During the entire month of April, I’m participating in the A to Z Blogging Challenge. The alphabet will be my motivation, though the content of the posts will be very similar to what regular readers are used to. Check out the link for more amazing bloggers, and enjoy April!

Once upon a time, I drew things. Like with a pencil. I wasn’t bad at it. I wasn’t great, either. I was also decent with water color. Not great, just decent. Could I have been great at it? Very possibly. That’s not be being vain. I think innate talent leads to greatness.

If you stick with it long term. Why am I not a great artist? That’s easy. Because I stopped doing it. Okay, maybe I wouldn’t have been fantastic anyway. It’s definitely possibly I may never have been more than a little better than average. But, we’ll never know. I didn’t stick it out.

Sometimes I regret that. Usually when I want an really kick-ass piece of artwork for something I’m working on, and can’t create it myself. But it never held my interest enough to stay with it long term.

Costume design – I stuck with that a little longer. Business document writing. Photography. Computer programming. Piano playing. School.

The list goes on. I suspect that had I put some effort into any of those things long term, I’d be a lot better at them than I am now.

I didn’t. And there are times I wish I had, but not enough to regret it or make me go back and change it. Because I’m fortunate that it’s still an option for me.

But my writing. I winge and moan and complain about how hard it is. “Why is this so painful”. Especially on those days (weeks, so very sorry about that, all), when I’ve sunk into the very pits of depression. And I tend to vent publicly because that’s how I clear it out of my system.

But even given those low points (that aren’t actually related to my writing directly and are mostly chemical, but seem to hinge on my writing because it means so much to me), I still love it. I’m in it for the long haul. I may not be willing to take hours a day in front of a sketch pad to become a brilliant artist, but I’m willing to wear out my fingers and wrist and brain and keyboard and notepad and usb drive to get better at this.

This is a long-term thing for me. It pushes me to learn, grow, and excel on a daily basis.

I think everyone needs a long-term motivation that drives them to be the person they want to be. Something that’s always a carrot to reach for, and you need a nibble occasionally, but never catch it, unless there’s another, bigger carrot to take its place.

What’s a long term part of your life and motivation?