to get to a calories burned for the week. I'm not as knowledgeable about the calories from fitness yet, but I'm still learning.

So I don't know exactly how to say what this one thing life is about. Maybe it's the principle that we get where we want to go not by going straight there, but by doing the thing that will take us there. Lincoln says a good thing about that to Thaddeus Stephens in the White House kitchen. Your compass may point north, but does not warn you of the bogs and obstacles that might stop you getting there. (quote also not to scale).
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    Well, what 1 thing means to me today is that life is about thinking about 1 thing at a time, maybe. Groundhog day and Shadowlands both have quotes about it, about not looking ahead too far and living in the now. Though sometimes the now is not that great, and we do look ahead to something else. I learned that last year too.

    They talk about it in 12 steps too, that you sometimes have to take one step into the darkness and that is as far as we see at a time. Because sometimes if we could see where we were headed, our preconceived notions about what we are capable of would stop us.

    I wouldn't say the writing is about a word quota so much as breaking things down into manageable bites. I guess this is actually what could be called Kaizen, or a Japanese management philosophy having to do with looking for achievement in small and simple things rather than shooting for the stars or going for the gold. It's like the 10 minute fitness thing they talk about here.

    I did think of starting a Kaizen group but decided to join a babysteps group instead.
    Here is someone's blog post about the part of Lincoln I referred to:
    I guess Groundhog day is also a story rooted in the Hindu tradition, that we can be free from the cycle of... uh, vanity or something. It's hard to translate.
    1977 days ago

    Comment edited on: 11/20/2012 5:21:54 PM
    I love a blog that sparks me to want to know more, to look for answers within and without. And yours has done that.

    First of all, though I've been choir director and church organist at 6 different churches of different denominations, I did not know the hymn. So I had to find the lyrics and listen to it, then learn about the poet, John Henry Newman.

    g/history-of-hymns/6 This was a phenomenal site if anyone wants to hear and learn more.

    So I was struck by John Newman writing the words after what he considered his 3rd important illness. Many in Europe were dying of the typhoid, but he lived; felt God still had a purpose for him, and he wrote the words while on a boat which was becalmed.

    Seems to me he's asking God to lead him wherever he wants, that he's content to see just what is the next step on his journey, until he meets his loved ones who have gone before. That he is ready for whatever life brings, even death.

    Am I any where your understanding of the hymn?

    So, I am now on a quest to define the one thing that I believe life is about.
    Perhaps you should start a team?

    1977 days ago
    So are you saying writing is about one thing, meeting a word quota . . .
    Nutrition is about one thing: Fine tuning your plan to bet the appropriate number of calories to fuel your body.
    Fitness is about one thing: Burning the calories you provided your body
    Life is about doing whatever is needed to get you where you're going.

    ???? Math was the first to go with chemotherapy. So I had to struggle to focus on the mathematical/logical analogies.

    If I'm close, then I would like to know where you want to go when you make your statement about what one thing life is about for you.

    "Maybe it's the principle that we get where we want to go . . ."

    And the kid in me is shouting "Tell her to let us know WHY she wants to go there." Maybe that would be three things.

    Inquiring minds, you know. . .

    BTW here's a link to that part of the movie:


    1977 days ago
    You seem to handle the bumps in the road pretty well. I'm proud of you.
    1977 days ago
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