I want to change the world.
I want to change the world for the better. Leave it a better place than when I showed up.
It is a weird feeling. It is a feeling of an undeniable drive to do something bigger than myself. It consumes my thoughts. It steals my energy and drains my emotions.
The problem is I don’t yet know what that is.
The first thing I have to come to grips is what this actually means to change the world.
A key lesson I have learned is that if I change one person’s outlook on life then I have changed the world.
A statement like wanting to change the world has the connotation of wanting to make a global impact but that doesn’t have to be true. We often forget the world is made up of many things; people, animals, places, objects and so on.
If you change any of those things, you have technically changed the world from what it was before you did it.
So when a statement is made about changing the world a person must first consider what part of the world they want to change and why.
In my own case when I make the statement about changing the world it comes from that drive to do something bigger than myself.
I could simply live my life working for my own well-being. Grow my business to serve me, support me and let me do only things that benefit me. This might work for many people but it does not for me.
My businesses do serve me, support me and let me do things I enjoy but I can’t shake the feeling that I am meant to do more.
If you look at the front page of this website you will see the mantra: “In everything I do, I do to help people communicate around the topics, ideas, and passions they have.” I believe this wholeheartedly, but I feel like it is not defined enough yet.
I feel like I need to define my true purpose before I can attack this desire to do more and ultimately change the world, however I define it.
More to come on purpose next time…
How do you start writing a book? Do you start with the idea you have and expand on it? Do you develop the outline of the book? Do you start with an introduction?
These are all questions I’m pondering as I get anxiety about the idea of writing another book.
I’m not a novelist, nor do I write short stories or fiction. I write creative non-fiction. Or at least that’s what I think I write.
My first book was a photo book. Stories accompanied the photos, called Yellowknife Streets. It documented the lives of many of the people living on the streets of Yellowknife at that time.
I know for that book I started writing each story that I acquired. As more acquired the book started to form into its own. I then spent time thinking about why I was doing what I was doing. What I wanted to accomplish. And what I wanted other people to understand about the book and the people in it.
This understanding of the book as a whole helped me write the introduction.
So in that case, I wrote the entire book first and the introduction last. Is that normal?
This next book that I have an idea for is also fiction but not a photo book. And it won’t feature specific people.
It will be different. For me.
I’m excited about this but also nervous. Hence the pondering, how does a person start writing a book.
Some of the tactics I ponder are:
- Can I write the introduction first and let it guide the book?
- Should I storyboard the rough outline I currently have knowing more will arise?
- Can I start writing it before I’ve done all the research?
- Should I have an editor help me figure out the outline of the book?
- Can I add to the outline after I’ve written most of the book?
- What does enough information look like to start writing a book?
- Can I write the book one chapter at a time and then put it all together later?
These are all naive questions to ask. I didn’t research how to write a book. Or take a course. Or go to school for writing. Or ask a writer friend. Or have the desire to do any of those things. I just want to write.
The book I want to write follows the same principles as most of the business books I read.
What I have learned from those books is that I should know what I want the reader to learn. Have a general outline. And throughout the book have each chapter build on the last but also stand on its own.
From my general understanding of these books. It is best to intertwine the information about that chapter with a case study of it in practice. Doing this I assume gives you a better chance of keeping the attention of the reader.
This poses another question.
- Is there a simple formula I can follow for writing each chapter of the book?
Again, these are the questions I am pondering. This is my own adventure into writing something longer than a blog post.
I don’t expect to come to an answer quickly.
And it sounds cliche, but the idea of writing out these questions helps me see what I need to overcome.
In closing, I’m reminded of a Hemingway quote: “All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence that you know.”
Since posting my long piece on my personal health changes I have been thinking more and more about why I run.
Running for me has become my activity of choice for getting my blood moving and heart pumping. I love the feeling of running while I’m doing it. And the feeling of accompaniment when I’m done, but I’ve also been very protective of my running time.
Over the last severals months, I’ve been asked to go running with other people. Sometimes on the weekends and sometimes during the week. Yet I have always declined. And it makes me feel awkward.
It is not that I don’t want to be with other people or that I’m too self-conscious I don’t think I could keep up. It’s that running for me is a very personal and scheduled activity.
In this past few weeks, I’m come to describe my approach to running as a very utilitarian activity.
Running as a leisurely activity still doesn’t compute for me. I can’t bring myself to go for a run in the middle of the day on a whim.
I don’t run at random. I don’t run for the fun of it. I don’t run to waste time.
I run because of science. I run because I’m doing “X” for a certain amount of time to get to “Y”. I run because I’ve learned I need to exert more energy to improve and maintain a healthy self.
Yes, I sound like a robot but that is how my logical brain works. And how I’ve come to fit something I never use to do into a daily routine.
The hardest part for me while picking up running was giving myself the permission to do it. And the best way I found I could do that was by telling myself I’m going to do it first thing in the morning for 6 days a week.
Running first thing in the morning is great for me because I’m a morning person. I’m on the treadmill or outside by 5:50 am. It also means that running doesn’t interfere with any other scheduled activities in my day.
I live by my routine and to break it is very hard for me. So to go for a random run in the middle of my day would throw me off. And I like my structured routine. I do allow for flexibility in that routine. But when it comes to something as important as being physically activity I am now determined to keep to my regiment. So even if plans in the day or evening change I know I did my exercise and don’t have to stress about it.
So while I may shift into leisurely running with other people, when summer comes perhaps. For now, I’ll stick to my regiment.
At the same time, I’m curious to know how other people have dealt with similar internal struggles? Do you follow a regiment and running socially? Is it possible? Am I anti-social?