Thursday, August 17, 2006

morning mantras

Pay yourself first

Be true to yourself / selfish of every second of your day*

Focus on purposeful learning

Believe in synchronicity

Do your morning pages / highlight / blog

And I look over this amazing advice from my neighbor, Julianna Baggot, who teaches Creative Writing at FSU (for more see,

"this is part of a speech i give to the students called "pay yourself first" ... i ALWAYS use my fresh brain cells on my own work. i actually say to the grad students: I promise you this. I will never ever use my fresh brain cells to read your work. And I never want you to use yours on your students. In this way I'm being a role model, talking about the life-long challenge of balancing art and life. i often end up reading their work late at night, sacrificing a little sleep time, but ultimately i've stayed productive here. and therefore, in the long run, a better teacher. b/c if you don't pay yourself first, you resent your students, you feel bitter and like they're the enemy. if you pay yourself first -- even if your best time is 4:30 in the afternoon and you know you will pay yourself -- you feel ebullient and generous ... or at least i do. the work gives me energy"

* Note on the being selfish thing: in the spirit of Ayn Rand (no, I don't subscribe to every bit of objectivism), this mantra doesn't mean that it's you against the world. It's the idea that if in your life you selfishly value your partner and their existance in your life, your doing things for them--giving them hugs, helping them with their projects, etc--is actually a selfish act because it helps your world be better. But it also believes that if you are in a dead end job that is sucking away your life, you should get out of it.

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