Monday Master Class - The Strategic Surrender

 Life is described as many things, a journey, a trial, a learning experience, a battle... I'm not sure I feel as though I have to battle life exactly, but what, or more to the point, who I do need to battle is myself. I think this is often the case for many of us, I know I can certainly be my own worst enemy and most severe opponent in this game of life. I'm a balls to the walls, pedal to the metal, all or nothing, go until the game is over kind of person. I put the blinders on, become incredibly maniacal and get the job done... but to what end? Even when I win, even when I accomplish what I set out to do, I think I lose any joy there may have been in the win when I go about it like that. Still, in my head, surrender is not an option, so the idea of even a strategic surrender does not set well with me. However, as I've been mulling this concept the past week, I'm starting to see the simple genius of the strategic surrender.

Take for example how I spent a good portion of my afternoon...
playing Cityville. Now I know, you're thinking, get a life... but no for real I've been playing this game for a few months now, since it started really and as I sit chained to my laptop for hours on end, its easy to check in every day and complete the challenges and build my city. Only thing is, in this game, expanding the boundaries of your city is damn near impossible and my city was becoming crowded and disorganized and I stopped finding any joy in the game.

For about a week now I had been considering bulldozing and starting over, well today, I bit the bullet, took a chance, bulldozed a ton, moved a bunch, am still a really long way from finishing, but for the first time in ages I feel hope that my little city may turn into something sweet and wonderful that I enjoy playing again. :)

Strategic surrender. I gave up much of what I had accumulated, to gain peace and happiness with my city.

Now take Florida, if getting there is my win, then whatever I have to do to get there is a win, even if the thing I have to do is let go of some of what I want... for now. I realized this past week that I'm behind on meeting certain goals to get there on my timeline, so my choices seem to be, set back my deadlines, give up, or make compromises on my wish list. I'm not willing to set back the date, so I've been examining my other choices and compromising on what I want, in other words, a strategic surrender. Ultimately I'll get it all, but for now, its seems wiser to take less in the moment to get it all later.

For example,
some compromises I'm willing to make if need be to the Florida dream is to take a smaller apartment at first, to not have a car for a while--or at least not the dream convertible ;-)--I'm even willing to wait on my annual pass if need be because getting there is the win.

One of the other compromises I faced this week was in my writing. It gets a little complicated at this point so please bear with me. Everybody needs to have income to survive. I want my income to come solely from my writing so I don't have to split my focus which would ultimately cause my writing to suffer. I have a need to tell stories, and writing this new sci-fi series has been so incredibly satisfying that if I had it my way, I'd get to write something like twenty books and tell this long drawn out complex story that tells of soul mates, and the power of undying love. However, the reality is that as much as I love the new genre, it is new for me and I'm going slower than I usually do and for any of you out there who write for a living you understand that unless you hit the exact mark with a lot of readers, your quantity of books is important to your financial bottom line.

So I've narrowed my choices to two: shorten the reformation books to novella length so I can put more out quicker, or write something else for a few books and switch back and forth. I don't want to sacrifice on story quality ever and as much as I'd love to delve into this series and not come up until its all finished, the facts are that those books need to be full length to do them justice, so my decision is made and once again, I feel like that is a strategic surrender. I don't get exactly what I want, but I can make this compromise because in the end, I'll get that series out there and it will be the way I want it, not compromised in length or detail simply so I could get the books out faster and at the same time, I'll be able to write a large quantity of shorter stories that I think my readers will love. This seems very much like win-win to me!

This concept is still very new for me but I've already found shifting my head in this direction has given me strength and focus, two things I crave desperately! I feel like all my life I've muscled through, this seems more like using my brain than my muscles and for me, that's a good choice!

There you have the details of my strategic surrenders this week, what about you?

Is there something in your life you are trying to accomplish, but you're struggling? Does it seem impossible to break through and get everything you want? Perhaps you could take a breath, step back, and consider a strategic surrender, you never know, it could be the exact thing you need. I find having these choices made, and how comfortable I am with them, has given me a huge charge in my momentum that I truly needed, I'm refreshed and ready for the new week and a new book, next up... Thursday's Soul Mate entry... I'm putting a lot of effort into this week's post because I find the topic truly eluding me and I am determined to get on top... so to speak. ;-) Have a great Monday! ~ Samantha

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