Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Should We Get Our Hopes Up?

Only six more weeks or so until DH comes home. I'm excited about that, big time. And I've got my hopes up again about my foot. I know I'll crash with a big bang if I don't get back to TKD, but I'm determined.

I'm fairly certain it'll get better. He fixed the bit so that I'm not causing the bones to grate against each other, so that's cool. Now that I know I'm not injuring my foot by doing the exercises, I can help make it better myself. I've been doing them about three hours a day (while doing other things). And icing it a lot so the swelling stays fairly under control.

But it all begs the question: is it wise to get one's hopes up?

Afterall, it hurts when our hopes are dashed. I think my first instinct is to hope less so that it hurts less if I fail. The past year, I could barely think about TKD because it would depress me. And so I stopped hoping, locked that part away from me.

After the roller coaster ride of last week, I'm back to hoping big time, but with a little knot of fear in my stomach. Doesn't matter. I'm going to work my foot a lot. Sometimes just being able to put one's energy in one direction helps a ton.

It would be SO cool if I could get back to TKD soon. He said maybe six weeks. Six weeks! Can you imagine? That would be AWESOME. I've already got TKD classes penned into my calendar.

Remember how when you were young, it wasn't "cool" to want something really bad? How even if you did, you "played it cool"?

Well, I don't mind falling flat on my face again. I mean, think about it: even if you're falling flat on your face, you're still going forward.

All this makes me think I should be feeling this passionately about getting published by New York. Shouldn't I be bawling my eyes out at times? Shouldn't I be riding a roller coaster?

I don't know.

Do you ride a roller coaster on your writing journey? Is it inspiring, or does it drain your hope and motivation away, little by little?

Anyway, I swear, just yesterday, I was thinking this was going to happen:

Olympic Gold medalist Michael Phelps' BUILT TO SUCCEED, promising to reveal the secrets of his success and go behind the scenes of his approach to training, competition, and winning, built around a narrative thread of the eight final swims of the 2008 Olympic games, with anecdotes about his family, his coach, his passion for the sport, and lessons learned from unexpected challenges and obstacles (he was raised by a single mother and overcame a diagnosis of ADHD), to Dominick Anfuso at Free Press, for publication in December 2008, by Scott Waxman and Farley Chase at the Waxman Literary Agency, in association with Peter Carlisle of Octagon.

Heck, I want to read it, can't wait to read it. Sheesh, and I'll get to read it in four months? Wow! Talk about turnaround. Here's an article on Michael Phelps' Gold Medal "Secrets."

It's a bit of a duh, but it's still interesting. Basically, it says that he hit success by doing what other people were unwilling to do.

Amen to that. That's one thing I think the chiro didn't get about me. He talked to me like I might not do the exercises, and I was trying to ask how long could I do the exercises. I don't think he was getting that I would do them for ten hours a day if it would make my foot better quicker, and that I needed to know when I should stop doing them.

I've already got the two hour walk penned in for this evening. If my foot doesn't get better, it certainly won't be for lack of effort on my part.

20 bonus scribbles:

Eric Mayer,  8/26/2008 08:04:00 PM  

I try not to get my hopes up. Life has taught me that getting my hopes up is not a good percentage bet.

Good luck with that foot. I miss running. If I were given the choice of being able to run if I stopped writing I think I'd take it. I was slow. I finished in the middle of the pack locally, but it was so much fun. There wasn't a lot of crap associated with running like there is with writing. I just got out and practiced and improved some and loved being in motion.

spyscribbler 8/26/2008 08:08:00 PM  

I get that, the crap bit. Before TKD, I didn't know how to do a hobby: they all became my work. A hobby, just doing something for the pure love of it, gosh, it is so rewarding. And I would NEVER let money come within ten miles of it. I mean, the instant you try to turn a hobby into your business (isn't that the American dream?) is the instant the purity of it dies.

Or something, I don't know.

I just love that it's pure fun, it will always be pure fun, and that's it.

Edie 8/26/2008 08:19:00 PM  

Is TKD tae kwon do? If the chiropractor says 6 weeks, I would be planning on it. I like to think positive.

It's different with books, unless we have an editor asking for revisions. That would be similar to your chiropractor treatment and the exercises he has suggested and you're doing.

I'll read the Michael Phelps' book too. :)

Amy Nathan 8/26/2008 08:21:00 PM  

You're obviously passionate about TKD...which leads me to believe you'll get back to it in time.

I tend to get my hopes up, and temper my enthusiasm with realism. What I've learned along the way is that not being hopeful, not being excited...doesn't make you any less disappointed or sad when something doesn't happen. Maybe you were sort of expecting the let down, but were you wishing for it? I say throw caution to the wind and hope for it all -- the joy that comes with hope is worth it. And if in the end you don't get what you wanted, you will still have experienced some of the good stuff.

spyscribbler 8/26/2008 08:42:00 PM  

Edie, good analogy. And yes, TKD=Tae Kwon Do.

I'm totally looking forward to the Michael Phelps book! He's definitely an inspiration.

spyscribbler 8/26/2008 08:43:00 PM  

That is SO true, Amy. That joy and enthusiasm is quite motivating. And you're right: you've still experienced some of the good stuff, even though you didn't get what you want.

That's exactly what I was hoping to say, but couldn't get it out, LOL!

LaDonna 8/26/2008 08:50:00 PM  

Like Amy, I don't hold back on hope either. I think when it's absent, it cuts you off from that which you want. It moves us forward. And Spy, you are definitely a fighter. I love that!

spyscribbler 8/26/2008 08:55:00 PM  

You're absolutely right, Ladonna. I try to fight. Sometimes I am weak, believe me. But eventually, we all get back up, LOL.

Zoe Winters 8/27/2008 12:09:00 AM  

on the new york publisher deal, yes it would be nice...but...to me, it seems there are only two real reasons for me personally to want a big new york publisher:

1. If it could get me exposure to get on the bestseller list (and really this is unrealistic since most people with new york publishers aren't on the bestseller list anyway. A big publisher guarantees very little here.)

2. If I could make good money writing. (This is slightly more realistic but there are still people with big pubs, especially just starting out with their first books who are getting low advances to start. You can't live on a $5,000 - $10,000 advance (which seems to be the median for a first book with a big house) if you only put out one book a year. And I am not willing to write enough books a year to make that "good money.:

So since NY would only be useful to me if I had one of the above two things and I know those things won't happen with a first book anyway, NY isn't really on my radar at this point. My more important goal with writing at this point is to create something and get it out there, and hopefully gain some readers who like/love my stuff.

And those are things I can do without new york. So while NY would be nice, it's not practical or on my plan at this exact juncture.

Zoe Winters 8/27/2008 12:13:00 AM  

Amy says:

What I've learned along the way is that not being hopeful, not being excited...doesn't make you any less disappointed or sad when something doesn't happen.


I SO agree with that. I think we try to keep our hope/expectations down to soften disappointment, but it doesn't really soften it. And without high hopes (which are hopefully more goals than hopes) it's next to impossible to accomplish much of anything.

You have to shoot for the moon. And keep tweaking and keep shooting. Not getting your hopes up means you also are unlikely to be acting in accordance with a genuine belief in your ability to do something. And if you don't believe you can do something, it ain't happening.

So yes, I would rather risk disappointment.

Bernita 8/27/2008 08:44:00 AM  

I try not to hope too much, but there's lots to be said for grim determination.

Melanie Avila 8/27/2008 10:12:00 AM  

Spy, I'm so happy you've already had a small improvement! AND you are counting down until DH comes home. Life is easier for me when I have something to look forward to.

Robin 8/27/2008 04:08:00 PM  

I'm so happy about your foot, Spy!
I have a strange personality. I get my hopes way up, but if they get crashed it only affects me for a little while, and then I move on. It's a little Scarlet O'Hara-ish. And it's not because I'm so confident. It feels self protective.

Anonymous,  8/27/2008 11:38:00 PM  

Right now, I've got my hopes up about something that's more important to me that even writing. Who would've thought? At the same time, if things don't go as planned, then oh well. I don't like would've, could've, should've weighing me down. When I know I've done everything in my power to make things happen, it lessens the blow when it doesn't. So while I think hope is a good thing, I always temper it with realism, too.

spyscribbler 8/28/2008 07:11:00 AM  

Zoe, Amy said it SO much better than I did! I loved her comment!

And yours: shooting for the moon and risking disappointment are two skills I want in my life.

spyscribbler 8/28/2008 07:12:00 AM  

Bernita, SO true! Grim determination pushes me through when the going gets tough, when things feel hopeless. You're right about that.

spyscribbler 8/28/2008 07:12:00 AM  

Melanie, 39 days. I am SO counting down. Okay, it's not 39 exactly, but somewhere around there. I hope you're warm in Aculpulco! It's freezing here!

spyscribbler 8/28/2008 07:14:00 AM  

Robin, that doesn't sound strange; that sounds healthy! I love the Scarlett O'Hara bit. Come to think of it, I could use a good dose of that movie! :-)

spyscribbler 8/28/2008 07:16:00 AM  

Marcia, I like that. Nothing burns more than would've, could've, should've, not even crashing down from disappointment.

Dube 8/31/2008 02:04:00 PM  

I'm really big on not getting my hopes up. I think it's because, with my business, I've had so many potential jobs that sounded really exciting fall through. Or writing contests that I'd pass one stage, and not the next. Etc. For me, I've had to learn to keep my hopes to a minimum because that "crash" when it doesn't work out is really tough! But at least this way, if something does work out, I'll be really, really surprised and happy. :-P