In Praise of Transparency
Fantasy is fine... just don't let it hijack your power
Twelve days ago, on July 11, enrollment opened for my first eCourse, Getting Words on the Page.
In those 12 days, 12 people have signed up for the course.
I've shared it with hundreds of people, and a good number of you wonderful people have in turn shared it with your people. So it is fair to presume thousands of people have laid eyes on a post about it.
I'm coming to share this because I think we generally don't reveal the behind-the-scenes realities of life and work and writing and patience and all the things, and it hurts us all by reinforcing a pressure to put forth and/or maintain a certain image and reinforcing stories we tell about other people, and thus ourselves (wherein we usually diminish ourselves and idealize others).
Comparison and projection fester in the absence of transparency.
So, in the first 12 days of my course being live, on average one person has signed up each day.
I will tell you, I had fantasies of hundreds of people signing up on day one. It is not unlike other fantasies – ones I am convinced most of us harbor some or another version of.
Maybe yours is a fantasy of being discovered or rescued. Maybe it's a fantasy of an overnight bestseller, or going viral, or Elizabeth Gilbert or Oprah sharing that your writing/book/course changed her life, or receiving a generous, unexpected gift from a creative benefactor.
All fine and good. We are human! It is so natural to have these fantasies.
If I've learned nothing in my life to date, I've learned this: Little by little letting go of the discovery/rescue fantasies is ultimately awesome. It takes away that nagging, vague sense of powerlessness these fantasies hinge on. It gives you yourself in return, your agency, your voice, your faith, your choices, and your power.
If one person a day signed up for my course for a long time to come, how thrilling!
I often say to clients – if you had just one reader, and you were lamenting this, and then you came face to face with that individual, would you look them in the eyes and say, "Oh, well… it's only… you"?
If you were the one and only person to enroll in my course, I would want to look you in the eyes, with a twinkle and a smile, and say, "Thank you. I hope you love it. I'd love to hear how it goes for you."
It's fine to fantasize. I just don't want fantasy to hijack me. And now, for a few of my favorite reminders:
Slow and steady, friends.
Want to be today's one person to enroll in Getting Words on the Page? Be sure to use the coupon code CREATIVESUMMER to get a 50% discount!
Here's the link:
Have a lovely Sunday,
For weeks, this has been rattling around my head: an alternative to "avoidance" could be "ajoydance." Like, what if we moved toward the thing we don't want to see or deal with? What if in the moving toward, something loosens, once we get through the tight, icky tension of it? What if in unearthing all the things that are there anyway, we get freer? What if limitations are not such a terrible thing after all? What if joy could be found in being that much more honest about the subject at hand, whatever it may be? What if you released that knot of fear? What if you stopped making plans for some imagined time that doesn't exist yet? What if you took "be here now" to heart in whole new ways? What if you paid down your debts and looked up at the sky? What if you didn't try to skip over half the alphabet? What if you reveled in the daily moments instead of asking for grandiose signs? What if you deleted the apps that suck your time into a bottomless black hole? What if you walked to the park instead and sat on a bench and listened to the sounds of splash pad squealing? What if you were to sink your teeth into that ripe peach, that perfect summer day, that sweet out-of-the-blue "I love you" text? What if you smiled? What if you avoided nothing and enjoyed everything, even the hard parts? What if you didn't divide your life into parts? What if you did? What if you reveled in the fight? What if you replaced the word "fight" with "love" since that's why you show up in the first place? What if you let the part of you that wants everything to be perfect and everyone to be happy rest? What if you set it all down? What if you celebrated every single day? What if you stopped avoiding and started ajoyding? What if that is the dance? What if this is the life? What if you said yes to all of these invitations? What if those giant sticky sheets of bare naked numbers covering an entire wall are actually the golden ticket? What if you stopped buying lottery tickets and saw all the ways you've already won? What if you took it one day at a time?