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I have forever been looking “out there” for what was within me the entire time, or as one of my mentors told me, “What you are looking for, you are looking with.”
I have been writing since the age of four (I learned to read at age two) but whenever my mother would catch me writing, she would confiscate the papers and throw them away along with the admonishment that writers are losers and I would “never be a writer!”
It has been said, “Follow your passion and the money will follow,” and I believe that. However, how many of you feel, or have felt like me, that you cannot be self-supporting by doing what you love.That has been an on and off process for me using a myriad of tools to get in touch with why that is.
I am doing what I love since I retired from my real career but not making any money and I have had to take a serious look at why? It felt like I have always been simply chasing moonbeams, falling stars and rainbows looking for something but not knowing what. I just kept writing. One morning – before dawn – one of those moonbeams struck me upside the head with another memory. It is definitely not a new memory but one which has always been just hanging out with me. It is a sentence I frequently heard from my mother: “Writers are losers.”
Well, of course I am not making any money! I drank the kool-aid; I bought the idea that writers are losers and cannot earn a living. That is why for most of my life, I had to have a real career to support myself while I continued to write on the side.
Of course my work does not sell! I actually sell a few of my first published book every month, but not enough to earn a living. I want to earn a living doing what I love. It never occurred to me until recently I still had unfinished business with my mother’s attempts to “save” me. I have been secretly blaming others even though I know I create my own life.
Years ago I realized my mother was only trying to protect me because of her own experience. Her father was a writer and never made enough money to even feed his family and divorced my grandmother when my mother was two. She saw that I was “just like my grandfather” and that scared her. She was willing to go to any lengths to keep me from writing and the subsequent misery and failure.
Because I had been actively writing, I honestly believed I was over it. However, the part about her father never making any money I apparently did not deal with and it has remained in my subconscious.
It has been gnawing away at my gray matter without my realizing it. Wow. I actually did become exactly like my grandfather – writing for free. I am once again reminded of the power of our subconscious. I have studied and written much on the subject and yet, still fall victim it its power. Wow.
I have moved past many of the lies I was taught in early childhood which controlled my thoughts and actions and here is my process.
1) I recognize the existence of an obstacle in my subconscious when I am doing what I love, but keep hitting walls and hear myself blaming others. Or, blaming lack of resources. If only I had ….. If only the economy …. If only s/he would….. etc., etc.
2) I get out the pen and paper (yes, the old fashioned way). The reason I like to handwrite this part of the process is because, for me, there is a spiritual component to it, or a connection between my heart and my hand. I have tried to cheat on this part of the process telling myself that I can use the computer this time because I have figured it out already. However, words come out on the paper that were never in my head. This is a key component to the process I call, uncovering, discovering and discarding. Using my current example of writers are losers, I would write about when did I first hear that and keep digging until the name of the person responsible for brainwashing me pops up on paper. In my case I had uncovered that part several years ago (2012 to be exact) which allowed me to let others see my writing. I did not realize until recently I still was holding on to the buried belief writers cannot make money. Frankly, this is a common belief in the creative world and one reason artists of all mediums often hire brokers to sell their work.
3) After I have uncovered and discovered the source of my block to being who I want to be, I continue to write positive affirmations. Positive affirmation are written as if I already have what I want. For example, “I am a prolific writer and I am well compensated financially for my work.”
4) Say written affirmations (I write them on 3 x 5 cards) out loud 5 – 7 times a day until I know the lie is discarded. How do I know? In the example I have given here, I will start getting offers of money for my writing. A note of clarification about this part: I may want to rest on my laurels while saying affirmations, knowing the phone will ring. However, in my experience, it has been more about getting it out there. The affirmations give me clarity and correct actions are revealed to me. In my case it is writing. I write every day because I love to write. But I have to put it out, wherever I can.
Whatever it is that you love – just do it! Put it out there and keep affirming you are successful and well compensated for your many gifts and talents. One day, it will happen. Someone will contact you and want more – for money.
Our subconscious controls our thoughts and actions. In my published book, I write about the lies which are hiding in “The Attic” of our minds and drive us to prove to them (mostly parents) they were right. Regardless, of our feelings toward our parents, we want to please them by making them right.
As a result, I have lived all these years lost in the adventure of chasing what might be, what could be, IF only I could catch a moonbeam or a falling star. Right – IF only.