My daughter moved home from college over the weekend. She lived in her freshman dorm for eight months and had a great first year. I feel excited about our summer together and it’s good to have her home.
Today I’ve been thinking a lot about trust. Maybe as a first-time writer, parent, or business owner, you can relate to this.
Several years ago I really wanted to write a cookbook. I would schedule time on my calendar to write the table of contents for a book proposal, record a recipe, or even test a recipe. These “scheduled times” show up on my calendar and my brain would say, “Don’t worry about doing this. It won’t matter anyway. Plus it’s a lot of work, and it’s not going to make any difference if you do it just this once. No one will ever know.”
The sad thing is I listened to my brain.
I didn’t create.
I didn’t write.
I did this over and over. There was a time when the work I needed to do for my first cookbook wouldn’t get done, again.
I felt sluggish. I indulged in self-loathing. I didn’t do what I said I was going to do.
Instead of owning up to the truth of what was going on, I excused myself from myself with you’re really busy, feeling tired, or are confused about what to do.
And the more I told myself that I was busy, tired, or confused, the more my world showed me evidence that I was tired, busy, or confused. They cycle continued. I less I showed up for myself, and the less I showed up the fewer tasks related to dreams were accomplished.
Maybe this sounds familiar?
I’d do anything for my kids, and for my clients. I show up for them, on time. I buy them healthy food, cook for them, feed them. I deliver projects to my clients on time, and when I drove my kids around, I delivered them to their activities on time. I don’t expect my kids or clients to be perfect. I help them with kindness and compassion. I commit to them, and for sure I do what I say I’m going to do. A natural result of this is that my kids and my clients trust me.
How come I couldn’t trust me? Why when I scheduled time for myself, I didn’t show up?
After some introspection, I was onto myself.
I could see the gap between where I was and where I wanted to be.
I was in reality over here: making plans to write and create content, but instead, my brain was over there: telling me to do everything for everyone, and telling me I was too tired, confused, or busy for myself.
In order to make permanent changes, the first thing I had to do was decide to become a person who could trust myself. I knew I had it in me, and my decision to grow started everything.
With a shift in my thinking from “it won’t matter if I skip this task” to, “it does matter, let’s spend an hour and get this done” my feelings started to change.
First, I observed my feelings of busy, confused, and tired with some kindness and compassion. I soon understood why I wasn’t showing up for myself. My brain was showing me examples of busyness, confusion, and tiredness. That’s what I thought about, so it provided me with evidence that this was true.
Next, as a result of my observations, I committed to completing all takes I put on my calendar. I changed my self-talk. I told myself I had plenty of time, just like everyone else who is writing books does.
When I put a task on my calendar, I started to show up for my appointments with me. I spent less time thinking about the things I couldn’t do and focused on what I could do. I realized I wasn’t too busy or tired or confused to take the next steps to achieve my dreams; I was stalling and making excuses.
As a result of my decision, a shift in thinking, self-observation of feelings, and my commitment to myself, things started to happen. I found a publisher who wanted to read my proposal. I wrote the proposal. I signed a contract. I was on my way to writing the manuscript for my first cookbook. I’ve come a long way since then. Consistent content creation is one of my strong suits, as is writing cookbooks.
Here’s the irony: This decision, and the shift in my thoughts, actually created time and energy. Instead of sitting around, indulging in “why can’t I get anything done?” or “I don’t feel like doing this”, I produced most results in half the time. I felt more energetic and excited to take time for my tasks. I began to trust myself.
“You can’t teach anyone anything. You can only help them discover it within themselves.” ~Galileo
The process of revealing myself to myself, as well as the development of a relationship with myself, is the foundation of everything I have created ever since. And it all started when I learned to trust me.
When you take time to discover yourself and trust yourself, the sky’s the limit.
What’s stopping you? I can’t wait to see what you create.
Cookbook author, editor, and Culinary Dietitian Maggie Green, RDN, LD coaches first-time cookbook authors during the pre-publication phase of writing a cookbook.
Would you like to write a cookbook, but feel alone in the pre-publication phase of writing?
Are you stuck thinking about your cookbook idea or has you project fizzled?
Do you feel overwhelmed with publishing options and the recipes, photography, and publishing process?
I’ve been there. I know first-hand that there’s not a lot of support for first-time cookbook authors who don’t have an agent or a publisher yet. That’s why I started my work as a cookbook writing coach.
Here are a few resources for you as you venture into the world of cookbook writing:
An 11-point checklist that helps you answer the question, “Am I Ready to Write a Cookbook?”