It is Wednesday night and this is the point of the week where I typically have accomplished the following things:

  1. Prepped for and taught two classes.
  2. Written, published, and publicized two or three blog posts.
  3. Written, recorded, edited, and posted the next podcast.
  4. Written or edited several pages of my own work-in-progress.

I have, at the start of this post, accomplished only #1 of this list of four things. (This post will help me be half done with #2.)

Look at that face. It's easy to allow her to distract me from my work. Usually, that's an excuse and a point of creative resistance, but sometimes a beagle is a valid distraction.
Look at that face. It’s easy to allow her to distract me from my work. Usually, that’s an excuse and a point of creative resistance, but sometimes a beagle is a valid distraction.

Is it Resistance?

Sometimes, I allow the dog to be an entry point for resisting my creative and writing-related work.

She needs attention or to go outside. Or, she finds a food wrapper or tissue that she feels deserves to be shredded and I decide I must clean that up before I sit down to do my work.

But this week has been different. Joy is 12 years old, and she has had some trouble with her pancreas this year.

Starting yesterday afternoon, I’ve been cleaning up the results of her pancreatic attacks, trotting her to the back yard on a nearly hourly basis, and consoling her hurt beagle feelings.

It’s cut into my normal schedule.

And that’s okay. At least, for now.

Sometimes the beagle is resistance, disguised as need. And sometimes, she really does need my attention, and my work can wait.

Which is a truth about other kinds of resistance in our creative lives. Sometimes, we are using outside factors as an excuse to not write, or paint, or build our new business. Other times, we really can put our work (creative or otherwise) into proper perspective and tend to legitimate needs in our lives.

It isn’t always easy to tell which is which, but it is good to keep this in mind: Battling resistance does require us to set up boundaries and protect our creative time with vigilance, but being human sometimes requires us to put the work aside.

Now, back to writing the podcast…it’ll be a long night.

Happy writing, everyone.

Sometimes the Beagle is Resistance