Just Keep Swimming: Finding Encouragement Everywhere

As the parent of a small child, my husband and I have found that a larger and larger percentage of our movies start with a rather distinctive castle. And we tend to watch the same movies over and over and over again.

But as a writer – and one who’s been feeling a bit down these past few weeks – I’ve also enjoyed dissecting these same movies and finding both really clever plotting and character development, along with personal encouragement.

Take Finding Nemo (one of the kidlet’s current favorites), where one of the repeated and thematic lines is “Just Keep Swimming.”

You know how I interpret the line:

  • Just keep swimming when things are dark. When you’re scared. And when you have no idea what else you can or should do.
  • Just keep swimming when the world around you seem to be falling in, nothing is going right, and frankly, doom could well be around the next corner.
  • Just keep swimming because it’s the only thing you can do. And it’s the only thing YOU can absolutely control, even as the rest of the world spirals away in free-fall.
  • Just keep swimming when you don’t know where you’re going. When you don’t know where you are, or if anything you do makes any difference.

In a writing career – and in life overall – things aren’t always easy, and sometimes you’re left alone in the darkness, in the bottom of a pit you carved out without noticing. All the decisions you make seem to be wrong, or they don’t seem to be getting you where you want to be.

All you can do is keep going. Believe in the fact that this is just one dark spot, and if you keep moving forward – keep swimming – you’ll find your way out. Things will get better. You can’t control what happens in the world around you, but you can control your own actions: if you don’t give up, don’t surrender, keep moving forward, of course you’ll get where you need to be, right?

Or at the very least, you’ll no longer be where you were.

Whether it means you’re thigh-stuck in revision-gook, in a low-spot personally, or just feeling a bit stuck in a rut, keep moving forward. You’ll get there.

What do you think? Or have I just been watching WAY too many kids movies? 😉

Thanks for reading. Have a great week. 🙂