The Declaration of You: Learning To Trust the Process

This post is part of The Declaration of You Blog Lovin’ Book Tour, which I’m so excited to be a part of! The Declaration of You is a book for creative people to finally have the permission to step passionately into their lives, discover what makes them and their gifts unique, and uncover exactly what they’re meant to do. I’m such a huge believer in using your creative gifts and skills to earn income, which is why I’m supporting this book and blog tour. I hope you’ll check this project out here.

Trust. It’s one of those things we often don’t realize we don’t have, until we need it and it’s not there.

Since I was a little girl I always thought that I believed in myself. I always thought I was my own number one fan. But about a month ago, my business had a meltdown and I found myself in a really weird place.

My bank account was dwindling, all the efforts I was making to grow my health coaching business were failing, and I felt like I hit a wall. At the same time, there was something magnificent rumbling under the surface. I just wasn’t allowing myself to see it. Yet.

Since March 2008, I have been serving writers and helping them get their writing done. I’ve done this through my blogs, Procrastinating Writers, and InkyBites, as well as through the various eGuides I’ve written and workshops I’ve taught. But I never allowed myself to focus on it. I never allowed myself to see that it could be the main focus of my business.

But I secretly wanted it to be. With all my heart I wanted to wake up every day and help writers (and non-writers) take their writing from idea to draft. I wanted that to be my job.

Except there was this one small problem: I didn’t believe it was possible.

Me, one of the most woo-woo, I-trust-the-Universe people who exists, and I didn’t actually believe that my dream was possible.

I told myself being a writing coach was a “luxury job” and people don’t pay to have someone help them with their writing. I told myself it wasn’t feasible for me to have this kind of business in a “bad economy.”

But here’s the thing…these types of businesses already exist. There are many writing coaches and book coaches out there who spend their days helping people write. The need for writing; the need to learn about how to write doesn’t go away just because we’re in a “bad economy.”

If anything it becomes more important during this kind of economy, as people find ways to branch out with their businesses and take on side hustles to earn extra money. On top of that, I was already being paid to be a writer and a writing coach. I was already teaching writing workshops, writing and publishing books, and working with one-on-one coaching clients.

So what was my problem, then?

What Was Really Going On Under the Surface

Well, after digging a lot deeper, I realized it wasn’t that I didn’t believe it was possible, it was that I didn’t trust myself enough to make it happen.

I had a bit of a breakdown at that point, because it hurt. It really hurt to realize I didn’t actually trust this person (me) that I spend 24/7 with every day of my life.

I have always, always been a big dreamer, and any dreams I’ve reached in my life so far were because I had total faith in my ability to make it happen. But somehow I had lost that faith. I lost that connection to myself.

So I reconnected. I realigned myself with what I truly wanted.

I discovered that I was forcing myself to try and grow a health coaching business because I thought I should. Because I have the certification, so I should be using it, right?

Seeing that I was “shoulding” myself into a business that just wasn’t a good fit for me was the biggest epiphany of all. If you’re telling yourself that you “should” be doing something, or if you’re doing something because you think you “should” be, I say stop right now. Because you’ll never be happy doing things you “should” be doing.

No, you will only be happy when you allow yourself to finally focus on doing the things that you want to be doing, that you desire to spend your time on.

That was a lesson I needed for myself.

Where I Went Wrong

For a long time I lost faith in myself, in my ability to be the leader I know I am. I lost faith because I spent so many of my precious days in a soul-sucking day job, and that really changes you. It changes your mindset, it changes your attitude, it even changes your skills.

I had learned to be obedient. To follow the commands of a superior. To do what I was told to do. But that’s just not who I am.

I am a rebel. I am a risk taker. I am a non-conformist. And it was time for me to drop the girl I was being, and be who I really was.

It was hard at first. When I quit my job last year, it was the best thing that ever happened to me. I finally had the freedom I dreamed of.

But I was still stuck in that 9-to-5 corporate mindset. I was still forcing myself to do things that didn’t align with who I am, because I thought that I should.

Well, all that went to shit around the first week of July when I discovered that I hated health coaching and I didn’t want to be a health coach. I fully support and believe in health coaching 150%. It changed my life and I will always be grateful for my health coaching certification. But the idea of shoulding myself into a career just wasn’t working.

So on July 3, I had a coaching call with a mentor of mine, and she helped me get clear on the fact that I am a writer and a writing coach, and that I absolutely can focus on this and make it my full-time business.

The shell I surrounded myself in for so many years had finally cracked, and light was coming through.

How I Regained My Trust

Sitting in front of me I had quite a mission: I had to completely refocus my business growth efforts, and the first step in that process was beginning to trust myself again.

Not long after that July 3 call I had another call with a good friend of mine who told me that you are never going at this alone. The Universe (God, source energy, whatever you want to call it) is always with us, conspiring on our behalf.

But we have to prove that we truly want what we say we want. And that means coming up against some scary shit.

July has been the most roller coaster month I’ve ever had. It was mostly downs with a few ups, but I’m ending the month so much stronger than I started.

Over the last four weeks I have worked through so many fears and demons and negative voices that were living inside me. I faced loss and breakdowns, but all along the way I have been divinely supported and guided.

The biggest shift I made was choosing to live my life on a moment-to-moment basis, and not to dwell on the past or worry about the future any longer. 

The other thing I did was trust and take action. Every single day I took action toward making my writing coaching business a full-time thing, and I trusted that as long as I kept taking action the universe would lead me to what I wanted.

It’s July 31, and as I sit here writing this blog post, I have a group of new students enrolled in my Story Road Map workshop, which launches August 5; I have a bunch of new one-on-one clients who I’m supporting in writing their books; and I’ve planted a ton of seeds that I know will spout in amazing ways in the coming months.

Today I am so much closer to having the writing coaching business I’ve been dreaming of since I launched Procrastinating Writers back in March of 2008. I’m closer than I’ve ever been, because for the last 31 days I’ve been doing something that I hadn’t been doing for the last year and a half: trusting myself.

Today I trust the person I am. I trust the person I’m becoming. I trust that this person is beautiful, strong, amazing and unstoppable.

I hope someday you can learn to trust yourself enough to jump off the cliff toward what you want, and know that as long as you keep taking action every single day there’s no way in this world you won’t eventually reach the destination you’re aiming for.

Share With Us

Has your faith in yourself ever flailed? How did you regain the trust? 

PS. This new trust and focus has brought a lot of amazing changes to my life and business…. changes that I’ll be sharing with you in the coming weeks.

3 Replies to “The Declaration of You: Learning To Trust the Process”

  1. Great post Jen!

    I particularly like the part of the story where you realized you didn’t want to BE a health coach even though you loved BEING coached. Avoiding the “shoulds”. I am in the middle of a big rebuild for the same reason.

    The following is vague, on purpose. I swear this isn’t a pitch or planted post. I hate that crap. Bear with me a moment:

    I repaired my own health in a supposedly impossible fashion and learned incredibly valuable information along the way. I found resources and people doing work in this area who helped me to help myself.

    So I went on to write a book about my life and lessons, became a public speaker, started a huge blog, wrote three more books, and eventually became a coach in my area.

    And I began to hate it all.

    People could not duplicate my success. They were missing the one thing I had within me – my personal strength – which I could not put into them. This turned out to be even more important than all the tools and resources combined.

    I also grew frustrated when people wouldn’t do as I taught them. Or when they had less than stellar results or none at all, doing exactly what I had done. I couldn’t figure it out.

    I eventually came to realize that above fact. Some strength I had was what enabled my system to work so well on me. I could not help people with that but I felt driven to try.

    The business was not growing much at all after three years, despite my massive work efforts. And I began disliking the people it drew my way. Not that I’m evil or an ass but we simply couldn’t help each other.

    On top of all that, it’s a terribly dark problem and I found that continually reliving it, in order to help others, was keeping me anchored to a past I’d soon rather forget. I needed to move on to maintain all I had built.

    But I felt this need to give back; to help others out there who may be in as deep a hole as I was. No hope. No options. All pain. I actually prevented some suicides and I did manage to repair a few lives that were seemingly beyond hope. But the effort I was putting forth and the stress it was causing, combined with the low rate of return, was simply not worth it.

    I have since decided to rework this material to appeal to a broader audience and tangentially make it clear that if you have that same issue that I originally had, my material will handle it nicely. IF you have what it takes to follow through.

    But what a freeing moment when I understood I no longer had to pursue a path I didn’t enjoy, was beginning to hate, and one that was not meeting my needs as a person, father, husband, etc.

    I’m still rebuilding my gig. But it feels fantastic to not do something because I feel I “should”.

    Truly awesome to see someone writing about this! And I love your style!

    Take care,

    Ken

    P.S. Jonathan Mead led me here and it’s with his help that I plan on taking the next step.

    1. Wow Ken!! What a story!! It’s amazing that you could spend so much time building something just to find out you hate it, right? You totally said it right–it’s freeing to finally STOP shoulding ourselves and do things because we want to! I’m so glad you enjoyed the article. And Jonathan Mead is amazing–he totally changed my life and I attribute finally quitting my job to him and his programs (Trailblazer especially). Good luck with everything and please keep in touch! –jen

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