One of the most common things I’ve come across while writing my book is the number of people who express their strong desire to write one, also. What I think they’re really saying is that they yearn for an outlet in which to express their particular gifts of wisdom, passion, and talent with the world in a greater capacity.
I’m grateful when others feel safe sharing their little loves, big dreams, and incredible sorrow with me. I love the impetus my example gives them to move past their pain and fear into a more comfortable and creative version of themselves.
If you’re deliberating a big change right now – whether it be writing a book or shifting direction in any way – it can be daunting. The fear of failure lurks around every corner and will remind you of why you shouldn’t – or can’t – shake things up. The tendency to revert to old patterns will keep you stuck until you decide that the uncertainty associated with change is preferred to remaining the same.
If, or when, you find yourself at a crossroads, perhaps now is the time to step into your power. Here are five tools that inspired me to keep moving forward – and might help you, also.
- That which is most personal is universal. This reminded me that if I experienced certain feelings, likes or dislikes, others probably have felt them, too. I’m not the only one. It pushed me to write about my challenges knowing that others would be able to relate to them. People need what you have to offer.
- “Don’t drink at the water’s edge, throw yourself in. Become the water. Only then will your thirst be quenched.” ~ Jeanette Berson. This taught me that not much changes unless you jump in with both feet. You’ve got to be fully committed to your effort, or there won’t be enough energy to support the change. If you don’t provide the fuel for your desired transformation, who else will?
- Perfection is your enemy. Allow yourself the freedom to experiment and make mistakes. It’s the only way to learn. Mistakes are your friend. The quote that kept me writing – and still does – is by Anne Lamott from “Bird by Bird.” “Perfectionism is the voice of the oppressor, the enemy of the people. It will keep you cramped and insane your whole life, and it is the main obstacle between you and a shitty first draft. I think perfectionism is based on the obsessive belief that if you run carefully enough, hitting each stepping-stone just right, you won’t have to die. The truth is that you will die anyway and that a lot of people who aren’t even looking at their feet are going to do a whole lot better than you, and have a lot more fun while they’re doing it.”
- Never give up on something you think about every day. It’s a sign that you’ve found something that liberates you and brings you joy. Allow yourself to play with ideas you once thought impossible or impractical. If there’s something you absolutely love doing, that makes you lose track of time and come alive when you’re doing it, make more room for it in your life.
- Retain your individuality. Risk being unconventional. Whenever I tried to conform my writing to imitate others or compare myself to other authors, my creativity was stifled and I became stuck. Whatever you do, let your own imagination be the guide. When everyone else zigs, feel free to zag.
Is there something you’ve always dreamed of doing or some aspect of your life you’d like to change? If so, what’s stopping you? Take the plunge with both feet and a silly grin on your face. There’ll never be a perfect time, a perfect roadmap or a perfect outcome. Start your “shitty first attempt.” You’re more likely to experience a softer landing than you think. Remain open to the possibilities, they’re often different and better than you can envision. I’ll be supporting you along the way.
Namaste ~ (the Divine in me recognizes the Divine in you)