Friday, November 5, 2010

Dive In and Start Swimming

I once had the privilege of hearing Nora Roberts speak at the Romance Writers of America National Conference. She was the keynote luncheon speaker, and she gave an "author chat" later that day, too. Her books are too many to count and she is very dedicated to her career.

What's her secret? Just write.

What's her message to people who give excuses and stay on the sidelines? Get in the pool and start swimming.

This message is true for anyone pursuing any activity or goal. If you want to do something and achieve something, please don't sit around and make excuses for not doing it. This is just another way of avoiding the possibility of failure. We've all been there. We've all failed. The trick is to move beyond the failure and keep on trying.

Here's my tip for the week: Whenever you hear yourself saying "I'd like to do this BUT ...." turn around the phrase and say, "Even though this situation exists, I am going to push myself to work toward my goal anyway."

Here's some wonderful excuses I've heard whenever I hear people say they'd like to write a book, or they could write a book, or how easy it is to write a book if only....

They'd do what I've done if only they had enough time. Well we've already discussed the time issue here. They'd do what I've done if only they didn't have a day job. I've got friends who work full time and write and raise families. Somehow they manage to make the time. They'd do what I've done if only they had no health problems, no people tugging for their attention, no family members sick, no... no... no...

Hmmmm. I see a pattern here. A pattern punctuated by one word. The word "no" is ringing in my ears. If only? If only is another way of saying "no." "But" is another way of saying "no."

Turn this around. Tell yourself "yes." Yes, I will make the time. I will set aside a place for my dream. I will go for it. I will push through the litany of words that hold me back from achieving my true potential. I will seek out the joy of pursuing my dream despite the possibility of failure. I will push through the disappointments and letdowns until I emerge victorious.

Fabulous Friday Blog Roll

Okay, Listen Here (not just because the recipes posted were amazing--great group of inspiring ladies)
The Character Therapist (great info about real life behaviors we can incorporate into our characters)
The Edited Life (Gwen has a sidebar about Scrivener that is very helpful)
Seekerville (this blog has a lot of great advice and inspirational stories)
Don't Pet Me, I'm Writing (just super funny)

Debut Novel Contest Comment Winner is Anne Gallagher!!


Gwen Hernandez said...

Yep, you just have to say "yes" if it really matters to you. I think we've covered this before, but if something is really important to you, you can find the time. Everything is just a "nice to have" that you're not serious about.

Living deliberately takes some effort.

Great reminder, Christine. Thanks for the mention!

Christine said...

Hi Gwen: You're right. I've written about this before and will continue to do so because I think sometimes people need to learn about how to change their behavior more than once. The more we hear it, the more we'll incorporate the changes we need to make to get the job done.

And you're welcome for the mention. Your blog rocks!


Anonymous said...

It's so true. For years, I used that excuse until I just did it. I hear people say this all the time. The fact is - it's not important enough to them. If something is important you find a way to do it.

Christine said...

Kellie: I agree. It has to become important. One area I am trying to make more of a priority is exercising. This week I walked 4 times. I joined a new gym which opens on Monday (very new gym) and I can't wait to start taking the workout classes. I decided that taking the classes would make me accountable. I'll still walk, but as the weather cools off I must make a new commitment to another way of staying healthy.

Making something important puts it on the front burner. I think Gwen said it well: living life with intention. Plan and implement your life decisions.

Anne Gallagher said...

Wow, Christine, this is just so crazy fantastic. I've been winning all over the place the last few days. I guess I'll send you my address. Or you can tell me what to do at piedmontwriter at gmail dot com.

Christine said...

Anne, this is just a wonderful week for you so enjoy it!! I'll email you and get the info to Kieran Kramer as well.

Congratulations again on your request for a full. Your hard work is paying off!!


Kieran said...


I heard Debbie Macomber say she listened to a lot of inspirational speakers on tape--people like Zig Ziglar and Brian Tracy. So I bought some and started listening every day when I walked our dogs. And it was in that time period that I really got to the next level of writing and submitting. Hearing positive messages over and over and OVER truly has an effect on most people's behavior. I know it did on mine!

Another great blog post. Never, ever, ever give up (thanks, Winston Churchill).

Have a great weekend!

Kieran :>)

Christine said...

Kieran: I see you and know your story and I am inspired. You have shown me that the dream is attainable. But even more than being published, the dream is to pursue my passion with joy. Your interview showed me that it is in the journey that we are given joy.

Keep going! You will go FAR!!!!


Wendy S Marcus said...

Hi Christine!
I wanted to share a great quote I read was on the coach's page for my son's varsity soccer team. Of course I can't get back on the page to see who said it but it goes something like: I've heard good things come to those who wait. But I believe good things come to those who work. It really resonated with me!

Christine said...

Wendy: I love that quote! How true!! And anyone who has revised knows the truth about the hard work!!


Deb said...

Great blog, Christine! Thank you.

Christine said...

Hi Deb: I'm glad you liked the blog. I hope you are more productive and focused this week as you pursue your dreams and goals.