Saturday, June 4, 2011

The Process to Reaching Our Goals


As I was reading this snippet from the book “The Zahir” by Paulo Coelho, I thought wow this is what happens with me and it might as well be what happens with the most of us. Okay, maybe not exactly the same or in the sense of writing a book but in the process of achieving other goals that might be as simple as studying for a morning test or really any other goal. I stop for a moment and wonder how many of us keep on writing till reaching the final sentence?



“I notice that I go through the same process as I did when writing my first book: I wake up at nine o’clock in the morning, ready to sit down at my computer immediately after breakfast; then I read the newspapers, go for a walk, visit the nearest bar for a chat, come home, look at the computer, discover that I need to make several phone calls, look at the computer again, by which time lunch is ready, and I sit eating and thinking that I really ought to have started writing at eleven o’clock, but now I need a nap, I wake at five in the afternoon, finally turn on the computer, go to check my e-mails, then remember that I’ve destroyed my Internet connection; I could go to a place ten minutes away where I can get online, but couldn’t I, just to free my conscience from these feelings of guilt, couldn’t I at least write for half an hour?

I begin out of a feeling of duty, but suddenly “the thing” takes hold of me and I can’t stop. The maid calls me for supper and I ask her not to interrupt me; an hour later, she calls me again; I’m hungry, but I must write just one more line, one more sentence, one more page. By the time I sit down at the table, the food is cold, I gobble it down and go back to the computer—I am no longer in control of where I place my feet, the island is being revealed to me, I am being propelled along its paths, finding things I have never even thought or dreamed of. I drink a cup of coffee, and another, and at two o’clock in the morning I finally stop writing, because my eyes are tired.

I go to bed, spend another hour making notes of things to use in the next paragraph—notes which always prove completely useless, they serve only to empty my mind so that sleep can come. I promise myself that the next morning, I’ll start at eleven o’clock prompt. And the following day, the same thing happens—the walk, the conversations, lunch, nap, the feelings of guilt, then irritation at myself for destroying the Internet connection, until I, at last, make myself sit down and write the first page…

Suddenly, two, three, four, eleven weeks have passed, and I know that I’m near the end; I’m gripped by a feeling of emptiness, the feeling of someone who has set down in words things he should have kept to himself. Now, though, I have to reach the final sentence—and I do.“ -Paulo Coelho

Image Credits to: Emiliano Capozoli

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