Motivation and Passion vs. Discipline and Purpose

Alright, it’s time to get serious here. Many writer’s rely on the former and look down upon the latter because they either fined them too restricting or they take them in the strictest interpretation.

Motivation and Passion are great things, especially when they’re being used correctly toward the right goals. The thing about them though, they don’t last. Discipline and Purpose however, do.

Sure, when you’re filled with motivation or are in the heat of passion about something, you get this burst of creative energy you think will never end. You enter a high that seems to go on forever, and you just write away like a mad bomber, throwing stuff on the page with no regard for literary convention or safety. You reach the height and depth of your creativity and your transcend the stars as you create something truly beautiful in your mind (I know, it’s happened to me).

You write for what seems an eternity but is only a couple hours. Nine, ten, eleven hours of pure and focused writing the likes of which you’ve never done before and would be a long time before you do so again.

The only problem is, that feeling, that burst of energy doesn’t come often. And, more often than not, it doesn’t come at all.

Which is where discipline and purpose come in.

When one has discipline and purpose, it makes no difference if they’re motivated or passionate. They have a consistency that borders on meditative and their brain kicks into autopilot when it comes to the creative process. When one has a clear goal with their writing, a clear purpose, and is willing enough to enact the discipline to get there, they not only develop a habit of writing but become prolific as well (especially if they have the propensity for creating a lot of material in any given setting).

The thing about discipline and purpose is that you don’t need to enter a literary high or a spontaneous burst of creativity. When those things come, they amplify the discipline and purpose you have already, helping you reach your goal faster but that’s all. When you put motivation and passion (which only inflates your ego) to the side, you actually start doing (which is the most important thing) and you ingrain that habit into your psyche, which bleeds into other things as well.

Discipline and Purpose are two things you can apply to anything in your life, especially writing. For those who have trouble getting started or staying consistent. I suggest you pick a pace (a pace that you could keep up with no matter your schedule) and stick to it. A pace that, if you don’t stick to it you’re just being lazy. Ex. 1000 per day (3-5 pages). Anyone can do it. YOU can do it.

The thing is not doing a vast amount in a short period of time but a small amount over a long period of time. It’s forming the habit that’s more important than the quantity of work you put out there. If you want to be a writer, a great writer, then you have to spend every day evolving and improving your craft. And you can’t do that if you depend on motivation and passion to carry you forward.

Well, as always, that’s my spiel on the subject.

Till next week . . .

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