going with that spontaneous vibe

Spontaneous spontaneity. Do you ever find the best things that happen to you are unplanned? Sometimes I obsess and over-think when I need to simply let it (i.e. inspiration, spirituality, a good blog post, etc.) flow.

spontaneity is hatching
spontaneity is hatching

Eek! It boggles my mind when I sit and think. What do the experts have to say about being spontaneous:



  • performed or occurring as a result of a sudden inner impulse or inclination and without premeditation or external stimulus: the audience broke into spontaneous applause a spontaneous display of affection
  • (of a person) having an open, natural, and uninhibited manner.
  • archaic (of a plant) growing naturally and without being tended or cultivated.

Oxford English Dictionary

I especially like the idea of organic growth. In nature beauty isn’t rehearsed; it just happens. Sometimes it takes millions of years to but it still appears random.

well prepared ≠ well received

Returning to school in my late 30’s, I had to learn quickly how to write a good paper. It seemed every class outside of math required a lot of 10+ page papers.

Getting stellar grades was important to me as an adult learner. I poured over peer reviewed research papers for hours, days or weeks to get that certain something that would make my work remarkable.

Overall, my plan succeeded. The more I put in, the better my grades were. Everything was an A and I was proud of my accomplishments thus far.

I remember the first time I got a B on a paper in Health Policy. I was devastated. Hours of research, outlines, and edits formed what I thought to be another masterpiece. How did I take it?

Seriously??? It is me, after all. I cried like a baby in front of the professor.  Waterworks exploded from the depths of my being as I sat in disbelief. How in the world did I get a B?

where’s my mojo now?

There was still one paper due that semester and honestly, I didn’t have the same gusto as before. My best attempts were rebuffed and I had nothing left to give. (dramatic violin music inserted here)

Why waste the effort if I couldn’t get the highest kudos from the prof? I still had to do some research, but this time I limited it to an hour. Next, writing the paper flew as I wrote and only edited once.

Feh! Sheepishly, I placed the assignment on the prof’s desk. It had my name on it but none of the sweat from previous work. A week later, my returned paper had a big fat red A on it.

What, what what? How did this happen? What I thought was utter crap, got the better grade. I learned that it is not necessarily how many times I edited and how many journal articles I cited as much as the content I contributed. I let it flow out of my brain and onto the paper.

now what?

Believe it or not there is a point to my seemingly endless rambling about the salad days. I have since learned that my best writing occurs when I stay in the now and don’t over-think-edit-obsess.

Upon finding inspiration, I sit on my comfy couch in my fortress of solitude and find that spontaneous vibe. Typically, it takes between 30 minutes to an hour to compose, edit and publish a post.

I read articles exalting outlines and such. Blech! If I edit more than once, the post is sure to be garbage. Research includes looking up words in the OED when it suits me or better yet in the Urban Dictionary for a vernacular definition.

lesson learned; it’s all about the outcome

I understand there is a difference between a research paper and one of my meandering posts. What grade would a professor give me now? Who cares?

I graduated with two degrees and it doesn’t matter how much work goes into what I do.  My prof was right to give me a lesser grade for a bullshit paper. The significance lies in content and what I produce.

If you are a blogger, how much time do you dedicate to editing or even considering your topic. Like me, do you find it better to click the publish button and move on, or are you a planner? What does your spontaneous vibe look like?

By the way, I only edited this once, so it is bound to be full of typos. One of the byproducts of a seriously spontaneous vibe.



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