Remarkable entrepreneur Tim Ferris has an excellent blog post today about the myths that surround so called ‘successful’ people – which in this context are the star leaders in fields such as business and sports.
One thing Tim said has stayed with me; “They’re weird, neurotic creatures who do big things DESPITE lots of self-defeating habits and self-talk.”
Self-defeating habits and limiting self-talk and self-sabotaging belief systems.
I don’t know a single author who is not plagued by precisely those thoughts.
Some, such as myself, suffer from chronic procrastination which I am working through on a daily basis through a personal process I have come up with that works for me. Those 18 books have been achieved, as Tim says, DESPITE the self-defeating doubts and fears.
But the real shame is that many fine writers surrender to the self doubt and informed pessimism and crash and burn and give up. Because it is just TOO HARD.
Hard? For non writers this seems a ridiculous concept. How can sitting on your comfy sofa scribbling away in the warmth be hard?
And they are right in one respect. My father was a coal miner in the days when they had ponies working down the mines to drag out the coal. Compared to that hard labour which was not only dangerous but physically destroying, writing for a living is a true luxury and one for which I am sincerely grateful.
But there are some days when the next person who asks me how many books I have ‘churned out’ is likely to get kicked in the shins with the pointy toe of my designer shoe.
Why? Because I CARE about my work. I care desperately. And that makes me scared.
Time for a big bucket of ‘stop whining and get on with it’ to be dumped over my healthy head. Something like this for example.