Gigster Insight: Writing Your Story
Writing the Great American novel is something many of us have thought about…at least in passing. Maybe we have family and friends who struggle to write or are prolific writers. In both instances, we don’t see ourselves doing the same.
I challenge you to consider yourself a writer. Yes, you. You are a writer of your own story. We often don’t think of our life as a book that is being written with every experience we have. Sometimes we think that our story has already been written (stereotypes, expectations, limitations, etc.). Other times we feel like we are staring at the proverbial blank page that is our life: no direction, no purpose, no motivation. All that said, you are really the one holding the pencil. You are the one who chooses what paper to write on, and for how long you write, and what font you use. You, whether you like or not, are the author of your life.
That can be a daunting reality, to say the least.
It can also be liberating. Liberating in the sense that you decide what chapters will be included in your book, what themes you include (or not), and what cast of characters will be immortalized in the pages. All of this requires attention, intention, and action. Let’s discuss these one at a time:
You must pay attention:
As an adult, life doesn’t just happen to you. You have to pay attention to what is happening and why. Learn to make meaning from your experiences in order to be able to understand what is happening.
You must have intention:
By this I mean at some point you will get a sense of what is happening and why. From those lessons, you will become purposeful in what other lessons you want to have, and therefore what experiences you want to bring into your life.
You must act
At the risk of overusing the cliché: this is not a spectator sport. You must engage, you must do, and you will finish.
Doing all of these things inform your “writing process”. As it becomes possible, choose the experiences you want to have in your life. Choose the people you want to come in contact with and learn from (or learn with). Choose the things you want to create. In so doing, you will see that you are also becoming part of other people’s story. Along the margins, we co-create the stories of others: we give feedback, we create or remove obstacles, we support or break down. In that way, the books we write independently inform a must larger narrative of humanity. Isn’t that cool!
As a Collegiate Gigster, you are good at bringing aspects of your life together to create something new. This entrepreneurial spirit is inherent in who you are and what you do. I ask that you use the metaphor of the book to provide a framework with which to capture your creativity, your ideas, your contribution to the world. You never know, you may have a best seller!
This article is also published in a newsletter published monthly called The Gigster 'Zine! that is a production of the Colégas Group. Please visit the website to learn more, sign up for the newsletter, and for finding innovative employment opportunities.