What’s YOUR Story? (Day #45)

Posted in: Thinking Big

I never know what to make of wake-me-up-in-the-middle-of-the-night ideas.  Does the urgency – the necessity! - with which they present themselves actually mean something?  Are these ideas my best ideas?  Ideas with a capital I?  Or are there some no-ma’am-you-may-not-go-back-to-sleep-now ideas that are better ignored?

I don’t know.

What I do know is that once one of these little suckers lodges itself in your brain, it’s like a splinter in your toe.  It’ll keep bugging you until you do something about it.

Embrace the Detour Day was one of those ideas.  After receiving an email in which a reader used the phrase “embracing the detour” as though it was part of the common lexicon, I woke up at 3am and couldn’t go back to sleep.  I should be encouraging others to do this, was my first thought.  Followed quickly by:  wait a second.  People are already doing this.  I should be celebrating these people.  These people should be celebrating themselves! And then, the grand finale:  There should be a day for that!

Okay, so in all honesty, it’s hard to say whether it was the idea or the crying baby in the room next to me that woke me up, but regardless.  The idea took hold and would not let go.

There should be a day for that.

Since this Sunday is the halfway point for this project and I am nowhere near halfway finished with my novel, and since I typically have an exceedingly hard time heeding my own advice (and thus am more likely to spend Day #50 lamenting my lack of progress than applauding how far I’ve come), I figured that Monday, March 22, 2010, Day #51, was the perfect candidate for such a day.  A day dedicated to the right here, right now.  Not where we’re going.  Not what we’ll do when we get there.  Not even our strategies for dealing with what happens if we never do.

Embrace the Detour Day is meant to encourage us to take our eyes off the Big Goal and celebrate what we’ve already accomplished.

I hope we’ll be able to celebrate ourselves.  At the very least, we’ll celebrate each other.

Which is why, between now and next Sunday, March 21st, I’m collecting detour stories.  I want to know where you were and how you got to where you are now (and what you’re doing now that you’re there). What happened between Then and Now. Between There and Here.  As I said yesterday, it doesn’t matter so much where you’re headed, because Embrace the Detour Day isn’t about getting to the someplace where you’ll eventually end up.  It’s about enjoying where you are right now.  How far you’ve already come.

Your detour story doesn’t have to be long (although it can be).  It doesn’t have to be eloquent.  It doesn’t even have to make sense.  It can be told in words or pictures or some combination of both.  If you’re a blogger and your story is told best through your blog, simply point me there.

On Monday, I will post the highlights.  Snippets and tidbits of every story I receive.  Of course, if you’d like to share your story but would prefer that it remain private or anonymous, just let me know.  Even if you don’t want to share your story, I encourage you to write it anyway.  Detours are hard work.  Rough terrain.  If you’ve managed to embrace your detour, well … that’s enough.  For now, at least.  That’s enough for now.

Send your story to lauren at embracingthedetour dot com or just use the contact form on the sidebar.  Or, if you’d rather just post your story on your own site, send me the link to that.  If you’d like to inspire some of your own readers, feel free to put the ETDD button on your  site.  You can find it here.

I don’t know if this qualifies as an idea with a capital I, but I do know that it’s worth doing.  As one wise soul commented yesterday: Life is much more about detours, the embracing and enjoyment of their essence, than it is about destinations.

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