Friday, January 18, 2019

Editing ~ What to Keep. What to Let Go.


A few weeks ago, I met a woman whom had been recently diagnosed with  with the same rare autoimmune condition which I have.  She said she was making herself crazy by “editingeverything out of her life.”  Everything in her life became a suspect. Could this food, shampoo, lotion, or make-up have triggered an inflammatory response?  Could this person, activity, thought pattern have caused the stress in her life that triggered inflammation?  

I was struck by her use of the word edit as she described her response to a recent life altering diagnosis.  Edit is a word that I associate with writers, teachers, English majors, editors.  It is not a word I associate with the general public, and yet it seems that in these times, so many in my circle of friends, family, and acquaintances are working on  editing something of the other out of our of living experience.

Everyone seems to be tidying up.  Instagram and Facebook are filled with photos of folks cleaning out closets, or they post photos of newly folded clothes.  It seems this act of editingunwanted or unloved “stuff” out of our lives is the new thing to do.  

In writing, and in life, the question is often created in our minds:  What do I keep, and what do I let go?  

Could it be that before we can become good writers, we must learn the art of letting go, or editing, all that impedes our ability to write?  Writing requires good editing, but perhaps before we even begin to write, we must edit all that gets in the way of writing. 

Henry David Thoreau said, “Our life is frittered away by detail…simplify, simplify.

Are you working on editing something out of your life right now?  If so what?  Why did you decided you needed to make this change?