Not everyone agrees with this statement, but I truly believe we can have anything that we want, no matter what it is.
But in order to get what you want, there’s something you have to do first. And it’s a biggie.
Without doing this one thing, you may not get exactly what you want. And yeah, sure, you can always accept a consolation prize. Something that’s close to what you want and makes you feel pretty good too.
Except it’s not what you really want, and you deserve to have everything that you want–especially in your writing life.
The problem most writers–and people in general–have is they’re willing to settle, to accept something mediocre in place of what they really want.
I used to be like that too.
How To Not Get What You Want
When I was in college I had a desktop computer that died after a year of buying it, and so I had to buy a new one. I knew exactly what I wanted. I wanted a Sony Vaio laptop (those were really popular when I was in college).
I knew it was a top-of-the-line computer and that it would last a hell of a lot longer than the refurbished desktop I’d been using. Plus, I wanted a laptop so that I could do my school work and writing wherever I felt like (and not be chained to the desk in my dorm room).
Except when I got to Best Buy to purchase my new laptop… they were out of stock on the Sony Vaio laptops. They had none left in the store.
I was extremely disappointed. But then the sales guy told me that I could buy a Toshiba laptop instead which would be just as good and would cost about half the price of the Sony.
And because I wanted instant gratification–because I wanted to walk out of the store with a laptop that day–I settled. I let him talk me into buying the Toshiba.
Got back to my dorm room, loved the new laptop for a couple weeks… and then it started overheating and shutting down on me without warning, and I kept losing stuff. I spent 3 hours researching and writing an article for the school paper and right before I hit “save” the fucking laptop shut down on me and I lost the whole thing (the laptop didn’t have Word, only Microsoft Works, which didn’t have a “document recovery” option at the time).
I was devastated.
Not to mention I took the Toshiba in to the Best Buy Geek Squad at least 5 times and no one could ever fix what was wrong with it. And when I called Toshiba customer service directly, the guy I spoke with gave me bad instructions and I ended up losing my entire music library of 3,000+ songs. (I was even more devastated about that, because music is my air.)
I was really pissed off. Mostly at myself.
Because I settled. I went to the store knowing what I wanted, and I let someone talk me into getting something else because what I wanted wasn’t available. Because I would’ve had to wait a little bit longer to have it.
The funny thing is, people do this to themselves ALL the time. You wanted to buy the blue one, but they only had red so you got red. Rather than just waiting for blue to be available or going online and trying to find the blue one, you just settle and buy the red.
And the truth is, when you’re settling in one area of your life, you’re likely settling in several.
So, where are you settling when it comes to your writing dream? Where are you telling yourself that you can’t truly have what you want, and instead accepting a mediocre version of it?
There’s only one way to get exactly what you want, every single time you want something. Whether that’s in your writing life, buying a computer or anything else you want: You have to close off all other options.
What does that mean?
It means acting like there is no other option available. You’ll get what you want or die trying.
If I went into Best Buy back in college and had closed off all other options beforehand, I would’ve walked out of the store without a laptop that day… but I’d have walked back in a few weeks later when they had more and then walked out with a Sony Vaio in my hands. No settling.
Let’s say you want to be a bestselling author. It’s a dream you’ve had your whole life. You’ve imagined it more times than you can count.
But since you have no idea how to make it happen, you settle. You put your book out into the world and then you let it sit. You make a few sales, but the book doesn’t become a bestseller.
And you’re OK with that–because you’ve been told that you can’t always get what you want.
Except none of the BS is true.
You CAN have what you want. You can have it ALL.
But the only way is to close off all other options.
If being a bestselling author was your only option… you’d keep at it ’til it happened. You’d work your ass off bringing that dream to life. You’d accept nothing less than bestseller status. You’d market and sell your book 24/7 if that’s what it took.
Problem is, too often we want something, but we’re not fully committed to having it, and so when we’re offered a consolation-prize version of what we want, we settle. We call it good enough and move on.
And that’s why you don’t always get what you want.
Because getting what you want means NOT settling. It means holding off, waiting, being patient. It means knowing that it might take a year or a few years or a lifetime to make it happen, and being OK with that.
When you close off all other options, that means you’re not open to getting anything but what you want. And by being that committed to what you want AND doing the work to make it happen, there’s no way in hell you won’t get it at some point. It’s inevitable.
That’s what it really takes to get what you want. To get exactly what you want. Every single time. No exceptions.
Share With Us
What do you want for your writing life? And how are you going to close off all other options so that getting what you want becomes inevitable?