From Procrastinating Writer to Author of 10+ Books (and Counting)

Most people don’t believe this about me, but I used to be the biggest procrastinating writer in the world. In fact, I was Queen Procrastinating Writer. If I could find something to put ahead of my writing, I would. I once got down on my hands and knees and scrubbed my bathroom floor with a sponge to avoid doing my writing.

Yes. Really.

I used to have long stretches of time where I wouldn’t do any writing. My longest stretch was two years.

But in 2008, I had enough. I didn’t know what the hell my problem was, but it was time for me to get serious about creating the writing career I wanted for myself. And also writing that novel I’d been talking about writing since I was 13.

Because it was torturous to go to bed every night feeling like I let myself down and didn’t do the writing that was burning inside me. I couldn’t take it anymore. 

So I decided I was going to write my first novel that year, by my birthday in September. And to help me stay accountable and get some consistency in my writing life, I’d also start a blog so I could write about my journey to writing my first novel, and motivate, inspire, educate and empower other procrastinating writers who struggled like I did.

My commitment was to write and publish one blog post a week for a year. It was the first time I’d ever been consistent with my writing. I missed a few weeks here and there, but by the end of the year, I’d written around 30-40 blog posts. Not too shabby for a writer who couldn’t stop procrastinating.

But I still wasn’t making a ton of progress on my creative writing goals. I wrote a novel, but I still hadn’t published a novel.

It wasn’t until several years later (in 2015) when I finally had enough of my BS excuses around why I couldn’t finish my novel and put it out there. I set a publication date and that was that. I got it out into the world. 

I rode that high for a few months, but I’d fallen right back into my usual patterns of procrastinating and not doing my writing. I justified it by saying that I’d published a novel already that year.

But so fucking what? If I want to be an author of hundreds of books, both fiction and nonfiction, I don’t have time to sit around twiddling my thumbs and not doing my writing. I had to do something major.

Then in 2016, everything shifted. I met a mentor who has written and published 47+ books (46 of which have been bestsellers). She inspired me to step it up BIG TIME in my writing life. That year, I wrote 9 new books and published 7 of them in different capacities (5 on Amazon, 2 as freebies on my blog).

And in 2017, I’m even more driven and focused and getting even more writing done than I ever have before. I’m currently writing anywhere from 3,000-5,000 words a day, and sometimes upwards of 7,000. All on my various writing projects (as a multi-passionate author I could never just work on one thing). 

So, how did I get here? How did I go from avoiding my writing by doing ridiculous household chores to writing thousands of words a day, unleashing new books on the regular and publishing blog posts almost daily?

Here’s how…

1. Have A Bigger Vision

When I first started my blog in 2008, I didn’t have a vision that went past that first year. I was just going to write and publish one post a week and blog about my journey to writing my first novel. But once I accomplished that, I needed to create a bigger vision for what I was doing. Otherwise I’d never stick with it.

That vision has shifted A LOT over the years and will continue to, as I learn and grow and change. But it started with one thing… teaching writers craft.

In 2009, I discovered Larry Brooks and his teachings on story structure. It changed everything for me. It upended my entire writing life and what I knew and had done up to that point. No one was teaching structure the way he was and I knew I needed to help spread this message and change writers lives the way it changed mine.

My novel, SoundCheck, and the one I’m working on right now (and all the ones that come after) wouldn’t exist if it wasn’t for what I learned from Larry about craft. So sharing the message of craft was major for me. It kept me going, especially when things got tough and when I wanted to give up and quit.

And then that vision shifted again when I finally embraced the fact that I’m multi-passionate.

Instead of trying to run from it or trying to keep everything I was doing and wanted to do totally separate, I decided to create a personal brand and put everything under it. Because at the end of the day, I’m my brand, just like you are yours.

And now the vision for my company is bigger than it’s ever been. I’m no longer just on a mission to teach writers craft. I’m now on a mission to shake up the writing industry by changing the way writers think and challenging what they believe is possible.

That is the vision I’m living for right now.

But I never could’ve seen that in the beginning of my journey. I only came to this bigger vision by starting with a smaller vision and growing from there.

Journal Prompt: what’s the bigger vision for your writing life? What’s a smaller vision you can achieve right now that would be a stepping stone to that bigger vision?

2. A Why

Having a “why” is kindling that fuels the motivational fire. My why is freedom. It’s my core value in life and the biggest reason why I’m an entrepreneur.

Maintaining that freedom is a great motivator for me to show up every day and do the work. Especially considering the stakes of not showing up are so much higher now. 

You can’t really procrastinate when your living depends on you showing up.

Journal Prompt: what fuels your motivation? What’s your why?

3. A Purpose

The purpose of what I do as an author is to inspire, motivate, educate and empower multi-passionate authors to go all in on their dreams, and create a life and writing business where they never have to choose just one thing. That is the purpose that drives everything I do now in my own writing business. Every book I write, every blog post I publish, every workshop I teach. Everything.

By having a purpose for what I’m doing, it makes it all the more critical that I show up and do the work. I have people counting on me to do my writing and get it out there, so they can get what they need from it to heal, transform and create. 

Procrastination is no longer an option for me.

Journal Prompt: what’s the purpose behind your work as a writer?

4. Consistency

Creating consistency in my writing life is the only way I’ve been able to overcome my procrastination. Because the things you do consistently become a habit. And habits make it almost impossible not to do the work.

I have a habit of getting up in the morning and taking my dog for a walk. We may miss a few days a year due to weather or things like that, but overall, we walk every single morning. This is a habit that I created for us because I wanted to make sure he was getting enough exercise. We only started this habit a few years ago, but now I wouldn’t even think about not walking him because it’s just a natural part of my morning to do so.

Well, same goes with my writing. I just created a daily habit of doing my writing, first things first, before I do anything else or let the world in. And that daily consistency is what helped me to overcome the procrastination that used to run rampant in my life.

Journal Prompt: where are you not being consistent in your writing life? How can you step it up to start to create habits around doing the things that matter?

5. Master Craft

Whether you’re blogging, writing novels, self-help books, poetry or memoir, you have to master the craft of the writing you’re doing. There are principles and guidelines for each type of writing, and it’s your job as a writer and author to figure out the craft you need to master.

There’s no excuse for not knowing your craft. 

And when you know craft and you thoroughly inside and out understand the nuances of the type of writing you’re doing, procrastination becomes a thing of the past. Because when you know what you’re doing, it lessens your desire to procrastinate.

Journal Prompt: what pieces of craft do you still need clarity on? What do you need to practice more?

6. Planning and Development

Back when I used to be a major procrastinator, I not only didn’t know craft, but I didn’t know how to plan and develop my ideas into actual words on the page. So it was easier to avoid the page completely than it was to face a blinking cursor on a blank screen.

But once I started to learn craft and then created processes for planning and developing my ideas into stories and self-help books, I felt less need to procrastinate. I was actually excited to sit down and get to work on writing the draft of the story or nonfiction book.

Planning and development ahead of time gives you a roadmap for doing the writing. And that makes everything easier.

Journal Prompt: how can you incorporate planning and developing your ideas into your current writing life, in a way that feels good to you, but still allows for ease and productivity?

7. Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway

One of the biggest reasons most writers procrastinate is fear. Fear of success, fear of failure, fear of the unknown… insert whatever fear you have going on. And many writers allow this fear to stop them from doing the writing or from going all the way and finishing.

But the thing about success and about becoming a successful writer is you have to be able to feel the fear and then do the writing anyhow. 

If you allow the fear to overcome you, you’ll continue procrastinating forever and never accomplish what you want. So you have to find ways to push past the fear. To allow it to be there and still do your writing anyhow.

I’m scared all the time with regard to the writing I’m doing and putting out there. But I don’t let it stop me. I just put it out there and move on to the next thing.

Journal Prompt: where do you need to be ‘feeling the fear and doing it anyways’ in your writing life?

8. Make Health A Priority

For a long time I didn’t think about or take care of my health. Back when I was procrastinating the worst I ever had, I was also feeling the worst I ever had.

I was suffering with back, neck and shoulder pain from an accident I had as a teenager, which made sitting for long periods of time painful. And I had all kinds of stomach pain and other issues from undetected food sensitivities.

So of course I procrastinated. It’s very hard to push through the “I don’t feel like it” excuse when you actually feel like shit all the time.

When I started taking control of my health, changing my food habits, eating differently, moving my body more often and getting under the care of an upper cervical chiropractor is when things shifted for me health-wise. Which, in turn, shifted my procrastination habits.

Journal Prompt: how can you make taking care of your health a nonnegotiable? What do you need to be doing that you’re not right now?

9. Reprogramming the Subconscious Mind

I’ve been reprogramming my old thoughts, beliefs and ways of being for years now. And it’s paying off big time.

By reprogramming my old thoughts and beliefs, I’ve been able to install new beliefs and thoughts that support my goals, rather than continuing to live by the thoughts and beliefs that are blocking me from achieving them.

Your subconscious mind is a powerful creative force, and it’s always running in the background, creating by default. And it will continue to give you more of the same until you finally take charge and change it. 

Journal Prompt: how can you create a daily mindset practice that will support you in creating new beliefs and thoughts that are aligned with your goals? What can you include in your practice that would feel great for you?

And that is how I’ve been able to overcome procrastination to write and publish 10+ books and more than a thousand blog posts (and counting).

I believe that writers are messengers for the world. If you identify as a writer and you know with every ounce of your being that writing is in your blood, then you’re meant to be sharing your writing with the world. It’s a huge honor to be someone who writes words that transforms others.

But it’s also a huge responsibility to get over whatever excuses and bullshit I have going on, so that I can do the writing that I need to be doing day in and day out. Because it matters whether or not I show up every day.

And I get that now. Fully getting that and taking it to heart is the thing that has truly allowed me to step into the identity of the writer and author I dream of being. And procrastination isn’t a part of that identity.

You can do the same thing. It’s a choice, and the choice is yours.

Write with a purpose, live with intention,

 

 

#DailyThinkDifferent #DreamLifeOrBust

P.S. If you’re ready to kick procrastination to the curb and finally finish what you started, the doors to my upcoming workshop, FINISH Your Damn Novel: 30 days of kick-ass motivation, inspiration and getting-writing-done for writers who have started a first draft or the revision of a novel and want to FINISH, are opening tomorrow. Get on my email list here so you’re the first to get in.

Don’t Compromise Your Dreams Just Because You Don’t Know the “How”

If someone asked you, “what’s your BIG writing dream?” what would you say to them?

Would you tell them about your actual BIG writing dream? Or would you dim it down with some compromised version, because you have no idea how you’d ever make that happen and you don’t want the person who asked you to think you’re out of your mind or just really delusional for thinking you’d ever have a shot at a dream like that?

I used to answer that question by saying I want to make a living off my fiction. But that wasn’t quite it.

Yes, that’s a part of it. But that’s a compromised version of what I actually want. I never wanted to share my BIG dreams with anyone, out of fear that if I didn’t make it happen, I’d be judged or would have to hear “I told you so.”

So I kept the BIG dreams a secret and didn’t tell anyone. I didn’t talk about it, not even with the people closest to me. I just thought about it over and over again in my head.

And when I’d see other people achieving my BIG dream, I’d get triggered by their success and feel resentful and like it should be me. Instead of seeing it for what it really was: evidence that my BIG dreams are possible. 

Because if it can happen for one person, it can happen for more than one (remember the story about the 4-minute mile?).

I didn’t used to have a lot of faith in my BIG dreams actually coming true. I used to think they were pipe dreams or things that other people can achieve, but not me.

So I only allowed myself to go after dreams I knew I could achieve or didn’t have resistance to achieving. Mediocre dreams that were a small fraction of the bigger dreams I had living inside me.

Writing and publishing a novel. That was always a dream I had from when I was 13 years old. And while that was a pretty significant dream and achievement, I never had resistance to it. I always knew at some point it would come true and I would have a novel out in the world. 

I believed it, from day one.

I may have had a lot of struggle and resistance to doing the work required to achieve the dream, sure. But I never doubted that I’d make it happen. I always knew one day there would be a novel in the world that was written by me.

But my BIG dreams… the ones I only thought about in my head or whispered out loud to myself when no one was around…those I didn’t even allow myself to want or spend too much time fantasizing about.

Because I not only had a ton of resistance to believing those dreams were possible for me, but I also had no clue how I’d make it happen. And so by not allowing myself to want what I really wanted, I could play it safe. 

If no one knows about your BIG dreams, then there’s no pressure to actually make it happen. You’re let of the hook. You no longer have to worry about whether you’ll achieve your BIG dream… because even if you don’t, no one will know.

The problem with that way of thinking is that it caused me to play small, for such a long time. I’d sit on the sidelines, watching all these other writers achieving my BIG dreams and wishing it was me.

But I wasn’t doing the work. I wasn’t even allowing myself to fully want the BIG dream, even though deep down they were always there.

The BIG dreams have been there since I first started writing stories at age 11. My stories and story ideas have always come to me like little scenes in my mind; like bits and pieces of a movie playing in my head.

And that’s what solidified my BIG dreams.

But I never admitted it to anyone. I never said it out loud other than to myself. Because I didn’t believe it was possible for me. And I didn’t want to be seen as a failure in other peoples’ eyes in case I didn’t actually achieve it.

So I played small. Doing the bare minimum. Giving myself permission to procrastinate and make excuses and not write consistently.

Until a year ago when I realized something major… the only competition in life is with YOURSELF… and FUCK what anyone else thinks. 

Most people are sitting on the sidelines in life, afraid to get on the field and play the game, because of the reasons I just mentioned (and a whole lot of other ones). And do you know who those people are who say things like, “I told you so” and “see, I knew you couldn’t do it” or who would judge you or make fun of you for not achieving something?

They’re people who never allowed themselves to want their BIG dreams. They’re people who have shoved their BIG dreams so far down they’re buried for all of time. 

And they’re dead inside.

They just go through the motions, trying to make peace with the mediocre existence they’ve settled for. But they’re miserable.

Because they have these BIG dreams inside that they’re not allowing themselves to want, to go after and especially achieve. And they hate themselves for it.

They hate themselves for caring what other people think, for feeling trapped in a life that doesn’t fulfill them, for not taking action on what they want the most.

And yet they still don’t do anything about it.

Yes, thankfully some of these people wake the fuck up at some point in their lives and finally decide to go for it. That’s when you see people like Susan Boyle or the 90-year-old first-time novelist bursting onto the scene later in life.

They finally made their dreams bigger than their bullshit, as my mentor would say.

A year ago, I gave up my bullshit. I decided that I was no longer going to sit on the sidelines, watching other authors achieving my BIG dreams. I was going to get in the game and achieve with them too. And that’s what I’ve been doing ever since.

So, what are my BIG dreams?

> To be a New York Times Bestselling Author of both fiction and nonfiction.

> To have my novels and screenplays turned into big-screen Hollywood movies, with famous actors and actresses playing my characters, and I get to make cameos.

> To write and publish hundreds of books—both fiction and nonfiction—everything from novels to memoir to self-help. 

I’m no longer hiding from these dreams. I’m actively pursuing them. I’m writing about them every single day in my journal like they’ve already come true. I’m visualizing what my life would be like if these dreams were already true. I’m taking aligned act-as-if actions.

And I’m finally allowing myself to believe that’s possible for me. 

Now, I’m creating this belief. It’s not something that was already there. I’m intentionally putting it there by reprogramming my mindset and removing any negative thoughts, beliefs or barriers that could get in the way.

But as I’ve seen happen with so many other beliefs I wanted to have that I programmed into myself… once you do enough mindset work and take enough aligned act-as-if actions, the belief will be there.

And once the belief is there, the dream showing up in your physical reality is not far behind. 

So, what are your BIG writing dreams? Share in the comments if you dare…

Write with a purpose, live with intention,

 

 

#DailyThinkDifferent #DreamLifeOrBust 

P.S. Doors to my upcoming workshop: FINISH Your Damn Novel—30 days of kick-ass motivation, inspiration and getting-writing-done for writers who have started a first draft or the revision of a novel and want to FINISH, open on Friday March 24!! If you want IN on this workshop, get on my email list here so you’re the first to know when the doors open (you’ll also receive a free copy of my eBook, The Bestselling Author Mindset Formula). 

To Celebrate My 9-Year Blogiversary: My First Blog Post Ever

Today is my 9-year blogiversary–I started my blog on March 22, 2008. And as a way of celebrating this important day, I thought it would be fun to look back at my very first blog post, to see how much I’ve grown since them (and to be honest, have some laughs, ha!).

So here it is, in black-and-white… my very first blog post ever:

March 22, 2008

You’re Invited

I am a lover of words, a creator of pasttimes, a designer of personalities… In short? I’m a writer. I write it all–from marketing pieces to freelance articles to blog posts. And my true love? Fiction. Short stories, novels, screenplays… But like many other creative writers, I’m a procrastinator. I have big dreams of publishing my first novel and writing fiction for a living, but I never force myself to sit down and write. I have so many story ideas in my head and written down in my idea notebook that I could spend the rest of my life writing novels. For some reason, thou, as a creative person, I have a difficult time focusing and sitting down and just putting the words on paper. I have every excuse in the world for why I don’t want to write or why I don’t have time to write—Sex and the City is on right now, I don’t have any good ideas, I’d rather go out with my friends, I just have to clean my house first, it’s late and I’m tired—the list goes on.

But I’m turning 25 this year (in September), and so I’ve decided that it’s time for me to sit down and get to work. If I want to be writing for a living by the time I’m 30, I’ve only got 5 years to go.

It’s time for me to challenge myself. It’s time for me to start getting serious about writing.

And I invite you to join me. Challenge yourself to take on whatever writing project you’ve been putting off; dust off that computer and start writing!

Lets help motivate each other to get working on our novel or screenplay or poem or short story or stage play.

What I have to offer you is inspiration, advice I’ve been given and things I’ve learned thru conducting research, attending workshops, from reading books, taking creative writing classes, and a few other things I’ve taught myself along the way.

I’ll also give a lot of thought to writing and why talented writers with great ideas still can’t just sit down and write.

So what motivates you to sit down and write? Or if you find yourself avoiding sitting down and writing, why do you think you do it?

And there you have it. (You can see the original post here.)

Seeing that post was really eye-opening for me, and showed me just how far I’ve come as a writer. It’s cool to see that my voice was already coming out in the post (ever so slightly).

I wanted to share this flashback not only to celebrate my blogiversary, but also to show you what’s possible when you start something and then stay consistent over the long-haul. I’ve now written and published more than 1,000 blog posts and I’m still at it.

I started off as the biggest procrastinating writer in the world and now I’m one of the most productive writers I know. 

If I can make a transformation like that, ANYONE can. And tomorrow I’m going to tell you more about the transformation I made and how I made it. Stay tuned…

Write with a purpose, live with intention,

#DailyThinkDifferent #DreamLifeOrBust 

P.S. Are you ready to Finish Your Damn Novel? Join me and a motivated group of writers for 30 days of motivation, accountability, productivity, support and community to help you finally FINISH your damn novel. We start April 1. More details coming soon… get on my email list here to be the first to know when the doors to this workshop open. (You’ll also get my free workbook + training on how to turn your story idea from ‘eh’ to ‘awesome!’) 

The Answers Are Always Inside… You Just Have to Listen For Them and Be Brave Enough to Act

Back in 2008 I learned about the Law of Attraction for the first time—a universal principle and law of physics (much like gravity) which says you will attract to your life whatever you focus on, think about, believe, feel and act on. Meaning your life as you currently see it is made up of all the things you have previously focused on, thought about, believed, felt and acted on.

I took the law of attraction to heart when I learned about it, and decided that I would learn how to use it to create the life of my dreams. Because if I can have anything and create anything and be anything, so long as I focus on it, think about it, believe it’s possible, feel it as already being true and then taking aligned action… then why not have my dream life?

In late 2008, I was working with a writing coach who was helping hold me accountable to getting the first draft of my first novel written. And around that time I was making my decision for whether I would self-publish or go the traditional route.

And I had an idea one night… what if I wrote about what I wanted to see in my life as if it was already true? 

So I grabbed this blue journal I’d been saving for something special, and started writing about my dream life, as if it was already the life I was living. I’d write about my day and how it went. I’d write about my ideal day. I’d write about things, like being on movie sets and having my novel turned into a movie. I’d write that I had a publishing deal and my book was about to come out.

And then one day not long after I started this daily journaling practice, I got a call from my writing coach—her clients who had just started their own small press publishing company heard about my novel and wanted to offer me a publishing deal if I was willing to make changes that fit the message of their company (my first novel was a romance and this publishing house was focusing on love and relationship books). Now the deal didn’t come with any money up front, but it would’ve covered the costs of publishing the actual book and getting it out there.

I hit the panic button!!

The stuff I was writing about in my special blue journal was coming true!! No, it didn’t look quite like what I was expecting, but that’s because I wasn’t being specific enough (something I learned years later was a key to manifestation). But it had shown up. And so fast I couldn’t handle it.

I had somehow intuitively tapped into my power as a writer and creator, by deciding to write about my dream life as if it was already my real life. 

And it fucking scared me. So much that I quit. I stopped doing this journaling practice. My special blue journal sat there on my coffee table for months, collecting dust, until I eventually threw it out.

Then in 2016, this journaling practice came back to me full-force through a mentor of mine who had used that exact practice to build a multi-million dollar empire where she gets to do what she loves all day every day and get paid for it.

This isn’t a first occurrence, either.

So many times in my life and in my writing business I’ve second-guessed what I was doing or I’ve told myself that I didn’t know enough yet and needed to learn more. And then I’d spend months wasting time and money on coaches and programs that I really didn’t need and that didn’t really help me, because I didn’t need them.

Don’t get me wrong—I’ve made some seriously awesome investments in myself and in my business, in coaches, mentors, workshops and programs that were amazing and that helped me get where I am today. 

But then I’ve also invested in coaches, mentors, workshops and programs that I purchased out of fear, out of lack thinking and out of believing that I wasn’t enough. And it was those investments that ended up being a total waste of my time and money. (Not at all the coach or mentor’s fault, totally my own for not trusting my intuition and believing in myself enough to know that I’ve got this.)

We’re born with this amazing inner guidance system that supports us and gives us hints and messages to point us in the direction we want to go (even when we’re not consciously aware of it). But we’re not taught how to use it or that we should trust it.

We’re told that following your heart is foolish and a waste. We’re told that intuition alone isn’t enough of a reason to do something or not do something, especially when it makes no logical sense whatsoever.

But if you just pay attention to what’s really going on in your inner world and listen for the messages it sends you and then actually act on the stuff that feels aligned for you, you can create the most amazing, incredible, beyond-logic results and life. 

I now run my entire business almost 100% on intuition. Yes, I have strategy and I know the principles of how to get the results I’m after. But as far as what to offer to my community and what to create or write always comes 100% as a Divine Download (that’s what I call intuitive ideas).

And over the last year of my life, I have learned how to trust in that guidance and in those Downloads. Anytime I act on those ideas, they always bring me closer to my goals. (Acting on Divine Downloads is now a core value in my business.)

And whenever I ignore them and try to do the logical thing or the thing that seems like the right choice on paper, that’s when things just don’t quite work.

It’s been a hard lesson for me to learn, to discover that I’ve been insanely intuitive my whole life, but there have just been large gaps of time where I told myself the answer was outside me and that I had to go find it. That I had to hire another coach or join another program or look for the answer somewhere other than inside myself.

But the truth is, the answers are already inside you. You just have to know how to access them and then you have to learn to trust them and act on them.

It’s a process. A life-long one. But it starts with acknowledging that you do already know what you need to do and you do already have what it takes. You’re just not acting on it.

You’re doubting and second-guessing. You’re questioning yourself, worried that you aren’t enough or don’t know enough.

But the answers are still there. 

They may not have flashing red lights that shout out, “this is the right answer!” because there isn’t ever really one right answer; things shift and change as you continue on your journey. But they will always be there, subtly nudging you and guiding you.

It’s your choice whether you want to listen and act or not.

Now sometimes the answer inside you is… you really don’t know enough and you really do need to learn more. This would be if you’re new to something, just starting out or have never gone all the way and finished anything before. Sometimes we do need outside help and support. And there’s nothing wrong with that.

The way to know whether you need that outside help or not is by asking yourself… am I doing this out of fear or lack thinking? Or am I doing it because I honestly know that there are things I still need help with or need to learn? 

If I had asked myself that question throughout my journey so far, I would’ve made a lot of different choices in my life and business.

Again, don’t get me wrong. I’m grateful for my journey. And I don’t believe in regrets.

But I do believe in lessons and always looking for the lesson in the things that I could’ve done different from the beginning. Trusting myself and trusting my intuition (and trusting the Universe) more is absolutely one of the things.

So as I continue to reflect on the lessons I’ve learned over the last 9+ years of blogging and running a business and working full-time for myself (for 5 years), I hope you’ll take away little blips of inspiration for creating your own dream life.

Because that’s what I’ve been doing and what I’m continuing to do. Thanks for being a part of my journey.

Write with a purpose, live with intention,

 

 

#DailyThinkDifferent #DreamLifeOrBust

P.S. Are you ready to become a FINISHER?? Not just a writer who starts a project or goes halfway, but a writer who actually FINISHES what you start? Then stay tuned… I have something awesome coming later this week. 

And if you want to be the first to know about what that awesome thing is, get on my email list here (you’ll also get a free copy of my eBook—The Bestselling Author Mindset Formula: How To Think Your Way to #1). 

9 Things I’d Tell Myself in 2012

On March 20, 2012–exactly five years ago today–I walked away from my $70,000-a-year day job to take my writing and story coaching business full time. I’ve always been entrepreneurial; I had lemonade stands, provided services like tutoring and chores, and even had a handmade crafts business when I was a kid.

But this was the first time I was fully depending on myself to make money to pay bills and live. 

It has been a long, strange journey for these five years (and the five years prior when I was doing what I do now as a side hustle). I’ve learned a ton. I’ve grown a ton. I’ve created a ton.

And if I had the chance to have a conversation with my 2012-self, back when I was first starting my full-time entrepreneur journey, here’s what I would say:

1. Work On Your Mindset Every. Single. Day. Period. 

Mindset is the #1 thing that has absolutely totally 100% changed EVERYTHING for me. I know I wouldn’t be where I am today if I hadn’t taken control of my mindset for good in 2015.

I had so many limiting beliefs and negative ways of thinking going on in my life, mostly subconsciously. Starting a daily mindset practice and keeping it up over the long-haul has allowed me to shift from being a procrastinating writer to being the author of 10+ books with a growing readership and a thriving business doing work I love. 

Your practice doesn’t have to be fancy or take too long, it just has to help you set your focus for the day (and for your life) so you can set you up for success and positive ways of thinking and being. Some possible things to incorporate into your practice:

Takeaway Tip: create a daily mindset practice that incorporates things that make you feel really good.

2. Do What Matters, Daily 

For such a long time I put off what really mattered to me, thinking that everything else around me was more important. I was raised to keep the house clean and take care of laundry and dishes and all that stuff, and so I had to train myself to stop seeing that stuff as important and to put it off so that I could put what really matters first–writing, creating, teaching, growing.

Don’t get me wrong, that stuff still gets done. Eventually.

But I no longer put any household chores ahead of my writing or anything else that actually matters to me. 

I know my priorities and do them daily. Before I let the world in.

Takeaway Tip: figure out what matters most to you and what actually moves the needle in your writing life and commit to doing those things daily.

3. Build Habits and Discipline Around Doing What Matters

The only way to make sure you actually do what matters every day is to build habits around them and be disciplined enough to stick with it. The truth is so many writers have really bad habits and very little discipline. And this the reason why procrastination and self-doubt are running rampant in the writing world.

When you create habits around doing what matters, it actually becomes a hell of a lot easier. 

It’s not having a habit of doing your writing every day that makes you feel doubtful and uncreative and stuck. Because when you only do something once in a while, it’s harder to get into the flow.

But when you have a habit of doing it daily, then it’s just flow, baby, flow.

Takeaway Tip: figure out what matters most to you and what actually moves the need in your writing life and then build habits around doing these things every single day.

4. Put First Things First, Always

Along with doing what matters is making sure to do these things first, BEFORE you do anything else, every day. Putting first things first ensures you’ll always get what matters done, even if other stuff (like dishes and laundry) doesn’t.

If I had been doing what I’m doing now back then, putting first things first and doing what matters every day, I’d be even further along than I currently am.

Takeaway Tip: put what matters to you (see takeaway tip #2 and #3) first and get it done first, before you let the world in or do anything else.

5. Take Care of Your Body and Yourself

This is something that I’m just now taking to heart… but I wish I had taken it to heart five years ago when I was taking my writing and coaching business full time. As an authorpreneur, your energy matters. Because it affects everything else.

If you’re not eating right and making daily fitness a priority, you won’t have the energy to do all of the things you need to do and you’ll let yourself off the hook a lot more often when you’re tired or don’t feel like doing your work. And your creative juices will be junky because you’re feeding junk to your body and mind. 

But by taking care of yourself, you’ll be able to get up every day feeling energized and motivated and you’ll actually be productive all day.

For a long time I felt exhausted all day long and would have to nap to make it through the day. Now I’m energized and feeling good in my body, which is something I haven’t felt in a while.

Takeaway Tip: pay attention to the food you eat and how often you move your body; it matters.

6. Put (and Keep) Your Focus On Where You Want to Go

When you work for yourself, it’s so easy to get distracted by ‘shiny object syndrome’ and to keep thinking you need another program or another course or another coach. But really, you just need to stay focused on where you want to go and keep doing what matters every day, first things first.

Yes, coaches and programs and courses are very useful for when you’re starting out and still have things to learn. But after enough coaches, programs and courses, you know enough and you just have to trust that now you have to actually implement and take action and use what you’ve learned.

Which is why you have to stay focused on where you want to go. Otherwise you’ll get pulled from your path every time a new course, workshop or coach creates something that sounds interesting to you.

Stay focused. Get help when you really need it. But mostly just do what matters every day, first things first, consistently. 

Takeaway Tip: focus your mind DAILY on where you want to go in your writing life.

7. Make Friends with Uncertainty

A big part of why most people who want to be full-time writers never do starts with a U… uncertainty. Because the life of being a full-time authorpreneur comes with a side of uncertainty.

Sure, you can plan and make projections and estimations, but everything is still a best guess.

And that’s why most writers won’t make the leap. Because not always knowing where your next dollar will come from is scary.

But it can also be freeing and it can open you up to unlimited possibilities. When you don’t know what’s going to happen, anything is possible. 

And possibilities are the reason to become a full-time authorpreneur to begin with.

So make friends with uncertainty. Learn how to be OK with it. Learn to ride the wave of the beautiful, uncertain life of the authorpreneur.

And a big part of making friends with uncertainty comes from having a specific vision you’re focused on and a mindset practice that you do daily. When you’re mind is in the game, the uncertainty is easier to deal with.

Takeaway Tip: keep doing your daily mindset practice and keep taking action, it’s the only way to learn how to be OK with uncertainty.

8. Trust Your Intuition

So much of entrepreneurship is strategy and execution, but the part that really matters is your intuition. It’s your gut feel that will get you where you want to go in your writing life.

Yes, have strategy and guidelines, but use your intuition as a compass for how to execute. 

Everything that I create in my writing business, from my books to my workshops to my digital products, come as intuitive downloads that drop into my mind like I’m being struck my lightening. I’ll just be sitting there and then the next thing I know…BOOM! An idea hits me for a workshop to create or a book I need to write.

And one thing I’ve committed to as a value in my business is always acting on Divine Downloads (that’s what I call the intuitive ideas that I get). 

So whenever a download comes to me, I write it down. Sometimes I act on it right away. Other times it’s a piece of something that I know needs more marination time, so I’ll let it sit for a bit and see what else comes through.

Intuitive feel and guidance are a huge part of the creative process and of being successful as an authorpreneur.

That’s something I wish I had learned sooner in my journey. And especially I wish I’d learned earlier how to tap into my inner guidance so that I could pull out all these ideas whenever I need them.

Now that I’m tuned in (thanks to my daily mindset practice), I never worry about not knowing what to write or create, because I not only have backlogs of ideas and new ideas coming to me daily, but I know how to tap into my inner guidance to pull out an idea at the drop of a hat. 

That is something I am truly grateful to have finally learned.

Takeaway Tip: spend a few minutes a day tuning into your inner world; get acquainted with it; and trust that intuitive voice that’s trying to guide you on your journey.

9. Never, Ever Under Any Circumstances Look Around and Say “This Isn’t Working”

I’ve been in the online writing world for more than a decade and I’ve been coaching writers for more than half of that time. I’ve seen it all. And I see it all. Every day.

I see the writers who are all talk and no action. I see the writers who are actually showing up and doing the work. I see the writers who are complaining that things aren’t working and making every excuse in the world for why they don’t have the results they want yet.

I’ve seen it all and I see it all.

I’ve been there. Many, many times over the years. I’ve looked around me and said, “it’s not working.” And in my physical reality at the time, it wasn’t working.

But it also WAS working. I just wasn’t allowing myself to see that part because I was too busy focusing on the stuff that wasn’t working.

And if there’s any piece of advice I’d give my 2012-self, it would be to never look around and say “it’s not working.” For a few reasons:

  • It is what you say it is–your mind decides what is and how it will perceive and interpret things, and you get to choose your beliefs and thoughts. So why would you choose to make declarations and have thoughts that say “it’s not working?” Your life and your reality will always be a product of what you say and think and believe. Your thoughts and beliefs are the cause and your physical reality is the effect.
  • What you focus on expands–we talked about focus once already, but focus matters because it expands. So if you focus on “it’s not working,” guess what’s going to expand for you? That it’s not working! And then all you’ll be able to see are the ways it’s not working. So you must focus on what IS working by collecting evidence of all the ways and signs that say it IS working.
  • What you accept as true will be–if you’ve got beliefs that say you’re not good enough, worthy enough, that you can’t do this, that it works for other people but it won’t work for you… this is what will show up in your reality. Because once your mind accepts something as true, it will attract to your life things that match those accepted beliefs and ways of thinking. Change what you accept as true for you and change your whole life.

Takeaway Tip: never say “it’s not working”… instead, look for evidence that says it is working, keep track of the evidence in your journal so you can always refer back to it whenever you start to feel the “it’s not working” voices creeping in.

As you can probably see from the advice I’d give my 2012-self, a lot of what makes a difference in creating success relates to MINDSET. Amazing, isn’t it?

So today, on my five-year Quitiversary, I say to you the things I wish I could say to my 2012-self.

I hope you’ll read this post several times and really take to heart what I’ve said here. It could cut YEARS off your journey and help you achieve the success you want in your writing life a whole lot faster.

Share With Us

What’s the #1 thing you’re taking away from this list? Share in the comments. 

———–

Do you have a half-finished novel waiting to be written? Do you have a novel you’ve written but haven’t started revising or have started but never finished? Then get ready… because I’ve got something coming later this week that will help you step up and FINISH. More details soon… And if you want to make sure you’re the first to hear the announcement when I make it, be sure to get on my email list here

There’s No Backup Plan For Being the ‘Dream Life’ Version of You

I say all of the time that you can’t have a backup plan for your dreams. If you do, you’re automatically dooming yourself to whatever backup plan you’ve come up with, because by having a backup plan, you won’t push yourself to do what it takes to achieve Plan A.

Sure, you might tell yourself that you’re giving it a go… for a few years or a few months or whatever. And if it doesn’t work out, you’ll just fall back on your backup plan and then spend the rest of your life talking about and thinking about what might have been.

If only you hadn’t given up.

If only you had fully gone all in on your dream life.

If only you didn’t have a backup plan.

But here’s the thing when it comes to having your dream life… your dream life showing up (or not) is a byproduct of who you are as a person. It’s who you’re being in any moment that will determine what the future holds for you. 

So how can you have a backup plan on being who you are? 

That’s like saying there’s a replacement for you, in case you don’t fully show up in the world and do the work you’re being called to do.

Except there isn’t. There’s no backup version of you. Because there can never be another you.

You came to this world with unique skills, talents and gifts that need to be shared.

Which is why you must fully show up, every single day, as the person you want to be. Not as the person you’ve been up to this point or the person you think you should be, but the person you want to be RIGHT NOW.

The truth is, you can act your way into anything you desire. You can choose in any moment to BE the person who has the dream life you want for yourself. You can decide that you will be that person inside and out and then shift your beliefs, thoughts and physical reality to reflect that decision.

Want to know how I started selling more books and making more money in my writing business than ever before? You may want to grab a seat for this one, because what I’m about to reveal may just throw you for a loop.

Here are the main things I did that helped me start selling more books and making more money…

1. I allowed myself to want what I really want

For a long time I’d dream of making $50,000 a month in my business, a big chunk of which would come from my book sales. But because I had no clue how this could happen, I never allowed myself to want it. Until a year ago, when I met a mentor who pushed me to finally allow myself to want what I really want, even if I have no clue how I’ll get it.

So I started saying I wanted to make $50,000 a month in my business.

Allowing myself to want and to ask the Universe for what I really wanted got the ball rolling in that direction, and more money started coming in.

2. I started tracking my income and my book sales daily

Yes, daily. Even when at first I was only writing down 3-4 book sales a day. But I kept at it. I kept checking the numbers and tracking them every day. And the numbers have grown and keep on growing. Why?

Because what you focus on expands.

So if you want to grow your income and/or your book sales, you have to PAY ATTENTION to them!! You’ll never make the book sales you want to make by sticking your head in the sand because you don’t want to see that you’ve sold 0 books or only 2 books or whatever.

Every author has a 0 book sales day (usually many). Every author starts out with low sales and grows from there.

But the authors who keep track of their book sales with intention will see that number grow.

3. I got rid of all the clothes in my closet that the $50,000 a month version of me would never wear

When I looked at my closet, there was so much junk in there—stuff with holes, clothes I’d had since college that didn’t quite fit me anymore, etc., and so I went through my entire closet and asked myself, if I was already making $50,000 a month, would I wear this?

For anything where the answer was “no,” I put the item into a bag for donation. At the end of the clean out, I had 5 huge trash bags of clothes I was donating, and a closet that didn’t have a whole lot of stuff left in it.

But the stuff that was left made me feel like who I imagined I’d be if I was already making $50,000 a month. And stepping into being that person now, rather than waiting ’till I was already making $50,000 a month to be that person, allowed the money and book sales to flow.

4. I subscribed to StitchFix and got a delivery monthly

StitchFix is a clothing delivery site where you choose the styles you like and then a personal stylist picks 5 items a month for you to try at home. You try it on, keep what you like and send the rest back.

I signed up for this because the $50K a month version of me would wear higher quality name brand clothes.

At the time when I signed up for this I had no idea if I’d actually be able to afford it each month. But I just trusted that this was a major act as if moment for me to show the Universe who I wanted to be.

Not only did the money show up to pay for my Fix every month, but I also now have 12 new high-quality items in my closet that the $50,000 a month version of me would definitely wear.

5. I started writing and publishing more books

The ‘dream life’ version of me is an author who has hundreds of books out in the world. So if I was going to be that author now, I had to start writing and publishing more books.

Which is exactly what I did in 2016. I wrote 9 books and published 7 of them, and my book sales numbers and the money I’m making from my books has grown every month.

I haven’t yet made $50,000 a month, but ever since doing these 5 things, I’ve consistently made $5,000-7,000 a month (give or take a random month). Before that I was all over the map, money-wise.

Now I will add that doing the stuff that I did definitely requires a level of trust in the Universe and in yourself. But for me, I’ve found acting as if to be the most powerful way to manifest anything that you want or need.

If you can just figure out who you want to be—or who you would be if your dream life was already your real life—you can start acting your way into living that life right now, today. 

That’s what I do. Every single day. I ask myself CONSTANTLY what the ‘dream life’ version of me would look like, act like and be like on a daily basis. I have lists of the actions I’d be taking daily and I’m constantly comparing my current life and my current ways to being to the actions that are on that list.

When things aren’t aligned, meaning when I’m not acting the way the ‘dream life’ version of me would act, I adjust course where necessary until I am.

Sometimes that means creating new habits, sometimes it means sustaining old ones, sometimes it means changing the way I’m doing something (like eating or exercising), sometimes it means getting rid of or letting go of stuff that no longer aligns with the ‘dream life’ version of me.

It’s a constant process. Alignment is something you have to be mindful of every day. It’s something you need to be asking yourself about on a regular basis: Am I doing things that will get me where I want to go? Or am I sabotaging myself and getting in my way?

By committing to alignment and to being the ‘dream life’ version of you right now, you can act your way into any life and any success that you desire. You can become the smarter, richer, hotter, better version of yourself—the person you see yourself as (or want to see yourself as) in your head—right now.

But you have to decide, once and for all, that you will go all in on being that person. That you will keep yourself aimed at the ‘dream life’ version of you and that you won’t stop ’till you get there.

Because there’s no backup plan for being you.

Write with a purpose, live with intention,

 

 

#DailyThinkDifferent #DreamLifeOrBust

P.S. While there may not be a backup plan for being you, there is a backup plan for the first draft of your story. It’s called the Story Revision Kit: Process + Strategy for Revising Your Novel, and it will help you turn the first draft you’ve got into the first draft that you want.

It’s coming later this week!!

Want to be the first to know when it’s available? Be sure to get on my email list here (you’ll also get a free copy of my training + workbook: From ‘Eh’ to ‘Awesome’: 9 Questions to Turn Your Idea Into An Actual Story).

15 Journaling Questions for Fiction and Life

When I was in middle school, I started keeping a journal where I wrote about my life, pretty much daily, and kept record of the things that happened to me and my thoughts and feelings about all of it. I did this my entire life on and off, and still to this day I have all of my old journals from growing up. (I don’t know if I’ll ever read them again, but I love having them.)

Keeping a journal is something I do now too. I don’t always detail what’s happening in my life. Sometimes I do. Other times I’m freestyle journaling on questions about life or my dreams or beliefs or purpose or whatever bigger questions are on my mind that day.

And it turns out journaling is not only a great way to document your thoughts and feelings about life, but it’s also great for problem-solving and coming up with ideas.

I now use journaling for pretty much EVERYTHING—from thinking through life to planning out stories to documenting what’s going on to writing my reality to coming up with new products and workshops, and more.

So I thought I’d share 15 of my favorite journaling prompts for writing fictional stories and for life. My recommendation is to do freestyle writing on each of these questions, just to see what bubbles up. Write them by hand if at all possible.

For Fictional Stories

1. What is this story about?

I love this question because it cuts right to the core and doesn’t mess around.

2. Who is this person, really? 

When it comes to developing characters, the more real and three-dimensional you can make them, the better. Asking questions like this will help you do that.

3. What made this person who they are today?

Backstory is an important part of creating a strong character. This question is great for digging deep into that.

4. Why does this scene need to be in the story? 

Scene writing is the actual execution of a story on the page. A question like this will help you ensure your scenes are mission-driven and have a purpose that moves the story forward.

5. What happens in this story?

Another question that points to the plot of the story and figuring out what it is. A story must has something specific happening—an opportunity, a problem to resolve, etc.—otherwise it will become episodic.

For Generating Ideas 

I LOVE journaling for uncovering ideas that are already inside me, I just have to get the junk out of the way first. I recommend doing these prompts as either freestyle writing or as a list.

1. What should I call this book?

Book titles can be challenging to come up with because you need to get one that will tell the reader what to expect while leaving some intrigue. Write down as many ideas as you can think of, even if you think the idea sucks and you’d never in a million years call your book that. By writing every idea down, you’ll get the sucky or crap ideas out of the way so the good and great ones can come through.

2. What should my next book be about?

I love to brainstorm and I’m constantly writing down ideas for books, blog posts, guest posts, products, workshops, you name it. I don’t create everything that I write down, but by generating ideas on a regular basis, I’m able to tap into my creativity and uncover gems that I do create and put out into the world.

3. What do I want to create right now?

Whenever I’m in the mood to be creative but don’t know what I feel like creating, I’ll ask myself this question. Whatever pops out that feels like a HELL YES is what I choose. Sometimes that’s baking a dessert or making a craft or writing a short story or drawing or creating a new product or workshop… whatever I feel in the moment.

4. What book could I write right now?

This one is similar to number 2, I just like this wording and feel it brings out a totally different response in me. So I use this question all the time to brainstorm my next book idea. And I often get multiple ideas that I really like, so I’ll add them all to my running ‘write this’ list. It’s impossible to run out of ideas when you’re constantly generating them.

5. How can I make this better?

Whenever I ask this question it always takes the thing I’m asking it about to the next level, whether that’s a scene in my story, a product I’ve created, a workshop I’m teaching or a book I’m writing. Ask this question. Ask it often.

For Life 

And now the journaling prompts that relates to life. I love these because they force you to see the issues or areas of life that you’ve been ignoring or pushing away. Confronting at times? Sure. But worth it.

I recommend you freestyle write these as well.

1. What do I want?

You can’t get what you want in your life if you don’t know what you want. This question will get you clear on exactly what you want, so you can start going after it.

2. Why do I want it?

This question is super important! Because you can’t just want something just to want it. Well, OK, technically you can, but that doesn’t mean you’ll get it. You need to have a reason for why you want it. The “why” behind the things you want will be the driving force for you actually getting them.

3. What do I need to be doing in my life every day that I’m not doing right now?

I told you it was a little confronting, but it’s also a great way to recalibrate your life on a regular basis. I’m always asking myself this question and adjusting course where necessary.

Alignment is important when it comes to achieving your goals and the success you want in your writing life. If you’re not aligned—for example, if you want something, but you’re not taking the actions required to get it—then it won’t happen. Alignment is everything.

4. How can I take better care of myself right now?

I like this question because as a writer, your body and your mind are your tools for doing your work in the world. And it’s hard to do your writing consistently or at the level you want to do it at when you’re not taking care of yourself.

This will help you identify the places where you could be doing a better job.

5. What does my dream life look and feel like? 

One of my all-time favorite questions and one that I ask myself almost daily. Not just in my journaling but in my visualization practice too. Because the more I know about what my dream life looks and feels like, the easier it is for my to picture it and feel it as real.

Give one or more of these a try and if you get something really good out of it, I’d love to hear about it.

Write with a purpose, live with intention,

 

 

#DailyThinkDifferent #DreamLifeOrBust

P.S. Are you currently revising a story or getting ready to? I’ve got something awesome coming later this week that will give you a process and a strategy for getting your story revised and ready to send to an editor and Beta Readers. 

More details soon… Get on my email list so you’re the first to know when it goes live and you’ll also get my free training + workbook–From ‘Eh’ to ‘Awesome’: 9 Questions to Turn Your Idea Into an Actual Story. 

Life Will Get In the Way–Accept It and Keep Going Anyhow

So on Wednesday, the city where I live had a horrific wind storm. It was almost tornado-like. They were warning people to stay off the roads and there was stuff blowing around everywhere.

And, of course, we lost power. About 100,000+ people currently have no power, including myself. It’s been more than 2 days at this point, and it could be a couple more before we see power again at my apartment.

Worst of all, we lost all the food in our fridge, and we don’t have any internet (that’s the worst of all for me… I need my internet!).

Not to mention it’s winter, and without power… it’s also FREEZING. (And the craziest part of all is that my apartment also lost power last Wednesday thanks to another wind storm… but last week we were the only ones who lost it, so they had it back up within 12 hours. This time… not so much.)

Suffice to say, life got in the way yesterday. So even though I tried my best to get my usual first things first stuff done, it just didn’t happen. I did manage to get my journaling and mindset work done, and I took care of my health stuff.

But my blog didn’t get written in the morning. And even if it did, I didn’t have internet access to be able to post it and share it around on social. And I also didn’t do the other daily activities that I need internet for (I even had to reschedule a training with my group because livestreaming requires a strong internet connection and my LTE couldn’t handle the load).

And here’s the thing… this is gonna happen.

Life will get in the way. Life chaos will happen. Some days you’ll wake up and feel totally out of control and nothing will go right.

It happens.

But even still, there are no excuses. No reasons good enough to stop doing what matters every day.

So even if you have an off day where things just don’t work out or don’t go right, that doesn’t mean every day has to turn into that.

Get back to it. Immediately. As soon as you can.

Last night I wrote my post. It wasn’t as good as what I usually write, but that doesn’t matter. What matters is I did it. I got it done. I made it happen.

Success is built on the back of getting the things that matter done every single day.

And when you can’t get the things that matter done, you do the best you can with what you’ve got in the moment, and you get back to it as soon as you possibly can.

My brother’s house has power and internet, so me, my hubs and our poodle moved ourselves here for a couple days. Last night I forced myself to go to bed early so I could get up super early this morning and get back on track.

It’s not easy to be in someone else’s space and continue on with your usual routine. I’d still call this life getting in the way.

But I refuse to stop or be stopped. By anyone or anything.

And so on I continue.

Even though I’m not in my usual comfort zone. Even though my daily routine is a bit off thanks to not being at home. Even though I’ve had a seriously shitty week and just want to call it a wash and be lazy for the rest of the weekend.

But I push on.

Because I have a vision. I have goals. I have a mission. And I will get there. No matter what.

So I allow myself to have an off day, because that’s gonna happen sometimes. There’s no way around it.

BUT I don’t allow myself to use an off day as a reason to have an off week or an off month. I deal with life as it comes, do the best I can, and get back to my usual do what matters first things first routine as soon as I possibly can.

Because that’s what it takes.

Success is daily practice. And what really matters isn’t what you do on occasion or every now and then. What really matters is what you do every day.

If you don’t have the success you desire, I’d take a good hard look at your daily habits and morning routine. That’s the starting point to getting yourself aligned with where you want to go.

You must set yourself up for success every day.

And on the days when that doesn’t happen, don’t place blame, don’t make excuses, don’t give up. Just deal with what’s happening and get back to it the next day.

Because anything worth doing is worth doing daily.

#DailyThinkDifferent #DreamLifeOrBust

Share With Us

How do you get back into your daily routine when life gets in the way? Share in the comments. 

———–

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Just imagine… 10 days from today you could be holding your Kindle and seeing your eBook on the screen. You could be selling your eBook and starting to many an income from your writing. You could be getting your eBook into the hands of readers who are desperately waiting for someone like you to come along and write the book they need.

Here’s what Sarrah October Young, author of Get Off My Feed! How To Navigate Slippery Social Media Situations, had to say about her experience in the workshop:

“Writing an eBook has never been easier. Jennifer’s tried-and-true system helps you build your book from the initial idea straight through to publishing without missing any steps. If you are ready to finally write that book, Jennifer will give you the kick in the ass you need to get that shit done. I wrote my first eBook using her system, and I’m already working on my next one. It works.”

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The Push-Pull of Making Changes (And Why Most Never Do)

When you’re trying to make massive changes in your life, whether that be starting to exercise, eating better, doing first things first, or any other kind of change you want to make, there’s something that happens. You get into making the changes, you’re consistent for a few days, and then suddenly… life chaos. Or your car breaks down. Or you get sick. Or you get a hate email.

Or something else bad happens and you think to yourself—I guess I shouldn’t be making these changes. I guess the Universe just doesn’t want me to have the money, the body, the success, the [insert whatever change you’re trying to make].

And that couldn’t be further from the truth.

Its unfortunate, but when you’re making big changes, the Universe tests you. To see how bad you really want it. To see how far you’re willing to go. To see how committed you really are to your life being different.

Because most people aren’t. Most people will let tiny little obstacles get in the way and stop them.

Ever since I implemented a major diet change recently, my life has been hell, on and off. Some days are great—everything flows and feels totally aligned. And other days, it’s like I’m trudging through mud, with no end in sight.

And there’s a lot of back-and-forth that goes on. For a while.

Good stuff… not so good stuff… good stuff… not so good stuff… really good stuff… really not so good stuff… really good stuff… Over and over again it goes on like this.

And at every twist and turn you have a choice: to keep going, or to give into the chaos.

When my health took a hit after I implemented my diet change I could have quit. The pain I was going through was almost unbearable. I could have thrown in the towel and decided that I’d just have to eat like shit the rest of my life, because making a change is just too hard and too painful.

When I started (again) on my journey to being consistent, doing what matters and putting first things first, and everything around me started falling apart, I could have quit. I still could quit.

But I won’t.

No matter how hard it gets.

No matter how rough the chaos.

No matter how bad it all feels.

Because I know what’s on the other side when you keep going. I’ve been through up-levels in my life enough times now to know that this is just a phase. And when you make a major life change, chaos always ensues.

Why? Because your reality is shifting, and things that you’re asking for are trying to come to you… but getting those things requires other parts of your life and reality to shift as well.

Example… in August 2015 I started doing a daily mindset practice. It’s the first time in my life I committed to working on my mindset every single day (and I’ve been doing it ever since, minus a handful of days where I fell off). And the week after I’d been totally consistent with everything and was feeling like I’m making progress… I was flat broke and my car got re-poed.

Most people would take that as a sign to quit. As a sign that it’s just not gonna work out and that you’re not meant to have the things you really want.

But I pushed on.

Because even though it looked like my world was falling apart on the outside, I had this feeling deep inside me that everything was gonna be OK. I didn’t how and I didn’t know when, I just knew it was going to happen.

So I kept going. Kept doing my mindset practice.

Not even 24 hours later, I had another car. And within the next 30 days, I made $15,000+ dollars CASH. 

Now imagine if I hadn’t kept going. Imagine if I’d said, this isn’t working and gave up. Imagine if I’d let the chaos and the nonsense I was seeing in my reality stop me.

Where would I be if I’d done that?

Definitely not where I am right now, running a thriving business that grows every month and makes an incredible impact in the world.

So this week, when all the typical signs of a massive up-level have been showing up in my life again… hate emails, feeling like shit, arguing with people close to me, things I’m looking forward to getting canceled or rescheduled… I have to throw logic to the wind and continue on.

And let me just say… it’s NOT FUCKING EASY to do this!! 

This week, for example, I had an appointment to get a massage. Something I’ve been treating myself to once a month as part of taking better care of myself and my health. But on Sunday, I got an email… they had to cancel my appointment for Monday because my massage therapist was sick.

Fine. I call and reschedule for Wednesday morning. Show up to the place on Wednesday morning… they don’t have an appointment for me in the system. HUH???

So I reschedule AGAIN and the customer service manager gives me 30 minutes free on my rescheduled appointment as an apology for messing up so badly this week. And then I get back out to my car, and the car parked next to me has the numbers 777 in the license plate. (77 and 777 are my angel numbers that show up for me ALL the time to tell me that I’m in the right place, I’m doing the right things and I just need to keep going.)

It’s like a wink from the Universe. It’s like the Universe is saying, I know things don’t make a lot of sense right now, but keep trusting and keep taking action. 

So even though I’m extremely pissed off at this point and I’m fucking DONE with this week and just want to crawl into bed, pull the covers over my head and not come back out ’till next Monday, I keep going anyhow. I get home from trying to go to my appointment, and I write this post.

After I finish writing this, I will go to the gym, and burn off some of the anger. Because I know that even if my reality looks like a shit-show right now, something amazing is on the horizon.

And to get there, I just have to keep going. 

That is the push-pull of making changes in your life. Of taking things to a whole new level. Of bringing your dream life to reality.

And most people can’t handle it. Most people will hit one obstacle or challenge and they’ll quit and they’ll tell themselves it’s not worth it and they can’t do it. Believe me, I’ve thought about it. Many, many times.

Thought about what my life would be like if I hadn’t kept going… if I don’t keep going now. If I decide to call it quits and zone out with Netflix and junk food for the rest of my life.

The phrase, “just fucking quit” has been running through my mind for weeks now.

And yet I’m still moving forward. Still working on my food and fitness changes, still committed to doing what matters every day and doing it first things first.

At this point, nothing will stop me. No matter how bad it gets. Because I know it’s all temporary, and a brand new shiny, sparkly reality is on its way to me. 

But when you ask the Universe for something new, for something bigger than you’ve allowed yourself to ask for previously, your physical reality has to shake up. It has to. There’s no way around it.

Because the old can’t exist with the new. And the Universe is always rearranging itself based on your thoughts, beliefs, feelings and the things that you’re asking for. 

And if you can just stay focused on that fact, and keep moving forward, even though everything is falling apart around you and even though you think you should quit and even though you’re fighting with every ounce of your being to not quit… you will succeed.

There’s no way around it. It’s inevitable.

Because the ONLY WAY you won’t get what you want or where you want to go, is if you stop. 

You have a choice in every single moment, to just keep going. To let the life chaos be there and do the work anyhow. To let hell rain down upon you and to continue on.

That is the choice I’m making. It’s the choice I make every single day. And it’s always the choice I will make. Even when it’s hard. Even when it’s easy. Even when it feels fucking impossible. 

It’s the only way.

#DailyThinkDifferent #DreamLifeOrBust

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How do you keep pushing forward when life chaos happens? Share in the comments. 

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So often when people sign up for workshops they immediately find that life chaos gets in the way of them doing the work and finishing. I’ve been teaching workshops for 5+ years now and I see it every single time, without fail. Some people just stop doing the work and you never hear from them again. Others try to weasel their way out with excuses and BS.

But the ones who show up fully and do the work ALWAYS achieve the results they set out to. 

Which is why I’ve designed my upcoming workshop, Write and Publish Your Nonfiction eBook in 10 Days, as a step-by-step process, so that you don’t get overwhelmed and even if life chaos does happen (‘cause let’s face it—it’s going to), you can still make the time to complete each day’s activities.

This is a fast-paced, no-excuses, take-fucking-action workshop that will help you go from idea in your head to published eBook on Amazon. 

If you’re ready for the ride of your writing life… then let’s do this!!

>> Details and sign up here

How To Use Fiction to Create Anything You Want In Your Life

When I was a kid, I had a dress up box. It was made from cardboard and was filled with things that transported me to fictional realities, where I got to be anything I wanted: a singer, a dancer, an actor, a teacher, an artist.

I loved playing pretend. The thing I played most often was school. I had a chalk board and I used to make my brother, sister, cousins and friends sit and listen to me teach them stuff. (It’s no wonder I do the work I do today.)

I believed in Santa until I was 11. I remember being quite shocked when I found out he wasn’t real. Maybe I was a little naive, but I liked believing in magic and in magical beings.

I still believe in magic, even today. Just a different kind.

Because I’ve seen the power of the human mind and what it can create with enough belief. That’s magic of the greatest kind.

And the power to create whatever you want is available to you right now, in this very moment. You just have to get fictional with it.

You have to pretend whatever you want is already yours and then you have to act from that place, pretending your way into seeing it show up in your real life.

As a writer and creator, you’re good at making up stories and creating fictional worlds. So why not use that same creative power to CREATE YOUR LIFE?

There’s a journaling exercise I do every couple weeks where I ask myself: If I already had the success, the money, the body, the [insert whatever you want], I would… 

And then from there I complete the sentence over and over again, with the areas of my life that I’m currently focusing on (or you could do every area—up to you), until I have a whole list.

For example… if I already had the success I want, I would:

  • Be making a minimum of six figures a year from my books
  • Drive a blue Jeep Wrangler
  • Be disciplined around doing what matters every day
  • Be disciplined around food and fitness
  • Be a Hollywood screenwriter turning my novels into movies with big-name actors and actresses playing my characters and I get to make a cameo

So now that I have that list of what my life would look like and be like if I already had the success I want, I know exactly what I need to focus on and pretend about.

Because when you act as if something is already true—even if it’s not true at first—it will eventually become true. (This works for both things you want and things you don’t want.) 

Here are the actions—both practical, physical actions and acting “as if” actions—that I’d focus on:

  • Check my book sales numbers and income every single day (what you focus on expands)
  • Write and publish more books—nonfiction and fiction
  • Begin referring to my car as my Jeep (even though it’s not right now)
  • Go Jeep shopping 1-2 times a month and get into the feeling of already having it
  • Add all this stuff into my daily visualization
  • Create habits and discipline around the 7 activities (4 bare minimum) I’ve identified as daily must-dos
  • Create habits and discipline around making better food and fitness choices, and keeping the outcome/end results in mind when tempted to do otherwise
  • Write a screenplay from one of my novels

If I began doing all of those things, I would start seeing more of the success I want showing up.

Why? Because I’ve identified who I’d be and what I’d be doing if I already had the success, so if I step into doing those things and being that person NOW, then what I’m asking for has to show up.

So while it may feel like fiction at first and while you may have to do some pretending, you can get yourself where you want to go a lot faster if you step into that identity of the already-successful version of yourself NOW. 

That’s how I use fiction every single day to create the real life that I want to have. And that’s how you can too.

Share With Us

What’s one thing you’d be doing today if you already had the success you desire? 

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If the successful version of yourself includes being the author of nonfiction books, be sure to check out my upcoming workshop: Write and Publish Your Nonfiction eBook in 10 Days. This workshop will challenge you to get out of your head and get into action. There’s no time to doubt yourself, there’s only time to take action and keep moving forward.

And if you do that every day for 10 full days, you will walk way with a published eBook on Amazon.

>> Details and sign up here