This week I share the details behind the second of the seven turning points during which my upcoming book from Hay House/Balboa Press, Choose Your Energy: Change Your Life, gained significant manifestation momentum. To refresh your memory, here’s a summary of the seven turning points.
The first was enrolling in a life coaching certification program offered by the Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching (iPEC) in September 2010. The second was launching my first blog in October 2010. The third was beginning to write my clients’ stories of transformation in August 2011. The fourth was enrolling in Christine Kloser’s 2012 Transformational Author Experience in May 2012. The fifth was a combination writing retreat and vacation in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and the South Jersey Shore in July 2012. The sixth was finding New Dawn Center for Spiritual Living in Aurora, Colorado, in November 2012. The seventh was a three-week writing retreat in January 2013, during which I completed the manuscript.
The common denominator was a process of baby steps through which I embraced and transformed fear so that I might step further into my calling to foster hope and personal transcendence through the power of unconditional self-love.
Turning Point 2
Ever the persistent midwife and undeterred by my increased coaching certification workload, my friend and marketing professional, Barbara Kay Escher, continued pushing me to write my book. Using the Julie and Julia movie as evidence for how easy book writing can be, Barbara shifted her tactics to considering blogging as the path to publishing.
There was just one problem. I didn’t do blogs. Didn’t host them, contribute to them, read them—heck, I didn’t even subscribe to any. At the time, I perceived bloggers as two types of people:
- self-absorbed egomaniacs who felt compelled to force themselves on the rest of the world or
- pitiful, shy people who only felt safe interacting with humankind anonymously.
I, of course, didn’t want to see myself as a member of either group. In addition, I had two other problems with blogging:
- Some people write nasty, vile comments in response to blogs. I didn’t want to help propagate any more intolerance and unkindness in the world. We already get plenty of that from political talk shows.
- I was busy and didn’t have time to author or manage anything more than I was already handling.
Yet despite my brilliant arguments against me becoming a blogger, Barbara remained committed to getting me over the hurdle. One day, deeply enmeshed in the near-daily Barbara blog debate, she said, “I know you. Once you do it, you’re gonna love it.” Clueless as to the source of my resistance, we were both shocked when I responded by beginning to cry. Tears being a classic indicator that a big life lesson was lurking, I began to understand that this wasn’t a mental block; it was a heart block. I centered myself, tapped into my tender, wounded heart, and began sobbing even more frantically, “I’m afraid. I’m afraid. I’m afraid.” There, my friends, is the crux of the matter. There, my friends, is the crux of most of the pain and frustration we create for ourselves. The most offensive four-letter f-word I know: fear.
I wasn’t afraid of helping people spew vile stuff at the Universe. I was afraid I would break again if they spewed it at me. Thanks to my son heading off to college and my husband’s extended out-of-town job assignment, I had become one of those frightened people who was living alone and not interacting with humanity much. What life and Carole King had taught me to that point was that people were dangerous: “They’ll hurt you. They’ll desert you. They’ll take your soul if you let them. So don’t you let them.”
Not one to give up easily, Barbara persisted by suggesting I start with a private by-invitation-only blog reserved for my nearest and dearest. Intrigued, I stopped crying. On the morning of October 9, 2010, thanks to Barbara’s perseverance, my renewed courage, and the ease of setting up a WordPress blog site, I awoke and published my first private blog post. Barbara was right; I did love it. So much so that I published my second post just two hours later, when I also took the site from private to public. That’s me: in for a penny, in for a pound.
I refer to the first thirteen posts as the Starter Blog. Much like the tablespoon of starter culture that spawns a large new batch of homemade yogurt, those thirteen initial posts set in motion a process that would ultimately yield an outcome far grander than I could ever have imagined. I published no posts from mid-March 2011 until the end of June 2012, utterly consumed as I was by defining my signature life coaching approach, building my practice, serving my clients, and drafting this book. By June 30, 2012, once I was well into writing the book, I began blogging more succinctly and regularly. To subscribe to email notification of new weekly posts, visit tiny.cc/djwblog to sign up in the sidebar of my blog site.
You may access the thirteen original, highly sporadic blog posts that launched this book by visiting tiny.cc/djwstarterblog. The entries are in reverse chronological order. To read them in chronological order starting with the earliest entry, just begin at the bottom of the list and work your way up. These posts are living proof that writing from the heart with imperfect grammar can open the floodgates to serving the highest good.
Each of us has a personal story of transformation: our unique path from victim to victory, from breakdown to breakthrough. Every time you share your own story with others, you fan the flames of possibility in another’s heart. You touch countless lives with hope through the ripple effect you set in motion when you share your story with each person you meet. How might you broaden the reach of your message today and every day? The world is longing to hear from you.
So what happened? The Universe loved me enough to keep pushing me outside my comfort zone. In a moment of grace, when I faced my fear, stopped resisting, and opened my broken heart to a new possibility, I fell in love again, this time with blogging. On that day, I knew how I would begin to write my book. I would do it in baby steps, one blog post at a time.
One of my favorite movies of all time is What About Bob? The film is about the transformative archetypal journey of the hero: the lesson that no matter how broken we are, with love and compassion, a dash of courage, a pound of commitment, and a sense of humor, we can do anything. We can learn and grow into happier, healthier people. Every one of us can find deep peace, lasting joy, and meaningful relationships. We do this through a lifetime of never-ending baby steps. Bless his heart, Bob baby steps his way all over the transformative Universe. Each time he pushes past his current limits to try something new, he is delighted. After his first sailing adventure (for which they had to tie him to the mast to get him to go along), he exclaimed to all he met, “I’m a sailor! I sail!”
On the day I published my first blog post, my world expanded yet again. I proclaimed to the Universe with every ounce of the Bob joy in me, “I’m a blogger! I blog!”
There’s an old joke about a man in a flood who prays to God to save him. A rowboat passes by, but the man won’t take it; he says he’s waiting for God to save him. A speedboat, same response. Finally a helicopter, no dice. The man finally drowns. When he arrives at the pearly gates, he tells Saint Peter he wants an audience with God right away because he has a bone to pick with Him. Saint Peter obliges, and seconds later, the man stands before God. He rants, he raves, he accuses God of abandoning him: “I prayed for you to save me, and you did nothing. You call yourself God?” With gentle forbearance and a wry smile, God replies, “Fred, who do you think sent the rowboat, the speedboat, and the helicopter?”
We ask for the things we claim to want in our lives, and then we fight them because we’re frightened by the new responsibility or because they don’t arrive in the precise form we had in mind. Blogging was my “rowboat” to writing this book, touching more lives, and loving every minute of it.
In next week’s blog, I’ll share the third and fourth turning points, with the fifth and sixth coming the week after that.
In addition to publishing the book, Hay House/Balboa Press will also be leading a global publicity campaign on my behalf during which they will promote the book for the first twelve weeks after its release to 5,000 media outlets around the world. They will also provide a video book trailer, promote the book to the 500,000 followers via their newsletter, promote the book at two of their “I Can Do It” conferences, and send a film crew to my home to shoot a video press release of me talking about the book. I’ll even be interviewed for my own episode of Hay House Radio online. The journey of writing and publishing my first book continues to expand and transform my life every day. Lots of opportunity to practice deep breathing and follow Kathy Mattea’s advice, “Spread your wings, close your eyes and always trust your cape!”