I promised myself a long time ago that I would never write anything when I was really angry or annoyed. Anything written in those moments sounds like a rant. Well, I am breaking that promise today.
Here is what happened: I was talking to an industry acquaintance this morning. It was a lovely and pleasant conversation about this that and the other. Mostly food. At the end of the call, she asked if I had started my dream project yet. I had told her about it a year ago. I was quiet and then proceeded to do what I have been telling my students, mentees and kids not to do for years – I gave her my “someday speech”.
I have the “someday speech” perfected. “Oh, I cannot start my project right now. I don’t have the [pick one] – funding/time/brains/talent/clothes/office/chair.”
My acquaintance listened quietly and then said, “Really? You are the one always encouraging me to do try and do new things and you are not starting your dream project because you don’t have time?” (Yes, this conversation, it was time I was lacking or so I thought).
I wanted to hide in a corner after that call. I felt so ashamed. I had been telling everyone for years to walk away from the someday schtick and here I was, selling myself on it.
So let me tell you (and myself) this loud and clear: Someday never comes.
There is always a reason for not doing something. Always. I have used every single one of these reasons. Every one. And they are darn good reasons:
- I have no time.
- My take: Yes, I do. I have time. I just have to find it. Otherwise, it is a self fulfilling prophecy.
- I don’t have the funds.
- Well, this depends. We may not have a million dollars to start the project but since when do we not have the capacity to write a business plan to start planning how to get the million dollar funding? Just saying.
- I am not talented enough.
- This is my personal favorite and I have had an editor tell me so. So, I can either listen to this person and be miserable or do what my heart says is right. Talent is very subjective, by the way. I saw a movie and hated it. Hubby saw the same one and loved it. Who is right?
- The time is just not right.
- Never is. Really. But then Rowlings wrote her book sitting at a coffee table in some coffee shop as she survived on food stamps. Now don’t tell me that it is okay since she was talented. How would she have known that until the book became a smashing blockbuster. It is now or never, baby.
I can go on. But do you really want me to?
SO – here is the deal. I am making a commitment, right here, right now to start my dream project. As a show of commitment, I finished the executive summary that I needed to write to create the business plan.I am ready to go. Are you?
And for the love of God, if you ever hear me say, “I’ll do it someday,” please remind me of this post and then give me a swift kick in the behind.
Monica Bhide is an engineer turned food/travel/parenting writer based out of Washington DC. Her work has appeared in national and international publications, including Food & Wine, The New York Times, Parents, Cooking Light, Prevention, Health, Self, Bon Appetit, Saveur, and she is a frequent contributor to NPR’s Kitchen Window. She has published three cookbooks, and her essays have been included in Best Food Writing anthologies in 2005, 2009 and 2010.