A woman I spoke to recently said she wanted to write a book because she’s a speaker and more and more she’s seeing that the people who get booked onstage are authors.
It makes sense, doesn’t it? Promoters want to fill seats, and a person with a book is a bigger draw than someone who simply claims they are an expert.
Most of the people who join my writing programs want to write a book to further their business. And a book is a powerful tool for that. But it doesn’t end there. It’s also a powerful tool for transformation. You see, folks assume that the biggest challenge will be getting their words down on paper. But that’s not the biggest challenge, and there are ways to make the writing process simple.
The biggest challenge is really the level of confidence and commitment it takes to step up to the plate and become an author.
What I’ve noticed over time is that for many people it means facing down decades — or maybe even lifetimes — of insecurity, fear of failure, lack of validation, and the possibility of being a exposed as a fraud.
It feels safer to keep your head tucked and not attract attention. When I lived in Japan there was a famous saying, “The nail that sticks up gets hammered down.” (Yes, I did get hammered down in Japan, but I came back up.)
We have tamer versions of that in the United State to keep us in our places — sayings such as, “Don’t think so much of yourself,” and “Pride goes before a fall.”
Not very encouraging, are they?
So it takes a lot of courage to buck the system, stand up for yourself and proclaim that, yes, you do have something worth saying and sharing.
And the beauty of doing that isn’t just that you get to express yourself. It’s that once you break through the invisible barriers holding you back, the next steps of the journey seem less formidable as you take them on one by one.
You may even come to enjoy the challenges, even if you complain at first. The bumps in the road start to be seen merely as threshhold guardians placed there to test your mettle so that some day you can lead others past them.
And that’s the real joy in making the journey — being able to show others the way and make their “wasteland” flourish.
Writing a book is a major milestone on that journey and for many people, the next big step.
You’re at the bottom of the mountain, and it may seem impossible to climb it. But you start, and at some point you notice that you’re starting to pass others. You probably don’t acknowledge your progress and may just pass them off as the slow pokes. But after a while you notice that you’re starting to keep pace with others — even the people you used to look up to. You used to wonder how they got where they did and now you’re there yourself. You may even wonder, “How did I get here?” Or you may be too busy just staying on the path to even ask that question.
So you keep going, and at some point, through the clouds, you see the top of the mountain. You’re getting nearer and nearer. You’re not there yet, but you know you’re going to make it. And just that knowledge makes you realize that if you could make it this far, anything is possible.
In a healing school I went to, one of my teachers called this process “transgradient,” as in “transgradient healing.” It’s like starting at the bottom of a mountain in a desert where it’s hot. You climb and climb until at some point you notice it’s starting to get cold and you have to put on a sweater. You don’t even realize how far you’ve come, except that the cold tells you you’ve climbed pretty high. And you can’t even pinpoint the place where the shift took place. You just know things are different.
It’s that way in life, in healing, and in business. Nothing seems to be happening. You might even think you’re going backwards and get discouraged until suddenly something pops.
And it’s like that when you write a book. You probably won’t be an overnight sensation (although it’s pretty exciting, anyway.) Life goes on and you keep working. But at some point you look back and see how far you’ve come, and you know how important it was that you became an author.
It’s not just the increased media opportunities and stage invites, either. Something has happened to you as a person.
I have a confession to make: I didn’t take myself seriously until I had a book under my belt. And I didn’t think other people took me seriously, either. And I didn’t even know I felt that way until I had the book.
Your belief about yourself is what matters. And half the time (or more like 99.9% of the time) we don’t even know what our beliefs are. We just think that’s the way it is and don’t realize we’ve been living in a trace state — one that was handed to us at birth and perpetuated by our families, schools, religions, societies and chosen television channels. And they don’t know they’re living in a trance, either.
There’s a way out of it, fortunately. I hope to go into it in more depth in a class in the near future. Meantime, one of the best ways to begin breaking the trance and your own glass ceiling is to write that book you’ve had on the back burner.
I know so many people who are waiting to start theirs. It’s like they’re waiting for permission or for everything to be in place.
Things will never all be in place, as all of my successful authors will tell you. There never will a “perfect” time when you’ve got it all together and you don’t have to work, deal with family obligations, health issues, money, or your own insecurities. You just have to take the plunge.
Believe me, I know what it’s like to feel as if there’s not enough time. And that’s one of the many reasons why I’ve created a weekend where people can write their books. So they can actually do it, reap the rewards, and have no excuses!
Having a book opened so many doors for me. One of the biggest doors it opened was into a whole new level of confidence. I had thought that I was fairly confident, but after walking through all the doors a book has taken me through, I realize now that I wasn’t confident at all before. Just brave, curious, and adventures. Not truly confident.
And that’s just one piece of the pie that writing a book delivers. It’s a pretty yummy experience.
My next book-writing weekend is coming up very soon — April 20, 21 and 22. If you’re thinking about joining, my advice is do it now. Don’t just assume that this program will be going on forever. Things happen. You just never know…
Case in point: I had to cancel my next Bali Triple Goddess Magic Writing Journey because I got called up for jury duty at exactly the same time. And they absolutely would not let me off since I’d already postponed it for my last retreat.
There was so much time and effort involved in making and cancelling all those hotel and airline reservations that I’m not even sure when the next retreat will be. Luckily no one was massively inconvenienced, except me. But it made me think that the next time I go to Bali it might be just to write a book and chill out!
So take opportunities when they present themselves, because you can never be sure whether they will come again. Here is the link to read about the next Instant Author Solution April 20, 21 and 22. I hope you sign up. If you don’t, you’re leaving money and opportunities on the table. https://jillhendrickson.com/instant-author-solution/