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This Is Why Nothing Ever Changes

Have you ever had a bad experience at a restaurant? The food was cold, the waiter was rude and they tried to charge you for something you ordered but didn’t actually get. You walked out that day and said you’d never ever go there again.
 
But then a few weeks later, your friend suggests you go to that restuarant for lunch. You don’t want to go because of your previous experience, so you tell your friend all about it and share just how bad it was. Your friend says, “everyone has a bad day” and insists on going there anyhow.
 
So you go, grumbling along as you do, pointing out all the stuff they’re doing wrong. And your experience the second time around doesn’t go much better than the first time–the waiter spills something on you, they ran out of the menu item you wanted and the music was too loud.
 
But what if the reason it was a similar experience is because you assumed that it would be and you expected it to be?
 
What if you projected your first experience on your second, so that, again, you would walk out disappointed? Because you would also walk out feeling “right” and being able to say, “I told you so.”
 
But what if your assumptions and expectation that it would be bad again is what actually made it bad again?
 
‘Cause that’s the thing about the human mind… once it has an experience, it continues to pull up that experience and reference it anytime a similar experience happens or you’re in a similar–or the same–place or situation. And so it’s actually your assumptions and expectations based on previous experiences that keep you repeating that same experience again.
 
Which then leads you to believe that it just “is what it is.”
 
So if you’re not achieving the goals you have or you’re still not writing or finishing the novel (or other creative project) that you started–assumption and expectation is probably what’s keeping you stuck. Because if you assume you won’t finish or you expect that you’ll keep on repeating the same behavior patterns–procrastination, doubt, self-sabotage–then that’s exactly what will happen.
 
In life, you don’t get what you want, you get what you expect.
 
Here’s another example to truly drive this point home about how much expectation and assumption can get in the way of you creating the success you want and living the life you dream of…
 
A few months ago, my cousin announced on her Facebook page that she’s taking her mom to Hawaii for her 60th birthday–in two years. My cousin likes to plan things out way ahead of time; it makes it feel more doable for her that way. And then she invited whoever wanted to join them to leave a comment so she could get a head count.
 
And one of her friends commented and said, “I’d love to join you!! But we can’t afford it.” Now keep in mind this trip is TWO YEARS AWAY (in 2019). Yet this woman already assumes and expects that the way things are for her financially right now is how they’ll also be two years from now.
 
And for her, they will be, because she’s already projecting into her future that assumption and expectation. So of course that’s what will show up for her–because you don’t get what you want, you get what you EXPECT.
 
Assumptions and expectations are what keep people stuck, spinning their wheels and living mediocre lives they don’t love, because they expect and assume that things will always be the same and won’t ever change. Expectations and assumptions are the reason people spend months, years and even a lifetime repeating the same behavior patterns and continuing to create the same results–usually ones they don’t want–over and over again.
 
It’s sad, really, because life can change practically overnight when you change your thinking and change what you expect and assume. How?
 
Instead of saying, “I can’t afford it” to something that’s two years away, open a savings account and commit to putting 5-10% of your income into it every month. Two years from now you’ll not only be able to afford the trip, but that leap of faith, acting-as-if action will help make the trip a done deal.
 
The truth is, expectations and assumptions are just a MINDSET–a way of thinking that can keep you stuck and playing small. So if you change what you expect and assume–you can change your whole life.
 
Yes, it does take having faith in the Universe and trusting in uncertainty. But just like anything else, the more you do it, the better you get at it.
 
So instead of continuing to expect that you’ll never finish your novel or you’ll never find an agent or you’ll never get reviews on Amazon or no one will want to buy your book or read it anyhow, expect something different.
 
Assume you will finish, you will get reviews, you will sign with an agent, you will find a readership for your books and sell lots of copies. It may not happen right away, but if you keep focusing on the new expectations and assumptions–and keep taking action–it will eventually happen.
 
Because what you expect and assume will be your reality. You call it in with how you’re choosing to think. And yes, it’s always a choice.
 
Your thoughts, beliefs, assumptions and expectations are what’s really creating your life and the things you experience every day.
 
So when you assume and expect what you want to show up, guess what? It eventually will. As long as you don’t sabotage it by returning to old patterns and expectations about, “that’s just how it is.” Because if “that’s just how it is” then that’s just how it will always be.
 
Change your expectations, change your life.
 
Dream life or bust,
 
 

#DailyThinkDifferent #DreamLifeOrBust

 
P.S. For the next 72 HOURS ONLY you can grab the Mid-Year Motivator writing bundle and get access to some of the best resources I’ve ever created, including the Write Your Damn Novel eCourse which is worth the entire price of the bundle (and you still get MORE!!).
 

You Can Create Anything You Want When You Believe You Can (And With This Process…)

A few years ago I decided that I wanted to get front-row parking spots. Now I have no problem parking in the back and walking. Sometimes I park far back, especially on nice days, just to get some more exercise.
 
But I also thought it would be fun to have the option–to know that a front-row spot was available, even if I didn’t want it.
 
So I decided to create a belief that I always get front-row parking spots. Because that’s all it takes to see what you want show up in your reality; you have to believe it.
 
Here’s the breakdown of how I created the belief that I always get front-row parking spots, which is not just a belief I now have, but it has also come true in my life.
 
Anytime I go to the store or out to dinner or whatever, I always get a close spot. Sometimes I don’t take it or I don’t feel like waiting a minute for the person who’s pulling out, so I just park wherever and walk.
 
But the point is, I now have the option. And that came from creating the belief that I always get front-row parking spots.
 
And the cool part is, this process works with ANYTHING that you want, whether it’s front-row parking or a six-figure book deal (I haven’t tried it for that yet, but maybe I will soon!!).
 

1. Decide What You Want

 
The first step to creating anything is knowing what it is that you want. You have to get really clear on it, otherwise you won’t be able to create it exactly as you want it.
 
Grab your journal or notebook and freestyle-write in it for 10-15 minutes, getting really clear on what you want. Dig deep here and write it all out.
 
After you’ve finished, choose one thing that you’re going to start with. Yes, you can install multiple beliefs all at once if you want to, but that can take more time because you’re spreading your focus out.
 
If you choose one new belief to focus on at a time, you can program it into yourself faster and make it show up in your reality faster too.
 
Once you know what the one new belief is that you want to create, write a very specific, concise sentence that feels good to you and that declares the new belief you’re now choosing to create.
 
For example, “I always get front-row parking.” Simple, to the point and powerfully declares what I want.
 
Action Step #1: Get clear on one new belief you’d like to create for yourself. Write a specific, concise belief statement that feels good to you and powerfully declares what you want.
 

2. Tell Yourself How You Want It to Be

 
The next thing I did was started telling myself that I always get front-row spots. When I’d be driving to the store or going out to eat, even on days when I knew it would busy, I’d just tell myself that I always get front-row parking spots.
 
Sometimes I’d get to the store or restaurant and there wouldn’t be any front-row spots. But I’d ignore that, park my car wherever and keep telling myself that I always get front-row parking spots.
 
And sometimes I’d get there and there would be a front-row spot open and waiting for me, or someone would be just about to pull out and if I waited a couple minutes I could have their spot right up front.
 
The most important thing is that you don’t ever look around and say, “it’s not working.” Even when it isn’t working.
 
If I didn’t get a front-row spot, I didn’t say that it wasn’t working, because I knew I was working on it, and that soon it would be working. So I just chose to believe that it was working, even when my physical reality said it wasn’t.
 
Action Step #2: When you’re out and about living your life, tell yourself the new belief over and over again. Say it out loud, say it in your head, write it down every morning in your journaling, repeat it as much and as often as you can (this is why I recommend doing one new belief at a time, because more than that can get overwhelming to keep track of).
 

3. Bring On the Gratitude

 
Whenever I’d get to the store or restaurant and actually got a front-row spot, I’d always say, “thank you Universe!” as I was parking. This is key, because being grateful for what you have brings you more.
 
So anytime your new belief actually works and you see evidence of it in your reality, be sure to acknowledge it and say “thank you Universe.” Acknowledging it means you’re paying attention and putting your focus on it. And whatever you focus on expands.
 
Action Step #3: Say “thank you” in the moment, when your new belief or evidence of your new belief actually shows up in your reality. And also be grateful in general, for all the good things going on in your life. Gratitude is a powerful tool for changing your life.
 

4. See It As Normal

 
Eventually I could feel the belief that I always get front-row parking starting to become the norm for me, meaning I’d go to the store or restaurant and more times than not, there’d be a front-row parking spot. That means I’ve normalized getting front-row parking.
 
And what’s normal for you is what will always show up. Expectation is a huge part of the manifesting process. So once you’ve seen enough evidence of your new belief happening in your real life, it’s time to start accepting that belief is normal for you.
 
Now when I get a front-row spot, I say, “of course! Thank you! More please!” This is a combination of gratitude and expectation.
 
By saying “of course” I’m acknowleding that this is normal for me. Saying “thank you” is bringing gratitude for what I have into the mix, and “more please” is telling the Universe that I want more of that exact thing.
 
“Of course! Thank you! More please!” is how you’ll make your new belief normal for you. (Shout out to my amazing friend and client, Maru Iabichela, who taught this statement to me!)
 
Action Step #4: As you continue to experience your new belief or see evidence of it show up in your life, start to mix into your gratitude statements phrases that acknowledge this new belief is now normal for you. Of course! Thank you! More please!
 

5. Keep Going

 
At this point I’d say the belief that I always get front-row parking is pretty engrained in me. But I still continue to reaffirm it every time I’m parking my car.
 
Because it never hurts to remind yourself how good you have it, and it just continues to program that belief into your subconscious mind.
 
Repetition is everything.
 
Action Step #5: Continue to collect evidence of your new belief and reaffirm it as much as possible.
 
Once you feel like your new belief is programmed enough that it’s now real, you can go through this same process with another new belief that you want to create.
 
Again, you can definitely work on multiple beliefs at one time. I do this every day in my journaling and mindset work when I write out my reality and how I want things to be in every area of my life and business. But I also have a few beliefs I’m actively focused on programming into myself.
 
Because a belief is just a thought you keep thinking. And if you can change the way you’re thinking, then you can change what you believe.
 
Aligning your beliefs with the life and success you dream of having is what’s going to bring it to reality for you.
 
Write with a purpose, live with intention,
 
 
#DailyThinkDifferent #DreamLifeOrBust
 
P.S. The doors to the Bestselling Author Mastermind are CLOSING Sunday April 16 at 11:59 p.m. EST!! If you want an inspiring, motivating, empowering, supportive environment to become the novelist and author you dream of being, there’s no better place for you. AND as a member, you get FREE access to all of my workshops and digital products that cost $100 or less (and 50% off the ones that cost more than $100).
 
 

If You Never Decide and Then Take Action, You’ll Spin Your Wheels and Stay In the Same Place

A year ago this month I was writing what would go on to become my first Amazon best selling book: Align Your Writing Habits to Success. I had no idea that was going to happen with that book. It wasn’t even a thought in my mind.

Because the only thing I was thinking about was the decision I just made to become a best selling author on Amazon in 2016 and the action I was taking next, which was to write and publish more books.

And that’s where Align Your Writing Habits to Success came in. After making the decision to become a best selling Amazon author and to write and publish more books, I received a Divine Download to take the content from the free 30-day writing habits challenge I created and turn it into an eBook.

So I did it. I took action and a few weeks later, Align Your Writing Habits to Success debuted on Amazon, hit #1 in the Authorship category and then stayed in the top 6 for a couple months.

In hindsight I can see the reason why this all happened as quickly as it did… because I decided that it would and then I took action.

Deciding is a HUGE part of achieving your goal. In fact, I can see now that not fully deciding and then taking action is a big part of why I spun my wheels in my writing life for so many years.

Why?

Because deciding cuts off all other options. Deciding says THIS IS WHAT IS GOING TO HAPPEN. Deciding means you’re putting your full belief in the goal you’re going after.

You may not know how it’s going to happen or when, but you can absolutely decide that it will happen and the details will work themselves out. But to do this requires something most people have a very hard time with (myself included at times)… Trust.

You must KNOW in your heart and soul that you are MEANT for whatever you want to achieve. You must FEEL IT. But even with that level of belief in yourself and in your goal, you must also have TRUST and FAITH in the Universe to deliver what you’re asking for, so long as you do your part (your part = deciding and then taking action).

The trust component to creating success is so important! And yet it often gets overlooked. You’ve probably experienced this first-hand. (I know I have!)

You want something. You want it bad. You dream about it at night and think about it all day long. It’s yours.

Except it’s not showing up in your reality. You’re not actually experiencing it or holding it in your hands. It’s not real in your world.

And you wonder why.

You’re doing the work. You’re showing up pretty consistently. You thought you were making some progress. And yet… nothing.

What it all comes down to, is trust.

If you’re feeling impatient or if you’re looking around at your reality and saying, “it’s not working” or “it’s not showing up,” then you’re not trusting. You’re actually doing the opposite of trusting.

You’re stuck in lack thinking and you’re afraid.

You’re looking around and noticing the lack of the thing you’re asking for, rather than trusting that you placed your order and you’re doing the work, which means what you’re asking for will eventually show up. Not having patience means you’re afraid that what you want won’t actually happen or that you’re not meant for it or that someone else may beat you to it (impossible, by the way, as there are things that only you are meant for and could ever do).

And that’s why deciding is such a huge part of creating what you want.

Because without deciding that it’s DONE and that it’s YOURS and no one and nothing in the world can take it away from you–even if you don’t physically see it in your reality or hold it in your hands right this minute–you’ll just continue to be impatient and continue to look around and say, “this isn’t working.”

And that’s where you’ll stay. Stuck and spinning your wheels.

Because the truth is, it’s always whatever you decide that it is.

So if you decide it’s not working or you’re not meant for it, well, guess what? That’s exactly what you’re going to experience.

But when you decide that it’s yours–even if you don’t have it yet–and when you feel it on every level of your being, that’s when it will come to you. And not a minute before.

But once you get there, once you get to making that decision and having that infinite trust and feeling in your soul that it’s yours and its on its way to you, it will show up so fast your head might actually spin.

There was less than a month between when I fully decided I was going to be a best selling author in 2016 and when it actually happened.

A month! After years and years of not allowing myself to want it because I had no idea how I’d make it happen, it happened. Within a month of deciding.

That’s how powerful deciding and then taking action can be when you let it.

So, what will you decide?

Write with a purpose, live with intention,

 

 

 

#DailyThinkDifferent #DreamLifeOrBust

P.S. It’s the FINAL DAYS to join the Bestselling Author Mastermind, my high-level community and mentorship group for multi-passionate authors who want to write better stories and create the habits, craft expertise, mindset, consistency and follow-through of a bestselling author.

As a member you get:

> 3x a week live-virtual work sessions where we come together as a group and get our writing/writing projects done

> A monthly live-virtual workshop or group challenge –you either get access to a workshop I’m doing that month or I run a challenge inside the BAM group to get everyone motivated and taking action

> 3x a week accountability check ins, plus monthly goal setting and check ins

> Unlimited access to Jennifer in the private BAM Facebook group

> A monthly story deconstruction, and training in Revision, Publishing, Mindset and Productivity

> FREE access to all of Jennifer’s workshopsand digital products that cost $100 or less

>> Join us here

Just Feel Good and the Rest Will Take Care of Itself

A life coach that I follow online once posted something on Facebook where she talked about the kinds of music people listen to. She said if your life is awesome and you’re happy, you most likely listen to upbeat, festival-type music that’s peppy and has positive lyrics. But if you’re listening to country music, for example, or music with not so happy lyrics, that could actually be why your life isn’t working as well as it could.

And I get what she was saying with this—that you attract things to your life based on how you think and speak. I agree with that and whole-heartedly believe it and live it.

What I disagreed with is the idea that just because a song has negative lyrics that means listening to it or singing along with it would cause your life to be negative too.

I listen to rock music (mostly from the grunge era), and if you know anything about rock music, the lyrics aren’t exactly peppy. Usually the lyrics are angry or expressing a negative emotion or experience.

But that doesn’t mean my life is negative. The exact opposite, in fact. My life is always better when I’m listening to the music that makes my soul happy.

Grunge rock does that for me. It brings me back to a simpler time in life when I was growing up and falling in love with music for the first time (as I’ve fallen in love with music many times over the years).

That always evokes a happy feeling in me. And singing the words out loud—even negative words—helps me amp that happy feeling up even more.

It has often been said that words have power. And they absolutely do. But where the power really comes from isn’t just from the words being used.

It’s the feeling behind the words. The feeling is what makes the words powerful.

When you say, “I hate you” there’s a feeling behind those words. When you say, “I’m not good enough,” there’s a feeling behind those words. And the feeling that’s behind the words is what really matters.

Because you can say the words, “I’m happy,” but if you’re not actually feeling happy inside, the words don’t have the same power as when you say, “I’m happy,” and actually are. 

The whole thing with law of attraction and manifesting the things you want in your life, is that words matter. But they don’t matter as much as feelings.

Feelings are actually the biggest deciding factor in what manifests. Because feelings create energy—either positive or negative. And energy is what attracts things.

Which means the lyrics of the music you listen to—or the words you speak—only matter if they’re creating a bad feeling in you.

Example… when you’re young and you get your heart broken for the first time, you listen to all those sappy love songs that make you think about the one who got away. That is when music and lyrics are causing negative energy and negative things to manifest. Because your focus is on lack and being not enough and feeling bad.

But if you have a playlist that you love to sing to and that brings a feeling of joy to you, for example, then no matter what the lyrics say, you will feel good. And the feeling good creates good energy that attracts positive things.

This distinction is MASSIVELY important. It could just change your whole life. 

For a long time I worried about the words I was singing out loud as I sang along to my favorite songs. Or the words I’d say by default because of my subconscious programming. But now I know better.

It’s the feelings that matter, not the words. 

And yeah, it’s true that some words just come with certain feelings. So if you’re saying “I’m not good enough” or “I can’t do that,” it’s very likely that’s what you’ll experience in your reality and attract to your life (more situations where you feel that way).

But when you’re feeling amazing inside, you can say the words, “I’m not good enough” and they won’t even penetrate you, because you’ll feel so deeply in the moment that they’re not true. 

This same thing applies to thoughts.

Law of attraction says that whatever you think about you will attract to your life. And again, I don’t disagree with this. But there’s a distinction to be made, because it’s not about the specific thoughts.

It’s about the feelings that the thoughts create.

And yes, certain thoughts will come with certain feelings, good and bad. But you have the power. Power that extends far past the words you’re hearing in your head.

You have the power to create whatever feelings you want to feel. All day every day.

Now that’s not to say you won’t have life chaos happen that tries to change how you’re feeling, you will. But if you don’t let it get to you, and you keep that happy, positive feeling inside, then no matter what happens it won’t penetrate you.

I create the happy, positive, empowering feelings that I want to feel every single day by doing my daily mindset practice, which includes freestyle journaling to get the crap out of my head, then writing affirmations declaring who I am and that my dream life is already real, and then I finish up with 5-7 minutes of visualization where I walk myself through my ideal day, weaving in as much of my dream stuff as I can (like the car I want to drive, where I want to live, the kind of activities I do, etc).

Those feelings then carry themselves into my day. And so long as I don’t allow anything else to change those feelings (yes, it IS a choice to allow something to affect you), they stay with me all day long.

This took some time to build up to. In the beginning I’d feel the good feelings for a little while and then life chaos or worry would take over and I’d be back to feeling bad. But I just kept working on it.

At one point, I was doing 2+ hours of mindset work a day. Sometimes I still do. And every minute has been worth it.

My daily mindset practice has helped me to focus my mind and get my emotions in check, so I can go through my day feeling great and manifesting great things as a result of feeling that way. 

And when I’m feeling like that, no negative lyric (or thought) in the world can change it 🙂

Write with a purpose, live with intention,

 

 

#DailyThinkDifferent #DreamLifeOrBust

P.S. It’s the FINAL DAYS to join my upcoming workshop—FINISH Your Damn Novel: 30-days of kick-ass motivation, inspiration, accountability and getting-writing-done for writers who’ve started a novel (draft or revision) and want to FINISH. We start April 1 (that’s Saturday!!).

And… I’ve added a new EXTENDED PAYMENT PLAN! Because I want to make it super easy for you to say HELL YES and join us! 

This workshop is perfect for you if you’re sick of never finishing or sick of taking so long to finish and you just want to get your damn novel (draft or revision) FINISHED so you can finally move on to the next step in the process.

I’ll be revising my novel along with you over the 30 days, as well as sending you daily motivational emails, doing livestreams throughout each week in the private workshop Facebook group to keep you moving along and overcoming all the stuff that tries to get in the way of you finishing (stuff like, life chaos, doubt, procrastination, Resistance, and more).

>> Details and sign up here 

If You’re Saying “Try” You’ve Already Missed the Point

A few minutes ago I was thinking about my August goal to sell 10,000 books. And something I kept hearing was the word “try.”

In my head I was hearing myself say, I’m trying to sell 10,000 books this month. I even said that to a few people the other day, that I’m trying to sell 10,000 books this month.

And tonight as I heard the word “try” bouncing around in my head, I realized something: by saying “try” I’ve already failed.

Because there is no try. There’s either make it happen or make it happen. That is the only option.

There’s ZERO point in trying to do anything.

Sure, try something new now and then, but don’t ever try when it comes to your dreams and your purpose as a writer.

If you’re trying to make your writing dreams happen, you’ve already failed. You’ve already doomed yourself to staying stuck, continuing to buy into the BS and giving yourself a Plan B just in case.

If you have a Plan B for your writing life you may as well just go after Plan B right now, because you’ll never have Plan A. Not with that kind of thinking.

You can’t have a backup plan for your dreams.

You either want something and are willing to do what it takes, for as long as it takes, until it takes and then keep going. Or you’re not.

Having a backup plan shows a lack of belief. It says to the Universe that you don’t believe you can have Plan A or you don’t believe that you’ll get Plan A, so you need a fall-back plan.

And when you send that kind of message out to the Universe, what do you think you’ll get back?

Definitely not Plan A. Maybe not even Plan B.

The Universe will send back to you what you’re putting out there. So you can’t try to make something happen. You have to just decide you’re making it happen and that you’re unwilling to accept anything else.

This all begins in your mind.

When you do enough mindset work, you will very easily be able to give yourself new beliefs and accept things as true that you wouldn’t have been able to before.

For years I dreamed of being a best seller on Amazon, but I never allowed myself to really want it or to even say it out loud, because I had no idea how I’d make it happen. So I didn’t even bother to try.

Until this year when I decided that it was finally time. I was finally sick of my bullshit being bigger than my dreams. I set my mind to it: I would be an Amazon best selling author in 2016.

And amazingly, after doing this, it happened only a few short weeks later.

I literally called my best seller status into my reality by finally allowing myself to not only want it, but to actually go after it. Not by “trying” but by believing that it was already a done deal…because I decided that it was.

If you’re reading this right now and you’re resonating with it and realizing that you’ve been “trying” all these years to make your writing dreams happen, now is the time for you to STOP TRYING.

Now is the time for you to DECIDE.

Do you want what you say you want? Do you really, really want it? Are you willing to do whatever it takes, until it takes and then keep going?

Then decide. Decide right now that you WILL have it. There’s no Plan B, no just in case, no more trying.

Decide right now that your dream writing life is yours. And then burn all of your bridges.

It’s ALL IN or get the fuck out.

Share With Us

Are you DONE trying? Share your decision statement in the comments. 

If you’re ready to go ALL IN on your writing life, send me an email and let’s chat about my new 1-1 coaching program: Build Your Writing Empire. I’ll help you map out the plan for your dream writing business all on your terms and the exact steps you’ll need to make it happen. And then you’ll immediately start taking action on it with me guiding and supporting you along the way. 

Are You Letting the “How” Stop You?

I talk to a lot of writers on a daily basis, and a common thing I’ve noticed is, they all have big, huge dreams for their writing lives. They want the bestselling novel and the movie deal and to be a household name in the reading world.

Problem is most of them will never get it. And it’s NOT because they don’t have what it takes to get it (well, maybe some of them don’t).

It’s because they’re either:

  • Not allowing themselves to truly want what they really want
  • Not taking action
  • Not taking enough action
  • Not taking consistent action

And all of these non-allowing and non-actions stem from one thing: not knowing HOW something is going to happen or HOW it could happen… and using that as a reason not to start (or continue). 

And here’s the truth: the HOW doesn’t even matter. It doesn’t matter!

You never, ever need to know how you’re going to do something or make something all happen. All you need to know is what you want and be committed to making it happen, regardless of what the how ends up being.

I read a lot of books about manifestation and creating your dream life, and something that has been repeated over and over in lots of different ways in these books is this: just moving in the general direction of your dreams is enough. 

You don’t have to do everything, you don’t have to go into debt (unless you can afford to pay it off), you don’t have to sell your soul or sacrifice everything you own. You just have to, as bestselling author, Mike Dooley says, “do what you can, with what you’ve got from where you’re at.”

And what that means is, start from where you are. Take whatever action you can take, right now, today, and don’t worry about the rest. 

By taking that action, you are signaling to the Universe that you’re ready for more and you’re ready for your dream writing life. You don’t have to know the HOW. You don’t even have to take linear actions. You just have to take action, period.

And sure, some days it may feel like you’re throwing darts randomly, with no idea where they’re gonna stick or even if they will. But as the late Steve Jobs always said (and I’m paraphrasing here): the pieces don’t add up ’til you look backwards at them.

So right now it may feel like you’re just doing random things that aren’t really adding up, but when your dream writing life begins to manifest in your reality, you’ll be able to look back at all the seemingly random things you did over the years and see they were actually amazingly perfect stepping stones to where you wanted to be.

The Universe always knows the fastest, easiest way to get us where we want to go–because the how is up to the Universe. So as long as you don’t muddle in the hows or worry about the specifics of how you’ll make something happen, and instead just know what you want, focus on it and then take whatever actions you can think of from where you are with what you have right now, you can trust that the dots will be connected and it will lead exactly where you want to go (or somewhere even better!).

Now this is all a lot of woo-woo stuff, which I’m into. But I also like to ground it out with examples.

An Example of Not Messing With the Hows

Let’s say you want to be a bestselling author. That’s the goal you’re focusing on. Now at this point, you have no idea how you’ll make that happen, but you’re going to trust that as long as you do what you can with what you’ve got from where you’re at, that the Universe will show up for you and connect all the dots.

With that in mind, what actions could you take right now, from where you are? Here are some ideas…

  • Write a book–your chances of being a bestselling author increase when you actually write something
  • Publish your book–your chances increase exponentially when you actually publish the book and put it out in the world where other people can find it and buy it
  • Get started writing and publishing another book–because your chances of being a bestseller will increase even more when you don’t get attached to any one book being the bestseller, and just stay focused on being a bestselling author
  • Work on your mindset–this is super important, because when your mind is in the right place, your reality will follow
  • Intend what you want–do this over and over again. Intend not only what you want–to be a bestselling author–but intend it like it has already happened: I am a bestselling author, all of my books hit #1.

This is what it looks like to take action in the direction of your dreams without messing with HOW you’re going to make that specific dream happen.

An Example of Messing With the Hows

I wanted to show you this example too, because this is the version that most people do. Most people try to mess with how something is going to happen, instead of just taking action in its general direction.

With that in mind, here are some examples of what it looks like to mess with the Hows (and therefore get frustrated and pissed off when things aren’t working out, and then possibly even give up or quit, which is worse):

  • Coming up with a book idea, deciding this book is going to be your bestseller and then writing it–great, step one is obviously to write a book, but what’s going wrong in this action is the “deciding this book is going to be your bestseller.” That’s messing with the hows of becoming a bestselling author. That’s trying to tell the Universe how to make something happen, instead of just letting the Universe figure it out
  • Publishing the book you’ve decided is going to be your bestseller and then spending weeks, months, maybe even years marketing it–maybe to some degree of success and maybe not. The idea isn’t to pick a book you want to have become a bestseller and then turn it into one. It’s to write lots of books and trust that as you do, one of them will be the one that tips the scales in your favor.
  • Refusing to write or even focus on another book until the one you’ve already published is a success–rather than just writing and publishing and then writing and publishing again, you’re focused on this one specific book being successful. That is, again, messing with the hows. It’s not up to you to decide this will be the book that makes you a bestseller. It’s up to you to stay focused on being a bestselling author, and a bestselling author doesn’t just write and publish one book, right?

By being so attached to this specific book being the one that makes you a bestseller, you are limiting all other options and possibilities. That’s messing with the hows. Don’t do that.

An Example from My Real Life

And one final example, this time from my real life. So in February this year, I met my current mentor, Kat Loterzo, who is the author of 47 books (46 of which have been bestsellers on Amazon). Before I met her, being a bestselling author was something I wanted, but it wasn’t something I was allowing myself to be open to.

And why? Because I couldn’t see HOW it would happen!

But when I met Kat, it finally dawned on me: I don’t have to worry about how it will happen. I just need to trust that by being open to the possibility of becoming a bestselling author, and doing the work, the how will take care of itself.

So I wrote down that I am a bestselling author. I declared it and I decided to be open to it. Soon after I got the idea for a 30-day “align your writing habits to success” challenge that I would do to help clean up my writing habits and get aligned with being the bestselling author I wanted to be. Then I invited my community to participate with me and more than 100 people signed up to join in.

When the month was over, my writing habits were completely overhauled and I was inspired to share the challenge with more writers. I decided to turn the challenge content into a multimedia, interactive eBook.

I put that book together in 15-minute daily sessions over the course of 30 days and then published it. During that time I also committed publicly that I’m going to write and publish one eBook a month for the rest of the year. I had a book idea in my mind that I was going to write after I published the writing habits book.

In my mind, this new book was it. It was going to be my bestseller. It’s a book the writing world has needed for a long time now. So I just put the Align Your Writing Habits to Success eBook out there with minimal promotion or even attention paid to the launch, because I was ready to move on to the next eBook.

And then I discovered the day it launched that it was at #3 in its category! And a thought hit me: what if this is the one? Could I get it to #1? 

I jumped in and actively started telling people about it, sharing the book, making short teaser videos for Instagram and telling my friends and family on my personal Facebook page about it (which I don’t always do). And this time I told them I wanted to hit #1 and I asked them to buy the book.

And then it happened. My book, Align Your Writing Habits to Success, hit #1 on Amazon in the authorship category, stayed there for a day and a half, and then went back to #1 a few days later. 

I didn’t even have one shred of a thought that this book would be the one to make me a bestselling author…until I saw it at #3 and realized, with some effort, I could pull it off.

Now yes, I did a lot of work to make this happen, but looking back, all of the HOW came directly from the Universe–everything from the inspiration to create the 30-day challenge to the desire to turn it into an eBook to spread the message further to randomly thinking of checking in on launch day to see where the book was at in the rankings (which, to be honest, is something I never really do. But now I will be!). 

That was the HOW for me becoming a bestselling author. But in order for it to happen, I had to do my part, which was to jump on the inspiration I received back a few months ago when I created the challenge. It was to take action from where I was at.

I could’ve instead tried to figure out which book I needed to write to become a bestseller, I could’ve gotten attached to it being one book over another… but instead, I just focused on what I wanted: to become an Amazon bestselling author, and then I acted from where I was with what I had.

Magic can happen when you let go of the hows and focus instead on what you want and then taking action in its general direction.

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What are you going to start taking action on right now, today? 

 

And speaking of the book I originally thought was going to be my bestseller, it’s called The Pro Writer Mindset and it comes out on June 14! Get on the waitlist here so you’re the first to know when it’s live.

Image courtesy of Infrogmation of New Orleans

You Can Have Any Writing Life You Dream Of, But…

Every writer I come across has big dreams. Not all of them will admit to it. Some will tell you they just want to write and publish a book for themselves, so they can say that they did it and if they never sell a single copy, that’s OK.

But you can see a fire behind their eyes when they talk about it. You can tell there’s a whole lot buried in there that wants to come out and see the light of day.

Except you’ll never see it, because some writers just aren’t willing to step up and claim what they want.

But you’re not one of those writers. I know this, because if you were, you wouldn’t be here right now reading this.

No, you’re a writer who has big dreams. Who wants to be a New York Times bestseller and see your novels turned into movies on the big-screen with big-time Hollywood actors playing your Protagonist, Antagonist and love interest. And you’ll get to help with the script and have a cameo in the movie, as well as walk the red carpet at all of the movie premieres all around the world.

Or maybe it’s just me?

Either way, here’s one thing I know: you can have ANY writing life you want. ANY.

If you want the kind of writing life where writing is a hobby and you keep your day job, you can have that. If you want to write full time, you can do that. If you want a writing life as massive as someone, like Stephen King or J.K. Rowling, you can have that too. (Yes, REALLY).

It just comes down to a few things:

  1. Are you willing to believe it? Belief is the number one thing needed to make a dream come true. If you don’t believe or can’t believe in the writing dream you want for yourself, it will never happen.
  2. Are you willing to show up every day and do the work? If you’re not, you’ll never have the writing life you dream of, and I can tell you that with one-hundred percent certainty. Dream all you want, but when it’s all said and done, the successful writers are putting in the work, day in and day out.
  3. Are you willing to write your own rules and create your own reality? An important question, because if you’re not (and that’s OK), it’s gonna be pretty tough to achieve the dream writing life. And the reason is you’ll get stopped by or stuck in the societal norms of being a writer that tell you things like, you can’t make money; being a writer is a hobby, not a real job; writing is hard and takes a long time to be successful at; you’ll never make it to #1…whatever limited things you believe right now. Those things will hold you back and keep you from the success you really dream of. So you have to be willing to step outside what other writers believe and create a new normal for yourself.

Hey, if it was easy to have the dream writing life, everyone would have it. It takes work–both internal and external–to make it happen.

But it CAN happen.

Literally anything is possible in today’s world, so long as you believe it is and then act like it every single day. 

And just ’cause I love examples, here’s one for ya: let’s say you want to sell 50 books a month. That means you need to find 50 people a month wiling to pay money in exchange for your book. As long as the book is available digitally and easy to access (like on Amazon or BN.com), it can totally happen. And pretty quickly, depending on the work you put in.

There are billions and billions of people in this world. A very large percentage of those people are online. And you only need to find 50 of them. Fifty out of billions and billions? Seems pretty doable, doesn’t it?

And that’s the thing I love the most about being an authorpreneur in the digital age. The internet has dropped all barriers between the creator and the consumer and you can connect with people from all over the world and sell your books, services, products, etc. to the people who want and need them most.

This puts you in the driver’s seat, giving you total control of your writing destiny–where you end up and what you create along the way. Empowering, isn’t it? Kinda makes you want to sit your ass in a chair and write something right-freaking-now.

So it’s true, you really can have whatever writing life you dream of. But you’ve gotta believe it and act on it every single day.

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What are you going to do today to move closer to your dream writing life?

Featured image courtesy of LassenNPS 

6 Ways to Defy the “Societal Norms” for Being A Writer

When it comes to being a writer (and a creative person in general), there are societal “rules” that will automatically be placed on you. Rules like, it has to be hard work, if you’re not working hard you’re not really earning it, you have to pay your dues and work your way up from the bottom and you can’t make a full-time living as a writer.

These rules are generally considered to be true by most of society, including a whole lot of writers. But that doesn’t mean you have to play by them.

You create your own reality and you do it with your beliefs, your thoughts and your actions. So that means you can create whatever reality you want to live in, including one where all of these bullshit societal norms do not apply.

You can choose to create a reality where you get to make up the rules and you get to decide what it’s like for you as a writer.

Here are 6 ways to do that:

1. Decide What You Want Your Reality to Look Like

This is the super-fun part. You get to make up what you want your reality to be like, look like and feel like. Because you create your own reality with your thoughts.

But before you can create what you want, you have to first get really clear on what that is (otherwise you might doom yourself to having default success). The clearer you are, the better.

The easiest way to get clear is to grab your journal and write down what you want your life to look like in every area: your writing life, money, relationships, possessions, your body, your health, your hobbies, whatever areas are important to you. Write about your dream life as if it’s already happening right now.

(Here’s a video that talks more about how to do this.)

2. Choose the “New Normal” You Will Live By

Now that you’re clear on what you want your life to be like, it’s time to set the rules for your new normal. Right now you’re living life based on societal norms, telling you things that are unsupportive of the dreams and goals you have for your writing life.

It’s time to buck that by instead creating the rules that you will live by, regardless of what everyone around you is doing (and I’m not talking about breaking actual real laws, like the kind that will put you in jail).

Here’s what I mean by creating new rules: if everyone in the writing world beliefs that “it takes years of hard work to write a good book,” you can decide not to live by that “rule.” You can decide that you can write a good book in one year, with ease.

Crazy? Maybe. But doesn’t it feel so much more inspiring and motivating to live by that rule? Doesn’t that rule open up so much more possibility?

Now, of course, there are specific actions you’d need to take to make that rule actually work (like mastering craft, hiring a story development coach, writing the book, hiring an editor, finding some Beta Readers, doing the revision work, etc). But it’s absolutely possible for you to write a good book in a year.

And it doesn’t have to be hard, either. You can decide that it will be easy (that, again, comes with specific actions, like hiring help to make it easier for you).

The point being, whatever you want your new normal to be, it can be. But you have to choose it and then step into it. You can’t just choose it and then keep doing the stuff you were doing before, hoping it will work.

You have to choose it and step into it.

3. Commit to It and Be Consistent

The next thing you have to do after you step into it is commit to it. You must commit to having it exactly as you want it, no matter what it takes.

And committing also means being consistent with it. Because it’s not gonna happen overnight. It will take time for it to manifest in your physical world.

The commitment and the consistency are what help it show up faster.

4. Don’t Stop, Ever

This goes hand-in-hand with number three, because at first your new normal will only be in your mind and on paper, but it won’t have fully shown up in your physical world. For this reason, most people who start to defy societal norms and ways of thinking will turn back soon after they’ve left the shore.

Because “nothing is happening.”

The funny thing is, there is more happening in the “unseen” that you can ever even begin to imagine. But to bring it forward to your physical reality, you have to show up, do the work, be consistent and keep going until what you want to see actually manifests, physically.

Think of it like a seed. When you plant a seed it takes weeks, sometimes months, before you see signs of life. Every day you look at your little cup of dirt and see nothing. Nothing is sprouting. All the watering and sunlight is for nothing.

But what you don’t see are all the roots growing under the soil, grabbing on and taking hold so that when the plant does finally pop through, it will have a foundation in place to actually stick around.

Same with creating your new normal. It takes time. When you start doing the “write your reality” exercise, you’ll feel things starting to shift internally before you’ll see the results in your physical world.

Let the internal feelings and shifts be enough for right now. If you keep it up, the rest will follow. I promise you.

5. Ignore Everything Around You That Doesn’t Match This

Another tough one. Because when you’re not seeing stuff happening in your real life, you may start to worry that it’s “not working.” Or, some things you’d generally consider to be negative might start showing up, and then you’ll freak out and really think it’s not working.

Just know there is a “clearing out” period that comes with any big transition. Right now you’re up-leveling your new normal, and that will come with growing pains.

You have to stay focused on the big vision and know that it will show up, and right now everything in your life is just realigning itself with the new normal you’re asking for.

Back at the end of 2014, I made the decision to give up freelance writing in order to focus 100 percent on story development coaching. It was a very scary choice for me, because at the time freelance money made up the biggest percentage of my income.

But I hated freelance writing. I hated being told what to write about. I wanted to have full control of my time and my writing.

So I made the decision to let it go and to focus on story coaching. And not only did I make the decision, but then I declared it to the Universe (out loud, to my coach, and on paper).

Before I could even start taking action on it, something crazy happened.

I lost my high-paying freelance gig. The company decided they wanted to save money by bringing the position in-house and so they ended my contract. I had one payment left from them and then I was on my own (although I’ll add we’re never really “on our own”).

Fucking scary. Especially because that project was bringing in the money I needed to pay for my bills and living expenses for the month.

And then even scarier, a long-time client I’d be working on a nonfiction book project with decided he wanted to take his business in a new direction and he was going to shelve working on his book for a while.

It was like the rug got pulled out from under me, twice. All the consistent work I had was falling apart. I wanted to cry.

But I held tight. I reached out to my support system (my coach, my accountability partner) and they talked me off the ledge of panic.

I stuck with it. And literally the same night my client and I parted ways, I received an email from someone who wanted to sign up for my 90-day program and get help writing his first novel. This told me that my new normal was already in play, and all I had to do was keep going.

Without even taking much action apart from making the decision to give up freelance and focus on fiction coaching, and then declaring it to the Universe, my life started rearranging itself to match what I was asking for.

Growing pains. Time-gaps. It’s gonna happen. Hold tight to the big vision and trust that when you show up and do your part, the Universe will show up to support you in making it happen.

6. Expect It to Show Up

This might be the hardest one, especially for writers who a lot of times tend to be very skeptical and overanalyze everything. This step is really about having faith. Not religious faith (unless that appeals to you), but faith in the Universal law of “like attracts like.”

If you’re putting something positive out there, you will get something positive back. That’s what like attracts like means.

That’s why writers who bitch and complain about how hard it is and how many hours they’re putting in and seeing very little result from or whatever they’re bitching about, you can see what shows up for them. Writer’s Block. Excuses. Life-chaos that distracts them from doing the writing. Procrastination.

And with an attitude like that, it doesn’t matter if they put in 10 hours of work a day, it still won’t make a difference.

Because they’re not aligned with the success they want to have. They’re playing by societal norms and having those same results show up for them.

It doesn’t have to be hard. You don’t have to give up your whole life and just write. You don’t have to spend 5 hours a day writing.

I wrote my #1 bestselling Amazon book in 15-30 minute blocks of time over a 30-day period. I no longer buy into the belief that it has to be hard or take a ton of time. I live by a new normal and I’m flourishing.

You get to choose. You get to decide which societal norms you apply and which you defy. And it’s OK if the writers around you follow different “rules.”

You don’t have to live in their realities.

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Which of these steps are you going to act on right now?

Are you ready to defy societal norms and create the writing life you dream of having? Then be sure to check out the Bestselling Author Mastermind, the high-level, kick-ass accountability and success mindset group for emerging authors who won’t settle for anything less than their dream writing lives.