How to Become the Boss of Your Ideas
In the end, everything that I have to say today, only you decide. Only you decide. Are your ideas worth it? Are your characters worth it? Are your thoughts worth it? Are your words worth it? I thought for so many years that someone was gonna come and touch me on the head and go, "Yes, you're a writer. "Yes, your ideas are worth it." And even though I had published five books, I had sold hundreds of thousands of copies, I'd done all kinds of media and speaking and stuff, I was still waiting for that. So I decided that the person who could give me that was Oprah. And so I did everything I could to get on Oprah. I had my newsletter people write her letters, I had my PR person, you know, just make all these pitches, I made a vision board (laughs) with Oprah and me on it, I did everything. And one day, the phone rang and it was one of Oprah's producers calling to say "We'd like to have you on the show!" And they said, "We'd like to have you on the show "to help women who are afraid to eat a...
lone "in a restaurant." And right then, I should have said no, but I wanted this so badly, I wasn't listening to my heart, so I said yes and I went on the show. And it wasn't a disaster, but it was far from one of my better media experiences. Not because of Oprah, it was totally because of me. And I got off that set and I remember feeling so deflated. And I went into about a two-year period of not writing and being pretty depressed and pretty lost but I didn't know why. I had no idea, I just thought it was 'cause I didn't get my own segment and she didn't say "I love your work." And it took me a long time to figure it out. And what it was is I wanted Oprah to anoint me. I wanted her to say "You are good enough." I was doing everything that I'm telling you not to do. And when I figured that out, I was talking to a friend and I was telling, kind of figuring this out in a conversation, and I said these words, and every time I say them, like, I sit up taller, right, and my heart beats faster. And that is I only want to choose me. I don't want to be wait, I don't wanna wait to be chosen. I don't wanna want to be chosen, I wanna choose me. So that's really what all of these tools and tips will help you do in really practical ways. And I'd like to reflect for a moment what was most valuable for you out of what we did today because, and maybe write it in your own words, those of you at home, do the same thing, 'cause that'll help you cement the learning and not just be a whole bunch of information. What was most, personally most valuable to you? In your own words, take a moment to write that down. And what will you use starting tomorrow or the next time you write? What will you actually use out of all of these ideas? What will you put into practice? Love this quote from Ray Bradbury, "Start writing more." It will get rid of all of your moods. (laughs) Right? When we're in action, everything I gave you today is about being in action, actually doing the writing, that's where it's at, that's where the energy at, that's where the pleasure's at, that's where the learning is at. And that's where the new story is that you get to choose you. And if you have any questions, you can email me, email@example.com. We'll try to answer them or create a video or a blog post from your questions. May take me a while to get to it, but please send me your questions, if you have any, about what we've covered.
What is it about writing that makes writers constantly question whether they’re REALLY writers? Why are they haunted by the impostor syndrome, unable to recognize their abilities and successes and always living in fear that they’ll be discovered as the frauds that they really are?
One of the primary reasons writers judge themselves so harshly and doubt their legitimacy is that they struggle so mightily to write. They sit at their desks for hours at a time producing nothing. Then they’re racked with guilt because of their lack of productivity.
The key to combating self-doubt as a writer is to write. Teacher, author and personal growth pioneer Jennifer Louden will teach you concrete exercises and techniques to help you overcome your guilt, end procrastination, silence your inner critic, and value your voice and ideas so you can get your work done.
In this class, you’ll learn how to:
- Calm your nervous system so your inner critic can’t hijack you before you’ve even started.
- Practice self-compassion to assuage your guilt.
- Visualize your future readers who are waiting to be changed by your words.
- Find your ideal work style rather than following the advice of others.
- Make clear promises to yourself and set realistic goals.
- Daydream productively so you’re ready to write when you sit down.