Still Writing . . . One Year Later

Today is the anniversary of my first post at tjhirst.com. On December 29th, 2007, I begin with these words and have written 315 posts in the 365 days since.

What is your favorite post? Search the index and let me know in the comments. On Friday I will republish the most mentioned post and those who chose it.

Until then, I’m choosing some of my favorites from the archives. Today, I share the lesson I’ve learned from parenting that I applied to improve my writing—consistency.

(From the archives: Crediting Consistency, originally published May 23, ’08)

Be consistent. That’s the parenting advice I most often received as a new mom. From that perspective I envisioned that meant always giving the same discipline to correct a behavior.

Later, I found that in the confusion of the moment, that I reacted more than I acted. Consequently, I stressed that my parenting did not fulfill some all-important rule of being a good parent.

Now, my children are older and the pressure of hands-on parenting has eased. In this more relaxed state, I noted their progression at their annual piano recital. Consistency. The word slipped into my thoughts alongside my joy at watching my oldest daughter perform. The word came to comfort.

When I calculate the years of consistent lessons and add them to the consistent schedules for practice, I now see the advice to “be consistent” wholly different. Be consistent in listening to the good and the bad. Be consistent when they are not. Be consistent in what I can maintain. Be consistent in steady support.

More than good luck or good genes, I credit consistency.

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