How committed are you to growing your brand? Getting recognition for your work? Finishing your book? Attracting the right clients and media attention? Fully I’m guessing you will say. I too consider myself a very ‘committed’ person, once I make a decision to do something I usually see it through…however I read a blog post recently on the Greatist website by Susie Moore, a British confidence expert who is based in the US, which gave me one of those AHA moments, and made me take a long hard look at myself.
Her post is all about committing wholeheartedly to something, she starts the blog by describing going out to dinner with a friend who quit sugar, if she teases her and says …want a bite of my dessert?, her friend says ‘No thanks’ with ease and indifference. Susie asks, is it hard for her to turn it down every time? NO, because she is fully committed. Susie argues that its our ‘well meaning 90 per cent effort’ that is exhausting, it consumes energy without producing results, and we fall short of our potential
She quotes Jack Canfield, author of The Success Principles, who says “99 percent is a b*tch. 100 percent is a breeze.”
I started to think about how this could relate to me, and I realized that there are areas in my life where I am 100 per cent committed. I don’t use synthetic chemical skincare, beauty products and wherever possible (and husband and teenage kids not withstanding) I avoid chemical cleaning and laundry products. I am committed to constantly researching great new products and services to blog about and I am totally committed to my #changemaker clients – helping them become more visible in the media.
There’s other stuff too of course, but it got me thinking about my own goals. I wrote a novel a couple of years ago, and despite having written five non fiction books including a Number One Amazon Best Seller Imperfectly Natural Woman, Imperfectly Natural Woman: Getting Life Right the Natural Way
I found myself floundering and nervous as to whether its any good and how to get it away. If you had asked me a few weeks ago, Am I committed to getting my novel published? I’d have said, of course I want ti more than anything….sort of…. Why then have I wasted a year without approaching a good literary agent or really making in-roads into publishing? If I search my soul I know its fear, yep the inner critic doing its thing. Ironically I bang on about this when I speak at events, I remind people who have a talent, a passion, an opportunity to make a difference, NOT to allow their inner critic to determine how small they stay, or how much they grow.
I often quote Julia Cameron the fabulous author of The Artists Way,The Artist’s Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity I had the pleasure of working with her at a Hay House conference, and she told the audience of wannabee authors, to listen attentively and notice the inner voice when it tells you that you arent good enough, that you can’t possibly attract an agent or publishing deal, that you will never finish your manuscript…listen and the reply (inwardly probably best) ‘Thank you for sharing…now f**k off!’
I’ve been though phases over the last year to trying to get my book away, but not following up, I tried one agent (v big time) and was refused so instead of picking myself up and starting again, I allowed myself to wallow in rejection (bonkers right? Didn’t JK Rowling have a load of rejections? Julia Cameron herself had 42 rejections for her debut novel and then a publishing bidding war on the 43rd attempt) I waited and waited and procrastinated about the edit, about how much time I could commit to it, about getting started on my next one, (I have lots of ideas) The truth is it has taken a lot of my time and energy ’90-percenting’ it, perhaps it will flow more easily if I finally give it 100 per cent of my attention.
Susie suggests we identify what needs 100 per cent of our attention, from a habit you need to quit altogether to a business goal, maybe even the need to declutter and detox from certain ‘friends;
Then we must put the effort in and commit. Do what it takes and don’t look back, its tough, but in tbe long run easier than constantly thinking about the problem and agonising over it. Then she recommends that we repeat the same process with the new priority, because once something is properly finished we have a sense of completion and feel ready for the next thing.
I am going to make a few changes, the truth is I wear a lot of hats, I can’t just do ‘one thing’ I know I know I know that’s advised but it just ain’t me, I can however decide which of my many ‘projects’ are taking too much of my mental energy without getting anywhere, then I will decide if they are really worth committing 100 per cent to, if not …out they go.
What are you currently 90 percenting? if like me there are several things, take stock, choose what you really want for your life, your work your success and go for it 100 per cent, so that whether you work on it today, or tomorrow, or regularly is just not a variable. You’re committed. End of.
Check out Susie Moore’s website and Susie if you read this, thanks for the kick up the butt!