Who Are You When You’re At Your Best?
Last week, I attended a business event. There were all sorts of seminars and workshops about social media and tax and marketing and… the sort of things you’d expect at a business event, really.
The final seminar of the day was entitled “How to grow your business” and was led by Craig Goldblatt. I’d never heard of him before, but the write-up on the timetable we were given described him as someone who had given over 500 inspirational keynote presentations all over the world. I was looking forward to a talk about growing one’s business, probably a few slides, a handy quote. I was hoping it wouldn’t last too long as the previous seminar had overrun, and I’d not had a chance to grab a coffee.
As soon as he started talking, I realised this was not the talk I was expecting. There was no slick Powerpoint presentation. No pre-prepared soundbytes. Instead, a man holding a marker pen and occasionally jotting nots on a flip chart gave the most impassioned talk I’ve ever seen/heard. It actually made me quite emotional in places, and that’s definitely not something you expect from a talk on business.
Craig began by telling us that there are basically only two fears in life: either “I’m not enough” or “I’m not loved.” Everything we feel on a day to day basis falls into one of these categories. He went on to ask us some very probing questions, many of which I found myself unable to answer. In fact, his questions made me feel quite uncomfortable.
One of the questions was:
I found it really hard to answer, if I’m honest. I’m still not sure I know the answer. I think it has something to do with writing, though.
A few weeks ago on my weekly train journey, I began to draft a book. By the time I got back to town, I had an entire draft written down. I rushed home and began typing on my laptop, and two hours literally flew by. Before I knew it, it was time to collect S from nursery.
A few days later, I took myself off to a coffee shop for breakfast and spent three solid hours writing my book. Then my battery began to die, so I went home… where I plugged it in, and… well, I don’t recall what I did for the rest of the day – but it wasn’t writing. In fact, I’ve not even opened the file since that day several weeks ago.
So many of us find it easy to while away our time on pointless tasks; we work in jobs we hate because we have to pay the bills, and we never do what we truly want to do with our lives. A large part of Craig Goldblatt’s talk was about being authentic, about figuring out what your purpose is, and then doing everything you can to live that life.
Writing makes me feel like I’m doing what I was supposed to do. When I get into a writing flow, I can do it for hours without coming up for air. And now I have a business where I can get paid to write, and I’m still wasting my time messing around with pointless, stupid things.
I walked out of that talk determined to put aside dedicated time for writing, and to use it to actually write a book and publish it.
my question to you now, is: Who are you when you’re at your best? What lights you up and makes you feel like you were born to do this? And why aren’t you doing it?
I'm definitely at my happiest - and most confident - when I'm writing. The sad thing is I know I'm a victim of the 'reality trap'. As te main bread-winner in our household and with three kids, it's too big a risk for me to give up my job. Some of that is lack of confidence and fear, definitely, but equally the odds of me earning even half of what I currently do as a writer are pretty slim. Am I hiding away out of fear of failure? Possibly. But it's a tough call to make when you know that your family is depending on you. If I was still single or we were childless, I'd have been much more liely to consider it. Now, with three kids? Gulp. Tim recently posted...My Sunday Photo: Big brother, little sister
I know exactly what you mean Tim! Also I find that while I love to write, and when I have something I'm passionate about can write for hours... I can't even contemplate writing fiction to save my life - and being a fiction writer seems to be the only way writers make proper money these days. I'm lucky to be able to earn money from writing - but I don't earn a huge amount in comparison to others. I like to think that one day I'll be struck by inspiration, write a masterpiece and be able to retire on the profits! One day...
Love writing, love being in the zone. BUT there is a lot of time around it...and after it to be filled. I think if I only feel I am ''me'' when I'm writing, then I'm missing out on a lot of mes who enjoy other things. I'd hate to resent times when I couldn't write. Ad yeds, it would be nice t earn enough to write full time...but you low, as the writer of 2 series of books now, the pressure to produce book a year is mighty! I think I am me all the time.....and even when it's the boring bit o f being me, I'm trying to be the best me that I can. Does that make sense? carol hedges recently posted...Square Eyes (Adventures of L-Plate Gran)