birds in a barrel's mission is to release creative nonfiction into the wild.

40 Days & 40 Writes is its first project.

The daily opportunity

I see almost every day as a do-over, or maybe a start-over.

There may be tasks I would like to do each day, or ones I would like to complete. Even the projects which are spread over a longer period of time are actually a series of smaller, discrete things to do. As I learn lessons and gain insights, I may go back to apply what I have learned.

Less and less is set in the stone of tradition. I have learned so much since I began and starting over, or doing it all over, may be a shortcut to a stronger result.

I am learning to recognize the benefits of doing things over. I may still not be convinced, when the computer eats my nearly-completed draft, that the next version is better. Doing something over more evidently leads to a better result if it is my idea to do it again.

There are times when I am grateful for opportunities to do something over. It gives us ways to apply what we learned doing it first, doing it the hard way.

Some tasks are less difficult if we assume they are one-time experiences. We learn by doing, but are not eager to repeat the experience. There may be a limit to how much we are eager to learn.

Some experiences are painful and frustrating. We may wish there were a way to start over, to do it again a different way, but we are hesitant to try again.

Even when we have a chance to do those things over again, the pain and frustration is still within us.

Each day is a new opportunity. We practice and we learn and grow from our experiences. We apply the lessons from our previous efforts and learn from our mistakes. Each step is a new adventure as we draw from the last.

We try to put our values into practice each day and learn lessons for tomorrow.

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