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What You Focus On Expands, So Focus On What You Actually Want

For a long time in my life, I focused on the bad stuff. The negative, annoying, bad things that were happening all around me. The news. Society. Other people. My bad habits. My insecurities. My “not good enough” bullshit.

I focused on that stuff, all day long most days. And hating my day job caused me to complain with people about how bad things are.

During my final job working for someone else I spent upwards of eight hours a day complaining with my coworkers about how bad things were there. Eight hours!!

Talk about focusing on what you DON’T want.

‘Cause here’s the thing… whatever you choose to focus on, expands. It grows. And you start to see more and more evidence of it.

This is true whether what you’re focusing on is “good” or “bad.”

And that’s what I finally realized when I was still working a soulsucking day job: I get to choose. I get to decide what I focus on and what I take my attention away from.

I’m not gonna lie, I definitely still complained with my coworkers. (It was kinda hard not to, things were really shitty at that company.) But when I got home, I left the complaining at the door.

I shut off my work phone and put it away and didn’t look at it again until I was sitting at my desk the next morning. Whatever happened, happened. I didn’t care anymore. I was DONE working for someone else and DONE working at a place I didn’t believe in.

I made the choice to block it all out, like I didn’t even work there. And instead I focused as much of my attention and energy as possible on what I actually wanted: to work for myself.

I got home at night and I blogged and I wrote and I worked on building my writing business. I got really good at acting as if I wasn’t working for someone else anymore (even though at the time I still was).

I had a quit date, it was written down and I declared at the beginning of 2012 that this was the year I’d finally leave my job and work for myself.

I believed it. With every ounce of my being. Even though I had ZERO clue how I’d make it happen. I just trusted and I kept acting as if.

When I got to the office every day, I told myself I was at my side gig and I was consulting and wasn’t really an employee. I pretended I had a contract and that it was over on my quit date.

I believed it.

And I FOCUSED on it.

So when I ended up quitting and leaving three months before the quit date I set, I wasn’t at all surprised. Because what you focus on expands.

And I’d been focused on working for myself and being able to do whatever I wanted whenever I wanted. That was my dream.

But I was also focused on complaining with my coworkers when I was at the office. So that continued to expand too, and before I knew it, the entire place had become one big fucking shit show.

When I put in my two weeks notice I didn’t even end up finishing the entire thing. I’d had enough and I didn’t want to have ANY of my focus on that stuff anymore. So I went to the HR lady and told her I was done.

And I walked away–OK, I admit, I danced away like a fool in my car–and started a brand new life as an entrepreneur.

Whatever you want, you can do it too. You can use your focus to create whatever YOU dream of doing and having and being. ANYTHING.

It’s all up to you. And simply by placing your focus on exactly what you WANT in your writing life and beyond, and REMOVING your focus from all of the things you DON’T want, you will totally change your life. Why?

Because life grows where focus goes.

Dream life or bust,

 

 

#DreamLifeOrBust #DailyThinkDifferent

P.S. It’s the FINAL DAY to join us for the Manifest Your Writing Dreams to Life workshop. We’re kicking things off and jumping right in.

Thirty days of guidance, support and accountability so you can create the writing life (and more) that you’ve always dreamed of. This is an action-taking workshop–you won’t just be sitting around learning a bunch of stuff about manifesting, you’ll actually be diving in and DOING every single day.

DOORS CLOSE AT 11:59 PM CDT TONIGHT!!

>> Details and sign up here: www.jenniferblanchard.net/landing/manifest

I Live In A Magical Writer World… Care To Join Me?

There are two main types of writers: the ones who buy into the lack thinking and limitation spewed by the writing industry and many of the writers and authors in it, and the ones who know you create your own reality.

Which one are you?

I admit, there was a point in my life where I did buy into the BS beliefs of the writing industry, like it’s hard to be successful or you can’t make a living from your books unless you’re traditionally published or writers are broke/poor. I used to believe the starving artist mentality.

But then I discovered that’s all it is: a mentality. A mindset. A WAY OF THINKING.

And I didn’t like it one bit.

Because deep down I didn’t really believe it. I believed it on a surface level, because that’s what I thought all writers believed.

Until I started to meet authors who were making thousands of dollars a month from their books and authors who make $100k+ a year from their books and writers who got an agent the first time they pitched one and writers who got signed with a NYC publisher their first time around.

And I realized that it really is true: you create your own reality.

YOU get to decide what you achieve, how successful you are and whether or not your writing dreams come to life. YOU. No one else.

There are no limitations except the ones you put on yourself. Period.

I read a survey the other day of authors who make $100k a year from their books, and this was one of my favorite quotes from it:

“Never give up! I was told I could never make it, but I proved everyone wrong. I was rejected by one 300 agents and publishers. And it was a blessing in disguise!!! I now run my own ship and make my own rules. I keep 70% of my earnings! Getting shot down by publishers was the BEST thing to ever happen in my entire life! I wish I could give them a hug! They did me a huge favor and I found indie publishing.”

[The survey was pretty inspiring and had some eye-opening results… check it out here: https://www.writtenwordmedia.com/2017/06/07/100k-author/]

This survey–and all the authors who took it–are living proof that you CAN make a living from your books. There are many, many authors out there doing it.

You can do anything. You can be anything. You can create anything. And it can all be on your terms.

That’s the life I’m committed to living–a life that’s all on my terms. Where I get to decide, I get to choose and I get to say what’s true for me.

I believe that I can have it all and do it all… everything I dream of.

And you can too.

There’s no difference between me and you. I’m just a little further along than you are.

So I invite you to STOP. Stop buying into the BS lack thinking and limitations the writing industry and other writers try to place on you. Stop believing that it has to be hard (yes, you have to work hard, but it doesn’t have to feel hard). Stop getting caught up in other writers and authors limited beliefs around what’s possible (or not) for them.

Here’s the truth… if you want to live an extraordinary life where all of your dreams come true and everything is on your terms, you have to give up the notion that you will ever be able to be “normal” or fit in with most other writers.

You won’t and you can’t.

Because normal writers don’t live extraordinary lives. Normal writers buy into lack thinking and limitation. Normal writers email me to say things like, “who are you to charge $10k to ghostwrite a novel?”

Normal writers DO NOT GET IT.

But writers who think different do. And there are lots of these writers and authors out there.

They’re the ones actually hitting ‘publish’ and actually making money from their books and actually pushing the limits of what they believe is possible.

Big dreamers are not normal. Big dreamers are extraordinary. Big dreamers are willing to do the work and willing to risk it all for what they really want.

Big dreamers go all in on their dreams and they refuse to give up. Ever.

Big dreamers fully live my mantra, Dream Life Or Bust.

I’m damn proud to be a big dreamer, to not be normal and not think like most other people out there. Damn proud. Because I love my life and I love being me.

I live in a magical writer world where I get paid good money for my words and sell lots of books and believe and know that I can achieve everything that I decide I will and then act on.

Want to join me?

It’s all up to you.

You get to decide.

You get to choose which writer world you live in: the one with lack and limitation, or the one with unlimited abundance and possibility. Because whichever you choose is what will be.

I know you’re scared. I know all the BS you’ve heard your whole life about what it means to be creative or to be a writer. I know you worry that you won’t be able to pull it off.

But you will. You just have to choose.

Dream life or bust,

 

 

#DreamLifeOrBust #DailyThinkDifferent

P.S. Are you ready to create YOUR magical writer world? Then be sure to join us for Manifest Your Writing Dreams to Life–30 days that will totally shake up your ways of thinking and being.

This isn’t for the faint of heart, but it is for multi-passionate writers who want more.

Is that you? If it is, you don’t want to miss this!!

>> Details and sign up here: www.jenniferblanchard.net/manifest

It’s Time To Stop Being So Hard On Ourselves

Growing up I was conditioned to associate dinner with dessert. My family is big on dessert. So after dinner every night, my mom would always let us have dessert.

Sometimes it was a waffle sundae, other times fried dough or sometimes it was a franken-snack like Pop Tarts, cereal, toaster pasteries or whatever sugary treat my brother and I decided we wanted to eat.

And while that association between dinner and dessert was great when I was kid–I mean, seriously, what kid doesn’t want to eat sugary snacks that taste delicious!!–it’s not so great today, as an adult who wants to be healthy and live life free of the ailments that plague so many.

Because no matter how hard I try, I always want to eat dessert or snacks after dinner. Even when I’m not hungry. The habit is that strong for me.

And for the last few years it’s a bad habit I’ve struggled a lot with. Because I hate it, and yet I still want to do it.

So anytime I decide to have dessert or I cave and eat a ton of sugar, I give myself a hard time about it. Sometimes it’s all I think about all day… you got to stop eating dessert or you’ll end up with diabetes or worse… do you want to be healthy your whole life? or do you want to be like all those people who believe that falling apart and bad health are just part of getting older? … you’re not gonna be able to maintain your body weight much longer if you keep this dessert-eating habit up…

On and on the negativity in my head just streams, like a song playing on repeat. And when I’m giving myself a hard time about something, it makes me feel demotivated and drains my energy.

So I decided to take my question to my mentor, someone who’s overcome some seriously bad habits around food. I asked her, “How do you break a habit that is super engrained in you… like needing to have dessert after dinner. This is one of the worst habits I have and I want to break it but feel like it’s so deeply engrained that it’s damn-near impossible.”

And what she said to me was, “I think you need to stop looking at it like a bad thing and stop giving yourself a hard time about it, and instead reframe it. I enjoy having a treat at night. I wouldn’t want to give up my after-dinner dessert, but I just choose to eat healthy things that I know will make me feel good, like raspberries with almond butter or Greek yogurt with coconut and berries.”

Sounds so obvious when I hear her saying it, and yet my mind never went there. My mind never said to me, “hey, how about instead of eating cookies or chips, you have some berries or chia pudding?” Eating berries and chia pudding as my dessert wouldn’t bother me at all, because I love that stuff and it’s good for you.

So rather than giving myself such a hard time about the “bad” habit, I just needed to reframe it. And this exercise works with anything.

I reframe stuff all the time, until it feels good to me. For example, last night my husband and I went out to dinner and then to this old-school video game pub I recently found (yes–an old-school video game pub!! My novel SoundCheck has come to life!!), and when we were leaving, our car wouldn’t start.

He got frustrated and started worrying about not having the car the next day for what he needed to do and how long we’d have to sit on the side of the road waiting for AAA to show up, etc., and then after I called for roadside assistance the car suddenly started right up. Which is pretty damn annoying and inconvenient.

But rather than see it that way, I reframed it for us… maybe it was Divine Timing. Maybe if the car had started when we first tried it would’ve put us in a bad situation on the road and we avoided it completely by the car not starting.

When you look at it that way, it makes it not feel so bad that we had to sit there and waste time for 20 minutes.

That’s the power of a reframe. It can change your entire mindset and way of thinking and feeling.

And it can help you stop being so hard on yourself.

When you look at the things in your writing life and life in general right now that you don’t like or that you’d consider to be “bad,” you can ask yourself, how can I reframe this? How can I shift my perspective?

Do this exercise right now. Think about something you usually give yourself a hard time about.

Go ahead, I’ll wait.

Got one?

Now I want you to think of how you can reframe it into a positive perspective.

Do it right now, either in a journal or in your head.

Got your reframe?

Great.

Now stick with it. Use it whenever you’re giving yourself a hard time.

And realize that the more things you reframe, the better you’ll feel, which is the whole point. You’re meant to feel good. Feeling good is how you create the positive, uplifting energy you need to bring your dreams to life.

Plus, it feels pretty damn good not to be so hard on yourself all the time about every little thing. If you have bad habits, it’s not because you’re bad, and often these habits are serving you in some way or you’re getting something out of it.

When you’re nicer to yourself and don’t constantly give yourself a hard time about everything, you’ll actually build up your confidence and start to feel good about who you are.

And confidence is what you need if you’re gonna go after your dream writing life with everything you’ve got.

Dream life or bust,

 

 

#DreamLifeOrBust #DailyThinkDifferent

P.S. If you need to stop giving yourself a hard time about everything and build up your confidence muscle, there are still a few days left to join us for the Writer’s Confidence Boost workshop.

People see me as a confident writer, speaker and creator. And I am. Now. But that’s definitely not where I started.

I’m an introvert and incredibly shy (almost painfully so at times). It took serious practice and commitment to create the confident author you now see before you.

And I’m going to show you how I did it.

If you want to be successful as a writer, you need to build up inner strength and confidence and fully believe in yourself. The Writers Confidence Boost 14-day virtual workshop will help you do exactly that.

And right now you can get in for 93% OFF the full price!!!

>> Details and sign up here: www.jenniferblanchard.net/landing/confidenceboost

The Side of Success You’re Most Likely Ignoring

I spend a lot of time with creative people—both online and in person—and one of the commonalities I find is this: struggle.
 
Creative people, for the most part, have a belief that being successful as an artist and creator is a struggle. That it has to be hard.
 
And that’s why, for so many creatives, it is. It’s a struggle and it’s hard.
 
No one is paying attention. No one is interested. No one is buying.
 
Those are the complaints I hear creative people speaking on a regular basis. But here’s the problem… and it’s two-fold.
 
First, so what? You either want it or you don’t. You’re either in it for the long-haul or you’re not. If you’re not, or if you have a backup plan, you might as well call it quits now. And if you are, then shut up and do the work.
 
Being creative is awesome and it’s the thing that drives us, but it’s not enough. You can’t just be creative. You also have to learn the business side of being a creative.
 
At least if you intend on making a living out of it.
 
If you don’t want to make a living out of it, that’s fine too. No one says you have to be a professional creative. But you wouldn’t be reading this post right now if you just wanted a side project.
 
You’re reading it because you want to make a living from your creative gifts. Because you need to. There’s this nagging pull inside you that says this is the only thing you can ever really do with your life.
 
Sure, you may try to do other things to keep yourself a float, but you always come back to the creative stuff. That’s the stuff that drives you. It’s the stuff that makes you get out of bed in the morning.
 
And making it your full-time thing is a dream you’ve had, pretty much forever.
 
So you grind and you struggle and you do the work. Sometimes. Other times you get caught up in your current reality that says it’s not working. Nothing is happening. You just keep getting rejected or hitting dead-ends.
 
And so you don’t bother to do the work. You stop being consistent and you stop caring. No one else does, so why the hell should you?
 
But then you look around you and see all these other creative people making it happen. Many of them you’d consider to be a lot less talented than you are. And it drives you insane!! Because you just keep thinking… that should be me.
 
I should be the one with the deal. I’m the one who should be featured in front of the masses. I’m the one who should be quitting my job to go full-time with my creative life.
 
Yet it’s happening for others, but not for me.
 
Then you start to tell yourself the same ‘old stories… they must be lucky. They must have rich parents who paid their way. Life is working against me. Maybe I’m just kidding myself. I must be doing something wrong. I must not deserve it. I must not have worked hard enough yet or struggled for long enough yet.
 
And it goes on like this for years.
 
When you start to build up some consistency and are starting to see little hints of success, you suddenly sabotage it by continuing to look around and declare that it’s not working and then you stop being consistent and doing the work… because no one is paying attention, no one is buying anything, and it’s not working anyhow.
 
It’s tough, this being a creative, thing.
 
But what if there was a better way? What if there was a way to guarantee your success?
 
This brings me to the second part of the two-fold problem with creatives: there’s a side of creating success that you don’t know about (or maybe you do know about it, but you’re not paying it any attention).
 
The metaphysical side.
 
And not knowing about—or paying attention to—this side of creating success is the reason why you’re not seeing the results you want yet or why things feel like such a fucking struggle.

The metaphysical side is the stuff you can’t always see, but that are in play 24/7/365: your mindset. Your beliefs. Your habits. Your consistency. Your commitment to doing the things that matter, every single day, no excuses (even when you don’t feel like it and even when you think it’s not working). Your willingness to do battle with creative Resistance and doubt and fear and self-sabotage, and finding a way to push through and keep going anyhow.

The truth is, THIS is the stuff that matters the MOST when it comes to creating success. Yes, you have to do the physical actions part. Without that nothing works.
 
And yeah, you could choose to do the creative thing only paying attention to the physical reality that you see around you to give you direction and tell you what to do next.
 
But you’d be choosing struggle. You’d be choosing difficulty. You’d be choosing lack and limitation.
 
And there will always be a better way. A better way that is totally in your control and that you can design and create EXACTLY how you want it to be.
 
You’ll still work your ass off. There’s no way around that.
 
But it won’t feel hard. And it won’t be a struggle. Everything will just happen with ease and flow, like it’s naturally supposed to.
 
The truth is creative humans fuck it up for themselves, because we get in our own way so damn much. And then we’re too damn stubborn to throw in the towel on struggle and choose the easier path, because we’ve been programmed to believe that the creative path is struggle.
 
So even though the easy path looks so good and sounds so good, we can’t bring ourselves to choose it, because we’ve convinced ourselves doing that would mean we didn’t really earn it.
 
Creatives are a stubborn bunch.
 
I used to think and feel the exact same way. Used to procrastinate and tell myself that’s just how it is. Used to be inconsistent with my writing and my marketing and I’d just blame it on my job at the time or make excuses about life getting in the way.
 
And I even accepted all of the bullshit stories and told myself that it was OK.
 
Until I finally woke up one day and decided, you know what, I don’t want to struggle anymore. I don’t want to hold myself back anymore. I don’t want to have the same shitty, mediocre existence that so many other creatives have because they’re continuing to tell themselves bullshit stories about “what’s true for them” and refusing to choose the easy path.
 
I committed myself to the easy path. To a life where I get to be me and write and create what i want to, all day, every day, AND get paid for it.
 
Committing to the easy path and choosing to give up struggle didn’t come with a silver platter. It came with a massive responsibility.
 
To show up every day. Even when I don’t feel like it. To work on my mindset. DAILY. To create daily habits that support my success. To be consistent. To put first things first. To be disciplined enough to do what matters, every single day, even if that means sacrificing other things. And to no longer accept excuses from myself.
 
It’s a lot of work to be successful. But it doesn’t have to be hard.
 
So you can continue to tell yourself that it’s a struggle and that you just have to keep on manipulating things in your physical reality to try and make something work (UGH!! It’s SO HARD!!!)
 
Or you can choose to tend to the metaphysical side of creating success, and deal with your inner bullshit—the patterns and the BS stories you’re still telling yourself about who you are or how the world works—and figure out what actually matters and actually moves the needle in your creative work and commit to doing that stuff first things first, every single day, before you do anything else.

Commitment, consistency, doing what matters, putting first things first, creating habits around the most important stuff, and daily mindset work… that’s what it takes to be a successful creative on the easy path.

Are you in?

Share With Us

What do you need to be putting first things first every day? Share in the comments. 
 
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Want to start tending to your metaphysical side of success? Grab a copy of my FREE eBook–The Bestselling Author Mindset Formula: How To Think Your Way to #1 and start moving in the direction you really want to be going.

What Would You Need To Believe To See The Reality You Want To See?

That’s a question I ask myself A LOT. What would I need to believe to create the reality I want to see?

Because your thoughts and beliefs create your reality. 

So if you want to achieve something or have something show up in your life, you need to be directing your thoughts and beliefs toward that goal or that thing. And the more you do that, the more your brain will accept it as real until one day it actually will become real.

You’ll be able to see it, hear it, touch it, maybe even taste it and smell it (depending on what it is). It will have manifested in your life.

The more you give your time to directing your thoughts and beliefs, and focusing on the things you want to create, the easier and faster you’ll see these things show up. 

This whole ‘thoughts become things’ may seem crazy when you first hear it. It’s contradictory to everything you’ve been told about life and how the world works.

But even as contradictory as it sounds… there’s this weird feeling in you that, it may actually be true. Because when you hear it, your ears and your brain perks up. It resonates with you.

Or it might scare the fuck out of you.

Because the idea that you’re in control of what shows up in reality and that your beliefs and thoughts create the reality that you see around you… that puts a lot of responsibility on your shoulders.

You have to actually take control of yourself and your life. 

The whole ‘thoughts become things’ scares me at times, too. But I’ve practiced it enough now to know that it actually DOES work. And it’s INSANE at times when stuff shows up in your life after you’ve thought about it.

And the Universe is always giving you little signs and signals to tell you that what you’ve been thinking about and focusing on is showing up. I see signs of my dream life ALL the time.

Lately I’ve been writing in my journal that my novels get turned into movies. This is my ultimate dream for my fiction—to turn my novels and my stories into movies on the big screen, with big-name actors and actresses. And of course, I get to help with the screenplay and have a cameo in the movies 🙂

Now no one would know that I’ve been writing about this in my journal unless I told them, right? (I haven’t told anyone until right now.) And yet the other day, a girl in my free Facebook group posted the craziest message… she had a dream that she was on the movie set for my novel, SoundCheck. 

HOW CRAZY IS THAT??!!

OK, maybe that’s too woo-woo for you and you’ll brush it off as coincidence or random. It’s totally fine if you want to do that.

But here’s what I know: coincidence doesn’t exist. It’s not random when things happen that you’d usually call a coincidence. 

It’s a sign, a signal from the Universe that what you’re asking for is unfolding. All you have to do to continue seeing signs and signals, is to KEEP GOING.

So I ask myself all the time what beliefs (and thoughts) I’d need to have to see what I’m asking for show up in my life.

When I look at this novel-to-movie dream, some of the limiting beliefs that pop up for me are:

  • No one I know has ever done this
  • What makes me think my stories are good enough to be on the big screen?
  • Being a Hollywood screenwriter is a pipe dream
  • There’s too much competition for me to achieve this dream
  • Millions of other novelists have this exact same dream—to see their novels as movies on the big screen—what makes me think I’ll be one of the novelists who actually does it?

YUCK!

Thoughts and beliefs like that are NOT going to help me achieve my goal of having my novels turned into movies. 

That’s why I have to ask myself what I’d need to believe in order to create what I want to see, so I can dig out those limiting, negative beliefs and thoughts that are going to hold me back.

When I think about the beliefs I’d need to have to align with my novel-to-movie goal, I think of:

  • Nicholas Sparks, Sophie Kinsella, JoJo Moyes, Stephenie Meyer, Kathryn Stockett… just a small handful of novelists who have seen their novels turned into movies. If it can happen for them, it can happen for me.
  • I know my genre and I know my readers and I know my stories would make awesome chick flicks
  • You can do ANYTHING you set your mind to… even this
  • There’s no such thing as competition because no one else can ever be me
  • Shared dreams are powerful connectors between writers, and it motivates and inspires  them to know what’s possible for one writer is possible for another

BOOM!

Beliefs and thoughts like that are much more likely to get me to my end result of seeing my novels turned into movies. 

And that’s why I spend time each day creating and crafting my reality, exactly as I want to see it. First by writing about it in my journal as if it’s already my real life; and then visualizing it and feeling as if it’s already real; then going into my day acting like it’s already real and taking action in alignment with the belief that it’s real.

I taught a workshop locally last weekend all about my Bestselling Author Mindset Formula, and after I explained my daily mindset practice to the group, one man raised his hand and said that what I’m doing is a self-hypnosis exercise that focuses your brain.

And that’s really what writing your reality and crafting your thoughts and beliefs is. It’s reprogramming (or self-hypnotizing) your mental computer to focus on, think about and believe what YOU want it to.

Not what society has told you to think and believe. Not what you were taught to think and believe. Not what you see other people thinking and believing.

But what YOU want to think and believe.

That’s what matters. That’s the only thing that matters. Yes, action is involved too. You’re not gonna create your dream life sitting on the couch watching Netflix. You have to take daily actions that align with your goals.

But you knew that already.

What’s hard is getting yourself to take the actions and take them daily and consistently, like you know you need to be. And that’s where the beliefs come in.

Because when you believe something is already true, you’re much more likely to take action and do the work. When you believe it’s possible for you to have, do and be something, you’ll turn off the Netflix and get to it. 

But when you have beliefs and thoughts that contradict the goal you have, that’s when you’ll use Netflix (and procrastination, and binge-eating, and wasting time on Facebook) as a way of sticking your head in the sand and avoiding the work.

Which is why you’ve gotta get your mind to your goal before your life will get there. Beliefs create thoughts which create actions which create results. 

Want to hear the best part?

You can get wherever you want to go in your writing life, by starting right where you are right now. And by consciously deciding that you will direct your thoughts and beliefs toward the outcomes and results you want to see in your life.

I really challenge you to take this one on. To spend 5-10 minutes a day consciously directing your thoughts and beliefs to where you want to go. Do it first thing in the morning if you’re able to. (Here’s a book and journal that can help you do this.)

Direct your thoughts and beliefs every day for the next 90 days. Report back.

Expect miracles. 

 

Share With Us

What old belief(s) are you going to let go of? Create a new belief(s) and share it in the comments. 

———–

Want to reprogram your beliefs and thoughts so you can align them with the writing goals you have? Grab a free copy of my eBook–The Bestselling Author Mindset Formula: How To Think Your Way to #1 here

What Stories Are You Telling Yourself?

As writers and storytellers, we’re often thinking about the fictional stories we want to tell and the fictional reality we want to create for our characters. 

But we don’t often think about the fictional stories that we’re telling ourselves. The fictional programming we’ve had since childhood that’s creating our lives and our realities right at this very moment.

While the fictional stories we want to tell are important, what’s more important is the fictional stories we’re telling ourselves.

Because it’s THOSE stories that are causing us to either have it all or have nothing. To love ourselves and our lives or to dislike all of the above.

You may not realize it because it’s a mostly subconscious thing, but there are stories you’ve been telling yourself your entire life—or that you’ve been told your entire life—about the so-called reality of the world and of life and of you.

But here’s the thing… just because you’ve had those stories and told those stories for so long, doesn’t mean you have to keep telling them. Because you don’t.

You can create ANYTHING you set your mind to, and ANYTHING is possible and achievable when your mind believes it is.

ANYTHING!!!

So with that kind of knowledge and that kind of power… what would ever make you think that you have to continue living those old stories that you’re telling yourself? And you know the stories I’m talking about…

  • I’m broke
  • I can’t do this
  • It’s too hard
  • Money is so hard
  • Life is a struggle
  • Writing is a struggle
  • Writers are broke
  • Writers don’t make money
  • Writing isn’t a real career
  • I can’t get paid to do what I love
  • Doing what you love is for retirement
  • I’m fat
  • I’m ugly
  • I’m too old
  • I’m too young
  • I’m not good enough
  • [insert your own BS stories and excuses here]

All of these (and more) are just FICTIONAL STORIES!! They’re made up, bullshit things that you’ve been telling yourself your whole life—or have been told your whole life. BUT—you don’t have to keep CHOOSING to tell this story or to let this programming run in the background of your mind.

You can consciously CHOOSE every single day, to write a new story. To wake the fuck up and realize that you are the only one who creates your reality. YOU. No one else. And no one else has ANY control over you or your life—unless you CHOOSE to give your power and your control over to them.

Life doesn’t happen to you. You DON’T have to live your life just reacting to what’s happening around you.

You can CHOOSE to create the day, week, life, MOMENT that you want to have, right fucking now. You can choose it and you can create it. All you have to do is set your mind to it and not deviate from that thought.

And you do not, do not, DO NOT have to do what everyone else is doing. In fact, you shouldn’t. Even if your best friend is doing it. Even if your siblings are doing it. Even if your parents are doing it. Even if every damn person around you is doing it.

That is their choice—and yes, they are making a choice, even subconsciously—to buy into the bullshit. To believe that reality is what’s true and imagination is what’s fictional.

When the TRUTH IS, it’s the OTHER WAY AROUND!!!!

Your thoughts and beliefs are CAUSE, the current reality you see around you is EFFECT. Which means your imagination and thoughts are what’s actually REAL and your reality is FICTION.

Because you can change and shift your reality anytime you CHOOSE to. You can wake up today and think a new thought and create a new, empowering belief, and act in a different way.

Normal people who know me think I’m out of my damn mind. People tell me on a regular basis that I live in La-La Land. And you know what?

I DON’T GIVE A FUCK!!

Because I KNOW what’s true about the Universe that we live in and I KNOW that living in La-La Land is the ONLY WAY to make your dreams a reality.

Yes, you have to take real, practical and consistent action in your actual physical reality, every single day. BUT—if you can get your mind to your destination first (via your imagination), you WILL see the results you want to see.

It’s literally IMPOSSIBLE for you not to. Because THAT’S HOW IT WORKS!!

If you keep showing up, keep directing your mind to where you want it to go, and stay entirely focused on your dreams and on the goals you have for yourself and your life, you will get there. It’s inevitable.

You just have to find a way to IGNORE everything in your current reality that you don’t like, don’t approve of or don’t want to live as a story anymore.

I get up every single morning and spend 30-60 minutes journaling and creating the reality I want to see in my real life. Over and over and over again programming into my mind and into my beliefs what I know and want to be true for me and my life.

Some might call that insanity. I call it using your power to intentionally create the life you want.

I no longer let life’s little BS get to me. Because I know that will always happen, and it’s my perspective, attitude and choice how I respond to it that really matters.

It’s time to release the old stories. Time to figure out what you actually WANT to see and have happen in your life, and then reprogram any thoughts and beliefs that oppose it.

Because it’s totally up to you. And a belief is just a thought you keep thinking. Which means you can CHANGE IT anytime you CHOOSE TO.

No, it won’t be easy. But it WILL BE easier than continuing to live a life that makes you miserable, depressed and causes you to wonder if this really is all there is.

I’m here to tell you it’s not. Not even close. Because the reality you currently see around you is just a product of—the EFFECT OF—your previous ways of thinking, believing and acting. And your thoughts, beliefs and actions are ALWAYS in your control.

Really, they’re the only things you need to be in control of. Because once you’re in control of your thoughts, beliefs and actions, you can and you will be able to create absolutely ANYTHING you want for yourself and your life.

Even if what you see in your current reality is a million miles away from where you want to be.

That gap can be filled QUICK when you tune into your inner world and connect with the power of your mind. A current reality that looks dire right now can totally transform in a matter of days—even minutes—when you get your mind in the right place.

Transformation does not have to take years and years of your life. Transformation can happen in an instant—if you’re open to it and believe that it’s possible.

Because that’s what it all comes down to. What do you believe is possible? And not just what do you believe is possible, but what, specifically, do you believe is possible for YOU?

Most people won’t take on the responsibility of caring about how they think, what they believe, how they act and how they feel. They won’t because it’s easier to just keep focusing on the negative stuff and to keep telling yourself the same old BULLSHIT stories that you have up to this point.

It’s EASIER.

But really… is it?

Because living a life of struggle, of lack, of limitation, of NOT ENOUGH is one of the HARDEST things I’ve ever lived through. And it made life SUCK.

What I do now is so much easier. I get up every single day and I journal and I set intentions for my day and my life and for who I am and want to be. And then I do the work, I take action and I show up for my dreams. All the while trusting that it will all work out, because it always does.

Do I have days where I get caught up in my current reality and worrying that I’ve lost my mind thinking that things will ever change for me? You bet. We all do. It’s part of being human.

But I REFUSE to stay stuck in that. I REFUSE to let that take over my mind and all the work I do to keep my focus on my dreams and where I want to go.

I REFUSE to live my old stories of struggle, lack, limitation and not enough anymore. I just flat out fucking refuse.

Why?

Because I’m better than that (and so are you). And I know what’s possible when you believe it is. I’ve seen it and I’ve experienced it and I’ve lived it.

And that is what I will continue living. A life of ease. Of flow. Of abundance. Of unlimited possibility and potential. A life where dreams come true, success is inevitable, and I can HAVE IT ALL and ON MY TERMS.

That is the life I CHOOSE to create. And so it is.

#DreamLifeOrBust

Share With Us

What life are YOU choosing to create? What old stories are you telling yourself? What can you let go of right fucking now? I wanna know! Share in the comments.

10 Steps to Making Shit Happen (aka: The “I Don’t Know How” Guide)

For a long time I dreamed of seeing my book at #1 on Amazon; of more readers finding my books and transforming their lives, because the books is at #1 and actually has a chance at being shown to potential readers.

Problem was, I had no idea HOW I was going to make this happen. I didn’t know anyone who’d done it. And I had never done it before, so the steps were unknown to me.

So because I didn’t know HOW I was going to get my book to #1 on Amazon, I didn’t allow myself to want it. I just pretended that I didn’t care and that it didn’t really matter to me.

I even recall making fun of authors who called themselves “best selling authors” just from hitting #1 on Amazon. (And now I do it–ha!)

The point being, I did everything I could think of to downplay the fact that I really wanted to hit #1 on Amazon. Just because I didn’t know HOW to do it.

Thankfully this year, I finally accepted the lesson that was given to me over and over again for years… the HOW is NOT up to you.

What that means: HOW you do something isn’t what matters. It’s DOING SOMETHING that matters.

My Story

In February I came across an author who has published 47 eBooks–46 of which were best sellers on Amazon. It finally made me realize that if she could do it that many times, I could do it at least once.

Suddenly my fear of not knowing HOW I was going to do it shifted to a belief that I could do it.

At that point, the specifics of HOW didn’t really matter, because I was finally to a place where I not only wanted it, but I believed I could have it. It finally felt possible for me to be #1 on Amazon.

So I started writing in my journal every day that, “I am a best selling author” and “I am #1 on Amazon.” And then I started talking about wanting to hit #1. I even told my accountability buddy about it.

And then I made a decision: I would hit #1 on Amazon in 2016.

(Still at this point had no idea HOW I’d do it.)

Not long after, I got an email about a tool called Bestseller Ranking Pro. Out of no way, a HOW had shown up.

I could use this tool to find the right category to put my book in, so people can actually find it. And that will help me get to #1. Boom! I bought the software.

After looking through the BRP categories and info, I decided I was going to write an eBook about the structure of love stories. The “craft” category was a good fit for this book.

I wasn’t totally thrilled with that book idea, but it was an idea to get me started. Thankfully, right after that I got another idea–what if I took the 30-day challenge I just did to help me revamp my writing habits and turned it into an eBook?

That idea really inspired me, so I decided to put that book together and publish it first, and then go back and write the structure of love stories one.

The more practical side of me also had a thought: if I’m going to hit #1, I need to write and publish more books.

So I announced that I was going to write and publish 9 books in 2016. And then I got inspired to invite people to watch me as I wrote and published these books and turned one of them into a best seller.

(Still no real idea HOW I’d do this. Just some nudges and ideas.)

I published “Align Your Writing Habits to Success” in May and two days after it went live it hit #1 on Amazon. (And then my book, “The 15-Minute Writer”hit #1 in multiple categories two months after!)

I had achieved the goal of hitting #1 and being a best selling author on Amazon.

Looking back, I never had any idea HOW I’d do it. I just took whatever actions I could think of.

And that’s the whole point.

It’s NOT about the specific actions that you take. You can take actions that seem random and if you’re still moving in the direction of your desired outcome, the right HOW will eventually show up and you’ll get there.

My story is the perfect example–I was planning on a totally different book hitting #1 by me using the BRP tool and writing a book for a specific category; and a book I never even expected to have hit #1 did, multiple times. (Pretty much shuts up the “you need to know HOW” argument, right?)

How I achieved a #1 best seller on Amazon didn’t happen because of any one thing I did. It happened because of ALL the things I did–this year and all the years leading up to this one.

The HOW that gets you to your desired end result can only be found by creating momentum. And you create momentum by taking action–any actions–that move you in the direction you want to go.

The actions can be simple, easy things and still be powerful enough for the Universe to meet you half-way.

Because the Universe doesn’t care what actions you take. Big or small. Super risky or playing it safe. It just cares that you’re DOING SOMETHING. (Although the bigger, bolder actions always pay off more than staying in your comfort zone.)

Want to become a published author? Write a book. Show up every day and put words on the page. Learn the steps in the self-publishing process. Do your research.

The specific HOW that gets you to the desired end result of being a published author will show up as a result of you doing all those other things.

What you don’t want to do is decide you want something and then sit on your ass thinking it’s just going to show up one day. ‘Cause it doesn’t work like that, sorry.

10 Steps to Making Shit Happen

If you’re been feeling stuck or frozen because you don’t know HOW you’re going to achieve something, or because you’re overwhelmed by HOW much there is to learn and know and do… I’m gonna simplify it for you in 10 basic steps:

  1. Take a deep breath and relax–it’s not that serious.
  2. Remind yourself that you’re in the right place, exactly where you are right now.
  3. Write down your desired end result (one or more).
  4. For each end result you want, make a list of all the things you can think of right now that you could do to move in that direction. It doesn’t matter if the steps are out of order, totally random, or make no practical sense; just write everything down that comes to you.
  5. Choose one of the steps/actions you listed and do it right now.
  6. When that action is done, do the next one. (Whichever one pops out to you as the one to do next.)
  7. Repeat steps 5-6.
  8. Add any new inspired actions and ideas to the list as you go.
  9. Act on as many of the actions and ideas from your list as you can.
  10. Trust that any specific HOW you need to get you to that final end result will show up as a result of you doing steps 5-9.

And there you have it–get the hell out of the HOWS and stay focused on the end result.

Share With Us

What have YOU been holding off or playing small on because you don’t know HOW you’ll make it happen? Share in the comments!

Are You Choosing “Thriving Author” Or “Starving Artist?”

So many writers and creative people hold the belief that, “it has to take a long time” and “you’ve gotta pay your dues.” And yeah, it’s also true that A LOT of people hold this belief.

But you know what isn’t true?

That belief. It’s not true. Not even remotely true.

Unless YOU decide that it is.

I’ve decided that 2017 is the year I break six-figures from my book sales. I’ve decided it’s the year I’m going to thrive in my writing career like never before.

Sure, this year has been amazing and I’ve built up some killer momentum. But it’s not enough.

Because I want to blow the ‘starving artist’ mentality OUT OF THE WATER. And, yes, it IS a mentality. One that’s keeping most authors insanely broke and unfulfilled.

But here’s the great part–you can change a mentality. 

You can actively choose the thoughts you think and the beliefs you hold. You can choose to create exactly the writing life you’ve always dreamed of having.

But you have to CHOOSE. Consciously. Actively. Every single day.

You have to decide that you’re not going to accept the ‘starving artist’ mentality as truth for you. You have to decide that you’re going to be an author who THRIVES. 

Yes, it will take time to create this in your physical reality. But it will happen a whole lot faster if you get your mind there first.

And yes, there are people in the world who refuse to see past the limitation that is the ‘starving artist’ mentality. These are the creative people who say things like, “I can’t quit my job and become a full-time writer or I’ll end up living in a cardboard box” or “writing is a hobby” or “one day I’ll make it happen” or “writers are broke” or “it’s just a pipe-dream” or [insert whatever lame excuse you give or have been given for why you can’t thrive as a writer].

Those are the creative people who will never see their full dreams come to fruition. Because it’s impossible to create a big, successful, thriving creative career with a belief like that.

And what’s sad is, just by changing that mindset and by seeing themselves as thriving artists, those same creative people could have a totally different experience.

Because you create your own reality. And you do it with your thoughts, your beliefs and your actions (or inactions). 

So if you’re looking around and you don’t like what you see; if you’re dreaming of being a thriving author, meanwhile you’re still holding a day job and barely making book sales, it’s time for a mindset intervention.

It’s time to go within, dig around, pull out those limiting beliefs–the ones that are stopping you and holding you back–and GET RID OF THEM!!!

And you really don’t even have to dig around. If you want to know what limiting beliefs you currently have, you can find out by doing 2 things:

  1. Looking around you–your reality is a reflection of all that you’ve thought, believed and acted on up to this point.
  2. Start telling yourself new, empowering beliefs–just by doing this, you’ll start to catch all the limiting beliefs because they’ll show up as that negative voice inside that tells you you’re wrong or that you can’t do it, etc., whenever you say the new beliefs.

You really can change your life by changing your thoughts. 

So your choice is to either continue buying into the ‘starving artist’ mentality, and believing that it has to be a struggle, that you have to work insanely hard and pay your dues, and that even if you do eventually make it, you’ll be lucky to earn low five-figures a year from your creative work.

OR, you can tell yourself something different.

You can tell yourself that you make millions from your books. And that you quit your job and become a full-time writer who thrives and has more than enough, always. And that your books hit the NY Times Best Seller list and get turned into Hollywood movies. (‘Cause that’s what you’re really dreaming of, right?)

Which one inspires you? Which ones makes you feel better? Which one motivates you to take action?

Exactly. The thriving artist version.

And when it all comes down to it, it’s just a perspective. If you choose to believe in ‘starving artists,’ then that’s what you’re going to find in your experience. And if you choose to believe in ‘thriving artists,’ then that’s what you’re going to find in your experience.

The reality you choose to experience is totally up to you. 

For example, a few months ago I decided that I’m well-known in the writing industry and that big-name people contact me and want to partner with me and work with me. I decided that my podcast is a must-listen for writers everywhere and that big-name people want to be interviewed by me.

This past weekend, I booked a big-name guest for my podcast AND I got contacted by a big-name author who wanted to talk to me about how we can help each other out.

Your reality is what you decide it’s gonna be. So decide you’re going to be a thriving author and you will be.

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Do you choose “starving artist” or “thriving author?” Declare it in the comments! 

———–
Are you ready to drop the ‘starving artist’ mentality and learn how to sell more books? Check out the masterclass I’m hosting: www.jenniferblanchard.net/sellmorebooks

The Pro Writer Mindset Podcast, Episode 3: The Bestselling Author Mindset Formula

You can also listen to this episode on iTunes

Show Notes:

In this episode, I talk you through my bestselling author mindset formula–the one that helped me go from unfulfilled author to 2x best selling author in multiple categories, with 5 new books written and launched in the past 5 months, and selling an average of 1,000+ books a month. THIS will change EVERYTHING for your writing life, if you let it.

Here are links to things I mentioned in the episode:

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What’s the biggest takeaway you got from this episode? Share in the comments. 

And if you enjoyed this episode, be sure to subscribe on iTunes and share it with your writer-friends (share links below)

The Pro Writer Mindset Podcast, Episode 1: An Interview With Trade-and-Self-Pub Author, Elizabeth Craig

You can also subscribe to this podcast on iTunes (it’s free!)

Guest Bio:

Elizabeth writes the Southern Quilting mysteries and Memphis Barbeque mysteries for Penguin Random House, and the Myrtle Clover series for Midnight Ink, and also writes and publishes independently. She blogs at ElizabethSpannCraig.com/blog, which was named by Writer’s Digest as one of the 101 Best Websites for Writers. Elizabeth curates links on Twitter as @elizabethscraig that are later shared in the free search engine WritersKB.com.

Show Notes:

The thing I enjoyed most about talking to Elizabeth is how freaking strong her Pro Writer Mindset is. She was rejected by agents 110 TIMES!!! Most writers would’ve thrown in the towel long before that, but she just framed it in her mind as “this wasn’t the right agent for me.”

Some additional takeaways I had from this interview:

  • Elizabeth actually got the “rights to her characters” back from her publisher so she could continue writing stories about those characters and their worlds, but self-publish them instead.
  • She recommends using your book reviews as feedback for how you can improve–especially if the same problem is mentioned over and over again.
  • Collect all the stuff you’ve written that you really love–blog posts, passages from your fiction, emails from readers–and keep them all in a folder on your computer. On the days when you’re feeling like you suck, are feeling overwhelmed or like you can’t do this, you can go back and read through these passages and be reminded of why you’re doing this and how good you really are. It really puts it into perspective.
  • Ask yourself–what’s the bare minimum I know I can write every day? 100 words? 1 page? Figure out what the bare minimum is for you, and then commit to doing at least the bare minimum every day. This will create consistency and progress, and that will motivate you to keep going.
  • Pro writers have a BUSINESS mindset–they think about their readers when they’re writing and creating their books and other content.

Share With Us

What’s the biggest takeaway you got from this episode? Share in the comments. 

And if you enjoyed this episode, be sure to subscribe on iTunes and share it with your writer-friends (share links below).