Over the years, I’ve told a lot of friends that I want to write books.
I always viewed it as this privileged achievement that I would work my way up to.
First, I generate a strong economic engine in my business, which will afford me more time and space, and THAT was when I could write my first book.
And when I’m writing my first book, THAT is when I could really be happy.
Every month, or maybe even every week, I’d try and map out how I’d get there.
If I take the way my business is growing and performing now and try to extrapolate it…how long until I can really start to sink my teeth into that book?
How long until I can really be happy?
All the while, I had some really smart friends tell me, “Why don’t you just start now?”
Carve out a little time here and there, do it slowly over time…
Of course! That’s the obvious answer. It’s how I approach every other project I take on.
But I would reject it.
Oh no. I can’t do that. I don’t even know what the book is about yet! First I need more time to read more and research what it is I want to write about…
Once it became obvious that I was holding myself back for no reason, I had to create a new reason for why I wasn’t starting on this thing I supposedly cared so much about.
I had to create a new reason to hold my happiness hostage.
Of course, that’s all a load of crap.
There’s no reason that I couldn’t start working on a book now. And if the bottleneck was exploratory reading and research, there’s no reason that I couldn’t be doing that in small measures now, either.
But I had held that story for so long.
For so long, I told myself that my ultimate aspirations and potential was in writing books.
And if I was to attempt that aspiration, and fail or lose interest, I would have to let that story go.
I would have to let go of this identity and this supposed path that I’ve been holding.
I don’t think I’m alone here.
When we really get excited about ideas, and we imagine that we have what it takes to do the thing or make that idea real, we sometimes put more energy into talking about and protecting that idea than in actually pursuing it.
It would hurt too much to find out that it’s not actually what we want. Or worse – that we aren’t good enough to live up to our own expectations.
All the while, we hold our happiness hostage.
Well, the good news is I actually do aspire to be a writer.
And even better news – a large part of my time is spent writing already.
Once I realized that – once I realized that I’m already living the way I life I was aspiring to, and that a book is just one medium for housing that writing, I loved my life even more.
I was no longer holding that happiness hostage.
And you know what? I bet that by enjoying the writing I’m already doing, the book will come in its own time.