Spring does strange things to people and I’ve been on a cleansing and purging kick. These deep digs turn up funny things. I found a box of rejection slips from lit journals, anthologies, magazines, and various other publications. It’s like I couldn’t take no for an answer. One “yes” every six months kept me going, and a check of any amount just carried me that much further. Getting published in anthologies got me thinking about writing books. I started with a very simple blog, writing five-hundred words a day and not much else but a burning desire to be a writer. It’s hard to believe that was fifteen years ago!
An email commenting on my beautiful website got me thinking. This one mentioned how far this person needed to go to catch up to me. It reminded me when I’d had a similar thought. This author inspired me and intimidated me by cranking out two published books a year, in two separate genres, presenting at conferences internationally, speaking on podcasts, holding webinars and workshops, while keeping a blog and I don’t even know what all. She was on almost a dozen social media platforms. Following her was dizzying enough, but keep up with her? I tried for a little while and soon found myself at a decision-making juncture. I could compare myself to her and make myself crazy or figure out what I needed to do and chart my own path.
What does this mean for you?
It’s hardly reasonable for a high school graduate to look at a CEO and expect to have that station in life handed to them. The CEO put in years to be where they are. But, once upon a time, that the CEO was merely a high school graduate. So was the Olympic athlete, the Black belt master, the author of a NYT best seller, the millionaire.
They all had a day one. And you will have one also, the day you decide you’re going to live differently and aspire to something else. The day you commit to plant the seed and ”whatever it takes” begin watering and nurturing it. When you get to that newly sprouted stage, celebrate! It’s great to look at the trees that have grown steadily over the years some to their full height and be inspired. You shouldn’t feel “less than”, or defeated as long as you keep the perspective that you’re in it for the long haul. If you feel overwhelmed or even doubtful, find a mentor or successful people in your chosen field and ask them about their day one and their setbacks. Ask how they persisted in spite of naysayers and failures. Ask them how long it took. It will strengthen you to know that despite all of it, they still prospered.
You don’t have to be on anyone else’s clock for our success, but you must be diligent in taking some forward action every day. Now I say, “Don’t try to catch up to me, just begin your own journey! Find out what works for you and do that. If you want to do what I did: design your own life!”
The acorn has a long way to go to become the mighty oak, but without the planting, without the watering, without nurturing, it will always be the acorn. But once it takes root, it grows steadily, sending out deep roots while stretching toward the sky. It’s astonishing the progress that can be made if you just persist. Whatever course you choose, just begin. One day you may be the person that inspires others!