Thoughts on Writing Discipline

Self-discipline. So much is written about it. It is valuable and desired attitude. But I’ve never felt I could hold onto it for very long. Self-discipline was not something I saw modeled as a child, simply not one of my strong abilities. Whenever I hear advice to writers to exert self-discipline, I tend to get this certain whirling in my brain and go a little haywire-flooey. (Isn’t that a great word? I will have to do a post about it.)

Thinking on this, I looked at the books I’ve written, and many of the things I’ve accomplished–craft making, decorating, even watering my adored hanging ferns most every day at times this summer so as to keep them alive. I realized something heartening. I’ve done all out of love.

I have written out of love of words and writing and books, love of beauty, money, vanity and ego, of wanting to go into a bookstore and see my name on a book. I am up early and stealing this time now before my rambunctious grandson arrives, all because of the love of writing and saying something and being heard.

Love is far more powerful than self-discipline.


6 thoughts on “Thoughts on Writing Discipline

  1. Oh, I love that last line! I may have to have it stitched in cross stitch, along with my other favs! Now I’ll have to go to the Good Book and look into the book of Timothy.
    Can’t wait to read when you post about “flooey”. I grew up hearing all sorts of words and saying that lots of folks have never heard; one of the many blessings of living among simple hardworking country people.


  2. I also love saying something and being heard–especially when speaking in a meeting–I have everyone’s undivided attention. It is not a vain thing, it is appreciating the gift God gave me and enjoying other’s response to it.


  3. Haywire-flooey…have never heard that word before but there is no mistaking its meaning even if you didn’t use it in a sentence!

    In thinking about this for a few minutes I was going to say …

    I think I witnessed Self-discipline powered by Love, in the parenting role in the case of one parent. Physical pains from health issues were toughed out because children were depending on them. When the children grew up it all disappeared.

    Love is the most powerful motivator of all. Love IS the power of self discipline. There is no self discipline for doing a Work without it.

    In the case of the other parent, I believe they just had a love or passion for many things, so self discipline was never a problem.

    But now as I think about applying the above theory to me, I’m thinking that theory by itself doesn’t hold true. I love doing many things but my health problems have smashed my self discipline to smithereens.

    There are a lot of factors influencing the amount of self discipline we have at any given moment, that’s for sure.

    Were you consciously thinking of 2 Ti 1:7 when you used love, power (ful) and self discipline in your last sentence? I need to meditate on it more for sure.


    • Oh, Denise, so very well said. Thank you. My health problems smashed the self-discipline I had to smithereens, too. But as I change and grow, I look back and see that love was there all the time, motivating me, but often times I took the ball and ran all out–I wanted what I wanted and pushed to get it. I thought everything depended on me. Only when I could be absorbed into the writing, or any creativity, would I then forget all the pushing. I guess I sort of fell into love each time. Today I more try to listen and be directed, rather than controlling everything. No easy task for me.

      Possibly my last sentence was brought up by 2Timothy 1:7, because I affirm that verse all the time.



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