Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Success and Fulfillment

I was a school teacher for thirty-four years. I remember during my student teaching experience, one of my supervising teachers telling me, "You learn a lot of things in those education classes, but one thing they don't teach you is how to be a dedicated, effective teacher and still have time for a successful marriage." He was divorced at the time. I also remember reading an interview by a well-known contemporary poet who said that the time and commitment necessary to become a successful writer could be hard on a marriage.

One measure of success as a writer (and some would say the only) is how many books an author sells. I'm not going to bother debating that mindset, since there is some obvious sense to it. However, at just past my 63rd birthday, I find I've lost my desire to work full time, help my family full time, and then to write full time. There was a time when I did that all at once. I don't begrudge that time; I just feel the need to adjust the "timing" of my life. And, luckily, I think I have the opportunity to adjust without discomforting anyone.

I find myself more interested in the success of my total life, not just my writing life. I find myself not wanting to defer fulfillment in one area of life in order to shift that "currency" to some other area of my life. I think I've had considerable success in my life, and now I want to experience the fulfillment that has come with my dedication and commitment. Each in its own time, including fulfillment.

I intend to write; in fact, I've never stopped writing. I just think I'll focus on managing my time so that I do one thing at a time, do each thing well, take the time to enjoy the fruits of my action, and then move on.

Heck, I should have been doing that my whole life! Too much multi-tasking makes Tom if not a dull boy, certainly a frenetic one.

Copyright 2015 by Thomas L. Kepler, all rights reserved


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