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Motivational Mondays: Needs, Haves, Wants

“I need to fold the laundry and put it away.”  “I have to get my word count up!”  “I have to remember to take dinner out of the freezer to thaw.”  “I need to get that submission off.”

When I say these things to myself, what I really mean is: “If I don’t fold the laundry and put it away, we’ll be living out of a basket for the next week and I’ll go bananas.” “If I don’t get my word count up, I’ll feel awful and scared that I won’t have another creation to get to the world in a nice timely fashion that will help my career’s momentum.”  “If I forget to take something out of the freezer, I’ll get an eye roll from hard working husband over having frozen pizza again.”  “If I don’t get that submission off, I won’t make a sale and I won’t keep this career going.”

Errrch! Yesterday, as I lay cuddling with my daughter and the guilt creeped in, I noticed these whoppers for lies I’ve been telling myself. Total BS, folks! On a stick!

The truth is, I don’t have to or need to do any of this. In fact, if I don’t do them and all those ugly consequences occur, so what? Have to and need to are lies.

Whoa there, Amber! You might be thinking: I definitely have to go to work because I need to pay my bills or I shall be living on the streets.

My answer is, well, maybe. OR, perhaps it is that you want to go to work, because you want to pay your bills because you don’t want to live on the streets. But you don’t have to. You could give it all up and take a tent to the woods and join a commune with free wi-fi, if you wanted to.

So, I told myself this very thing. It isn’t that I have to do any of it. Laundry, dinner, writing, submitting. It is that I want to. I want an organized life because it makes for easier everything. And I want word counts and submissions because they make me feel accomplished and fulfilled.

And as I changed the way I talked to myself–that slightly scitzophrenic penchant all writers have–the emotions surrounding the task evolved. The guilt whispered away. In its place came the promise of the joy I would feel once my tasks are complete.

I challenge you to try it today. How many have to’s are on your list? How does it feel if you change that one little word in your self speak?

Remember, we are magicians of words. The right incantation can make all the difference! (Just ask the naked Wiccans–a guess–next door.)

:}Amber Scott



About Amber Scott Project

Amber Scott writes romance across time and genre with three things in common: fate, love and complications. You can find her erotica titles at

16 responses »

  1. This is such a great post (she says as she looks out at the squalor of her office). How did you get so smart? LOL. I’m trying it: I want to have a clean office I feel happy in.

  2. Amber, I need the address of the commune in the woods with the free wi-fi please? I think they are my chosen people! But you are right. We don’t do this work because someone makes us…we do it because it’s our dream, it makes our souls sing and our hearts soar. Well sometimes the opposite. But it’s our calling and we do it for love. Pay is just a very lucky byproduct!

  3. I’m trying but my inner critic is laughing her ass of and telling me: nice try!

  4. First of all, I wasn’t naked! Lol…That would terrify the neighbors!

    Because of you, I am inspired to leave the laundry in the dryer! My husband, on crutches with a broken foot, can just hobble in there to get clean undies. I managed to clean them at least!

    I am also just going to stand by today as the various piece of food, hair, play-doh and at least one dead cricket on my kitchen floor stage a coup and take us hostage! You don’t scare me dead cricket!!!

    I am already at work and since I actually help save other people’s lives, I guess I will stay… but I am tempted to go home and unpack my tent!

    I think I will just go home and take a nap! I feel so inspired!

    Lol….I love motivational mondays!

  5. Applause, Applause! Nice way to look at things. I love Motivational Mondays too. Reading it is absolutely the last excuse I can give myself before I buckle down and revise. So… I’m now cracking my knuckles and off I go! =)

  6. I HAVE a big bootay. I WANT a smaller bootay. I NEED a healthier bod.

    Does that count? lol

    I know just what you mean, tho. We are born with a guilt complex! But I do try to schedule some cuddle in because I get so busy with work (which is, of course, in my home office) that I sometimes forget that my kids will only want to cuddle for a few more years.

    I am also learning NOT to feel guilty that I am taking time away from [insert list of 1000 things] because my kids need or want me for something. That is my first job. All else is secondary. I love my work and my other 999 things, but the little ones get the hands and hugs before those other things. Usually.

    OK! I’m working on it…..

  7. Amber, fantastic ideas to think about! As Stephen Covey says, “Put first things first.” Once we determine what our first things are, we are grounded by them and our perspective naturally shifts from “I HAVE to” to “I WANT to”. I WANT to put my family first because that brings me joy and peace. The rest will just HAVE to take a number and get in line. 🙂


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