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).

The Crazy Thing I Did This Morning

I’ve been on my writing journey since I was 11 years old, but in the last five months, shit has gotten REAL. I’ve stepped it up BIG TIME.

A year ago, I had finally published my first novel–a debut 18 years in the making. But then I got stagnant. I let the success of getting my novel out there be enough.

I killed the momentum I built by letting it ride, instead of celebrating and then getting back to work on the next book. I let it be enough.

But the truth is, it’s not enough. Not nearly. Because I want to have hundreds of published books, in all forms.

And why not?? I have TONS and TONS of ideas for books I can write. Most I’ll probably never write, but of the thousands of ideas, hundreds will come through as “I’ve gotta write that.”

That’s just the kind of writer and author I want to be.

When did this vision for my writing life solidify? When I met a multi-bestselling authorpreneur named Kat Loterzo. She has published 47 books–46 of which were best sellers on Amazon. And when I met her, it was like the vision for my writing life opened up.

I want to build a writing empire centered around my books and me as an authorpreneur. 

She was the first author who made the self-publishing career I want to create for myself seem attainable. She inspired me to no end.

So I joined a bunch of her group programs, which totally changed everything for me. Her work got me aligned to the work that I’m meant to be doing in the world and the message I’m here to share with writers. She brought out the writer and author I’ve always known was inside me, but who I was previously too scared to fully step up and be.

Since meeting Kat five months ago, I have:

  • Become an Amazon Best Selling author in multiple categories
  • Published 2 eBooks (one of which hit #1 on Amazon multiple times)
  • Sold almost 1,500 books
  • Added 2,000+ new subscribers to my email list
  • Started listening to my intuition and letting go of planning (day-to-day planning, that is; I will always be a story planner)
  • Been more visible online than I ever have before
  • Committed to writing and publishing 9 books in 2016 (8 eBooks and 1 novel)
  • Revamped all of my writing habits
  • Aligned my writing habits, thoughts, feelings and actions to the success I dream of having
  • Taken action, consistently, every day
  • Created more content than ever before
  • Had more ease, flow, joy in my daily life
  • Gotten more new clients
  • Made connections with some big-name players in the writing world

A good mentor brings that kind of progress out in you. Which is why this morning I finally did something that I’ve been thinking about doing since that first group program I took with her.

I hired Kat as my 1-on-1 mentor.

I stepped WAY WAY WAY out of my comfort zone and bet on myself. I stretched myself beyond where I’d usually go. And I put my money where my dream is (the most money I’ve ever invested, aside from going to college).

Am I freaking out? YES! Majorly freaking out.

In a good way. This is a HUGE leap of faith for me.

But I know the Universe is totally gonna catch me and support me in making this leap. Because that’s the Universe’s job.

Your job is to decide what you want and why you want it, then the Universe goes to work figuring out the How. All you have to do is keep moving in that direction.

A week ago I asked myself, “If I’m in the same place next year at this time as I am right now… will I be upset about it?” And the answer was YES. I’ll be VERY upset about it. I always want to see progress and I want to see myself grow and, at minimum, double up on my success from the previous year (though tripling and quadrupling up is just fine too 😉 ).

So this morning, I made a leap of faith. I paid Kat the first payment for her 6-week program and I’m IN.

Doing this was incredibly scary and yet also incredibly freeing. Because I’ve not only seen Kat’s work with other authors and entrepreneurs (as well as with herself), but I’ve also experienced incredible success just by being in the same virtual vicinity as she is.

I’m a better authorpreneur when she’s around. And I CANNOT WAIT to see what I accomplish when I actually get to interact 1-1 with her on a regular basis!!!! 

This is the biggest leap of faith action I’ve taken since quitting my job in 2012 to work full-time for myself. But you need to take leap of faith actions from time-to-time, because it shows the Universe a very clear message that you are ready for more and willing to do whatever it takes. So I’m committed to taking frequent leaps of faith.

Now I turn the tables to you: When was the last time you took a leap of faith action? When was the last time you went after something you wanted so badly you could taste it? 

If you can’t think of an answer for this… it’s time to reevaluate. Because if you want to do great things in the world, it requires you to think BIG and act BOLD.

Fortune favors the bold.

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What leap of faith action can you take today? 

Ready to take a leap of faith in your writing life? Check out the Bestselling Author Mastermind, a high-level accountability, kick-ass motivation, strategy and success mindset group for emerging authors and authorpreneurs who want to create their dream writing lives on their terms. 

Image courtesy of Tiago

How To Manifest Anything You Want (And Fast!)

Two Decembers ago, two days before New Year’s, my husband, Joe’s, grandpa passed away. We knew he’d been sick, but weren’t expecting him to die so soon.

Joe and I currently live in New York, but his family lives in Texas. Which meant we had to take an unexpected trip (we were planning a visit, but not ’til the next month).

Problem was, we didn’t have the money for the trip. Christmas had just passed and things were tight.

At the time I was doing a lot of mindset and manifestation work, and something I knew in my gut was, if we really wanted to go down to Texas for the funeral, we had to decide right then and there that it was a done deal and then we had to take action like it was.

I asked him: do you want to be there for the funeral?

Or course the answer was yes, so immediately I said, OK, then it’s done and now we need to act like it is.

So we pulled out our suitcases and started packing. I got on the phone and canceled all the appointments we had scheduled for the week. We knew we’d be driving down, so Joe took the car to the shop to make sure it was safe to drive it. He called to tell me there was a minor problem that needed to be fixed before we took it on the road. It was a $200 fix.

Even though money was tight and we still had no clue how we were even going to pay for the trip to go to Texas for the funeral, we just kept acting as if we already had the money. We got the car fixed. We called the vet and got my dog flea medicine (’cause them Texas fleas ain’t no joke!)

In our minds, going to Texas was a done deal.

So later that day when I received an unexpected payment of $2,500 from a prospective client I spoke with weeks prior, I wasn’t totally surprised.

OK, that’s a lie. I was freaking blown away! After only a few hours of acting as if our Texas trip was a done deal… it was. We had the money we needed to go to Texas for the funeral.

This is still one of my absolute favorite manifestation stories (and I have a lot of them). And when I look back and think about what I really did to make it happen, this is how it breaks down:


If you want to make something happen, it absolutely starts with deciding what you want. Once you know what you want, then you need to decide that it’s a done deal.

You have to decide you want it, it’s yours and that getting it is a non-negotiable. This is really the first step.

Acting As If It’s A Done Deal

Now you can’t just decide something and get it. You have to actually take action. And the actions you take need to be FROM the place of it already being a done deal.

If my hubs and I had decided we were going to Texas for the funeral, but then instead of taking action in that direction we just went about our usual day, there’s no way the money would’ve manifested. It manifested because we took action in that direction.

We packed our suitcases. I canceled appointments because we were going to Texas–we decided it–so we wouldn’t be there for the appointments. We spent money we didn’t have to repair something on our car that didn’t really need to be fixed, but it would be better for it to be if we were going to drive it 3,000+ miles to Texas and back.

We did this because if Texas was already a done deal, and the money was already in our hands, those are the exact actions we’d be taking.

So we took those actions… in faith.

The money wasn’t in our hands yet, but we knew it would be if we just kept moving in that direction. Because Texas was a done deal.

Which brings me to…

Take A Leap of Faith

In order to make the leap from where you are to where you want to be, it requires a leap of faith. You have to be willing to risk being wrong and go for it. You have to be willing to believe that it will happen.

Otherwise it won’t work.

A friend of mine recently announced on Facebook that she had applied for a temporary job, which she was really excited about. After her interview, she decided she wanted the job.

Even though she didn’t know for sure that she had it yet, she decided to act like she did. She dyed her hair a more normal color (’cause they didn’t allow blue in the workplace) and she bought some work clothes.

These actions sent powerful signals to the Universe, signals that said: I got the job. The job is already mine.

So not long after when she posted a status to Facebook sharing that she did, in fact, get the job, I wasn’t at all surprised.

Because she acted as-if. And acting as if is the most powerful way to manifest anything you want.

But it took a risk. She dyed over a hair color she really loved and spent money on new clothes. She did this in faith, believing that if she took action in the direction she wanted to go, she’d get what she wanted. And so she did.

Sounds too easy, right?

Can you really just decide you want something, move in that general direction and then get it? Yep.

Problem is, most people aren’t willing to take the risk, to deal with the uncertainty of not really knowing if it was going to work out. So they don’t take those actions. They just decide they want something and then sit around hoping it will happen, or they take tiny actions that are comfortable, but don’t push themselves to take the bigger, scarier actions.

And so they don’t manifest what they want, even though they want it.

If my friend had applied and interviewed for the job, but then didn’t get prepared to actually have the job–by dying her hair and getting some new work clothes–do you think she’d have gotten the job? Probably not.

Getting what you want requires a leap of faith and taking a risk–even a small one.

Be Open to the How Showing Up

So often people think they have to figure out how they’re going to make something happen before they can take action. And that couldn’t be more wrong.

The how isn’t up to you. The how is up to the Universe.

What’s up to you is the what and the why.

You don’t have to know how something is going to happen to make it so. You just have to decide and then move in that general direction.

We didn’t know how we’d get the money to go to Texas, we just believed that we would and moved in that direction. So of course the money showed up.

We were open to taking action. We didn’t know which action would make it work, so we just took whatever actions we could think of.

And that’s all you need to do too.

What Does This Have to Do With Writing?

Everything, really. Because this process of deciding what you want and then acting like it’s already a done deal, it works in all areas of life, not just with jobs and money.

It works with being a bestselling author, it works with getting your writing project done, it works with any result-based writing goal you can come up with.

You just have to decide what you want, know it’s a done deal and then move in the direction of it.

For example, when I decided a couple months ago that I wanted to hit #1 on Amazon, I had no idea how I’d make that happen. I just knew I wanted it to happen. And then I went to work moving in that direction, I:

  • Made a decision to write and publish one eBook a month for the rest of the year (because the more books you write, the better your chances are of hitting #1, right?)
  • Wrote my new eBook (in 15-minute increments over the course of 30 days)
  • Got inspired to create a high-level accountability group for emerging authors who were ready to make big things happen
  • Named the new group the Bestselling Author Mastermind and I actively told people they could watch me as I became an Amazon bestseller (a big risk–considering I had no idea when it would happen or if it even would, I just believed that it would)
  • Published the book
  • Paid $32 for a promo to a list of book lovers 
  • Posted stuff on social media and sent emails to my list

Those were the actions I took in the direction of becoming an Amazon bestseller. Again, I had no idea how it would happen or even which book it would happen with. But I knew it would eventually happen. So I acted like it.

Here’s how the Universe showed up for me, it:

  • Found 113 people to buy my book over a three-day period (and then another 476 over the rest of the month!)
  • Inspired a results-based title that helped the book to pretty much sell itself
  • Aligned the timing so that my book outsold all the other books in its category long enough for it to be at #1 for a day and a half (and then it went back to #1 again a few days later)
  • Dropped in my inbox a half-price sale for a software called Bestseller Ranking Pro (which I purchased and used as a research tool for how many books I’d need to sell to hit #1 and what category to put the book in–which turned out to be the one all my eBooks are in: authorship)

And on May 4, 2016, I became a bestselling author on Amazon. The how showed up because I was willing to take the actions I could think of and stay open to getting inspired ideas for additional actions to take.

You can have anything you want for your writing life and your life in general. Anything.

But you’ve gotta be willing to decide and then move in that direction until it takes.

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Have you ever manifested something out of seemingly nowhere? Share in the comments!

If you’re ready to act as if you’re already the writer and author you dream of being, be sure to check out the Bestselling Author Mastermind, a high-level accountability and kick-ass motivational group for likeminded emerging novelists. 

Image courtesy of Raelene Gutierrez