August 30, 2013

Who Am I? - Susan Barclay

There a few questions I've recently been asking myself. 'Who am I?' is one of them, and from this follow 'What should I be doing?', 'What is the best use of my time?', and 'What do I want to accomplish in life?'

I've been thinking about these things for a very good reason. Last year, a neighbour presented me with a network marketing opportunity. It was a great product, I wasn't feeling sufficiently challenged at work, and becoming a consultant would definitely push me out of my comfort zone. Besides, we could certainly use the extra money! I didn't 'over-think' it and, though I seem to recall praying about it, I'm not so sure I listened for the answer.

I placed my business order, had some launch parties, distributed catalogues, attended local meetings, and started selling. I was inspired, but business was slow. With two teenagers, a husband, a dog, a house, and writing, I didn't have enough 'nooks and crannies' in my life to build a team. I planned to relaunch and push hard this fall, but as I considered the future, I came to realize I was sidetracked from my true purpose.

Who am I? I am a writer. I have been gifted by God with the ability to write, to create stories and share ideas. I have something to say.

What should I be doing? Taking care of my family. And writing, of course.

What is the best use of my time? Keeping things clean and organized so that life runs smoothly for all the members of our household. (We made a really good start on this in July as we got ready for our August holiday. Now I just need to stay on top of it and declutter even further.) I also need to be writing - every day. Other writers do it, and I can, too. It's been said that the way you spend your time defines your priorities. You can't call yourself a writer and not write. A writer is someone who writes, period.

What do I want to accomplish in life? I want to be published, yes. I want people to read what I've written. I want to make a positive difference in the lives of others. Sometimes I just want to entertain them and take them away to a different place for their pleasure and relaxation. I also want to leave a legacy to my children. One that says I spent my time doing what I was created for, and they can do the same.

So I'm setting my business aside. I still love the product and if anyone wants to buy it, they'll be able to get it through me. But I've decided not to build a network marketing team. That's not who I am.

I'm me, and I'm a writer.

c. Susan Barclay
For more of my writing, please visit my website at


  1. Thanks for sharing your journey, Susan. There are so many things that can distract us from God's calling. I'm in the process of "decluttering" too.

  2. Perhaps your venture into this marketing venture was a necessary experience for you to see even more clearly who you really are and what you should be doing.

    We hope we can look forward to more of your writings right here on InScribe Writers Online.

  3. Susan,
    Every writer has faced this at some point during our writing "career". It's a juggling act sometimes with family, outside commitments and then being attentive to writing. It's a matter of setting priorities. Thank you for a timely article!

  4. I can relate well to this - thanks for articulating your thoughts on this problem we writers seem to encounter (over and over and over.... ;-)

  5. It is so liberating when we discover who we are NOT, (as opposed to always focusing on who we are...) I've learned this lessons as well, and sometimes we just have to say NO to things

  6. Thanks everyone, for your feedback, encouragement and wisdom.

  7. Sometimes we need to earn money from things outside of writing, but if you can manage not to have to, it sure leaves more time for the writing. That said, outside jobs can often enlarge who we are, and give back to others in ways that our writings can't. Follow God's leading. That's the most important thing.

  8. That's true, Cathy. I didn't mean to imply that I don't have a day job, because I do work part-time as a librarian. I'm also blessed to have a supportive husband working full-time.

  9. Susan, how true that we are so easily distracted. I've also been trying to focus, since we can't do everything. How freeing it is! Thank you for sharing your experiences.


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