Ok. I’ve been writing and editing and polishing the same story for three years now…So sue me!
I’m a …
perfecshun…purfection … perfectionist.
Yeah right! You guys know me better than that considering the typos, spelling errors, grammer faux-pas, etc. that come up in my writing. I’m more of a ‘go-for-the-impact’ kinda girl than a ‘get-it-perfect’ chick.
So…why the hell have I been holding onto this work-in-progress for so damn long?
Dana Vollmer wasn’t afraid. Not after a diagnosis of a life threatening heart condition that could kill her if she continued swimming. Not after training for 4 years and not making the 2008 USA swim team headed to Beijing. She didnt sit down and say ‘f$#% it’.
No, she used her challenges to change up her game plan…
Vollmer used her fear to make her try harder, try something different, persevere until she succeeded – 4 years later…with a Gold and world record in the women’s butterfly in London.
“I set myself up to win these last few years…Because I made myself believe I could go that fast.”
She is an amazing young woman who didn’t let failure or fear get in the way of her goals.
- Steadfastness in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success.
I’d say three years holding on to a manuscript is a ‘delay in achieving success’, wouldnt you? My own fault of course.
Other things I’m afraid of? Ooooh…the list is so freaking long…
- afraid of losing those I love, afraid of making people angry with me, afraid of making a fool of myself, afraid of not being accepted…(hmmm…see a pattern here?)
And the list could go on, but those are probably the biggies. Rejection being my theme.
So, how do I overcome this obstacle? How do I overcome my fears of rejection?
“Fears are educated into us, and can, if we wish, be educated out.”
Karl Augustus Menninger
I suppose fear is a relative thing. It can be either big or small depending on what you compare it to. A fear of skydiving is different when compared to tasting some cultural delicacy like chocolate covered beetles vs. awaiting a lab report for a malignancy. But no matter the fear…it is real to the one who owns it.
Our fears can often hold us back from our goals. Especially those fears that are born of internal crap as opposed to falling from the sky when your parachute malfunctions. Those fears that threaten who you are, who you want to be, how you feel about yourself.
“There are two basic motivating forces: fear and love. When we are afraid, we pull back from life. When we are in love, we open to all that life has to offer with passion, excitement, and acceptance.” John Lennon
I want to be a successful writer. Well, it ain’t gonna happen if I don’t submit my work to someone who can make that happen for me! What the hell can I do about it?
“You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.’ You must do the thing you think you cannot do.”
Ellie was so right here. What’s the worst that can happen? I fail? Some person hates my writing? Some person gives me ideas to improve my writing? Somebody actually likes my writing?
I’ll never know until I face my fear.
So here’s what I’m gonna do:
1. IDENTIFY my fear. Rejection. Which would wound my delicate pride!!! But as in anything…a wound heals and makes me stronger…better…smarter!
2. COMMIT TO A SCHEDULE to succeed…a SPECIFIC plan (and stick to it!) I’m gonna write every morning (after my healthy breakfast and workout!) for 2 hours. That means I’ll have to get up at 5:00am! But I CAN DO THAT! Dana Vollmer does that to succeed! We have to sacrifice to succeed. I CAN DO IT! I’ll have to go to bed earlier and set…(gulp!) the alarm! I will not make silly excuses that set me up for failure.
3. USE MY RESOURCES…my POSITIVE-MINDED resources (Yooooo-Hoooooooo!!! Misty?????) to help me face my fear. I’ll surround myself with uplifting souls who make me feel good about myself. The ones who support me and encourage me. Not those who roll their eyes and project their negativity on my life. I don’t have time for that! I have a NY Times Bestseller’s list to get on!
4. GET ORGANIZED. Yup…I said it…you heard it…I CAN DO IT! If I clean out the clutter. I’ll have more space in my life to be efficient and creative. Efficiency will help lead me to my goal.
5. COMMIT. I need to commit to my purpose. Without following through on my committment to finish my WIP and get it out there I’ll NEVER reach my goal. Without following through on my committment I will always feel this sense of failure, this sense of dissapointment in myself for having so little self-discipline.
6. DOWNSIZE for Time management. Time to prioritize and get rid of those pesky little time-suckers. Hate to say it, but…gotta eliminate some of the time-sucking creeping I do on facebook, those pampered chef parties I attend just to make your friends happy, words with friends, Judge Judy(just love her!), …all those things that are not necessary and take me away from having time to work toward my goal! Time to tell the friends and family about the NEW schedule. That way they will understand when I say, ‘sorry…I’m busy right now.’
So, there it is. MY plan to reach my goal. A goal I’ve been dreaming of for years. A goal I have been afraid to reach for because I’m petrified of rejection.
Well SCREW YOU rejection! I can handle you! I can use you like some shitty old step ladder to climb back up again, to get better, to believe in myself, to succeed. Just like Olympic swimmer Dana Vollmer said, “It took missing my goal in 2008 to say…’there has to be a better way to go about this.’ I had to decide I loved it to continue on.”
So friends, what is that goal you’ve been afraid to tackle? What name can you put on that fear that is keeping you back from that one goal you’d love to finally accomplish? I don’t care if that goal is cleaning out the junk drawer in you kitchen or making the 2016 Olympic Bobsled team. Make a plan and ‘GET ‘ER DONE’!
“…. Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.”
PS…Here’s promised pics from my Ten Things You Need to Do List!