Monday, February 9, 2009

Act As If...

"Act as if everything you desire is already here…treat yourself as if you already are what you’d like to become.” –Wayne Dyer.

What does it mean to be a success? How is such a phenomenon measured?

Here is my definition:

To push just a little bit harder, to strive just a little bit longer, and to reach just a little bit farther than you first thought possible.

That's it. Every accomplishment seems daunting at first. Tying your shoes seemed impossible when your itsy-bitsy brain first contemplated the tangle of strings in your chubby little fingers. *grin*

Yet for the most part, we forget the secret of success and become overwhelmed by what we THINK we can't do. We're forgetting two very simple facts. We learn through visualization. We are motivated by our desires.

"If you want a quality, act as if you had it." –William James

Returning now to our toddler self with the daunting task of tying a shoe. How did this get accomplished? Someone showed us the magic method and we Pictured Our Success. Yup. We visualized the process. We put a picture in our head and mimicked the action. Even more, we had a burning desire to succeed. Nothing would deter us. We never even considered the idea of failure. Right?

Now (theoretically) we're all grown-up. We're struggling with queries and deadlines and synopsis and rewrites and plot points and Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh, My!

Sometimes the process is overwhelming and we're all tempted to give up. How DO people manage to tie their shoes without even thinking about it? The secret of success in our youth is the same secret today. Whether struggling to stand upright, wobble our way across the room, and tie our shoes, or write a chapter, send out queries, and meet our deadlines, we begin with desire.

"Desire is the starting point of all achievement, not a hope, not a wish, but a keen pulsating desire which transcends everything." –Napoleon Hill

Not a wimpy-ass desire either. Your heart has to beat with the same kind of fervent passion that motivated you to get off your butt and toddle in the first place. Want it, feel it, breathe it!

I Am A Successful WRITER!

Desire and Visualization.

Visualization is more than mumbling a few affirmations. We're not tossing salt to ward off bad luck here. We're using the power of our minds to create reality.

"Formulate and stamp indelibly on your mind a mental picture of yourself as succeeding. Hold this picture tenaciously. Never permit it to fade. Your mind will seek to develop the picture... Do not build up obstacles in your imagination." –Norman Vincent Peale

This may seem like mumbo-jumbo but here's a fact. The most successful people in history have known and utilized this fact: What you Believe is What you Create.

And more… If you want to Be A Success, Act Like A Success.

Don't play the "if only" game. If only I had a contract (or an agent or a guaranteed path) THEN I would…

Nuh-uh. Don't go there. Act As If You Are A Success. That's the secret successful people have utilized for eons.

"Create a definite plan for carrying out your desire and begin at once, whether you are ready or not, to put this plan into action." –Napoleon Hill

Put your plan into action NOW. Why? Because You Are A Success. The sooner you act like a success, the sooner your reality will reflect this FACT.

So… this week, let's experiment. Let's spend the week approaching each of our goals with a new perspective. We write not because we hope to be or want to be but because We Are Successful.

We Are Successful Writers.

Say it with me: I Am A Successful Writer. My Life Reflects My Success. My Actions Reflect My Success. I Take Action BECAUSE I Am A Success.

"Action is a great restorer and builder of confidence. Inaction is not only the result, but the cause, of fear. Perhaps the action you take will be successful; perhaps different action or adjustments will have to follow. But any action is better than no action at all." –Norman Vincent Peale

And one more:

"Cherish your visions and your dreams as they are the children of your soul, the blueprints of your ultimate achievements." –Napoleon Hill

Let's set some goals!


Continue first round of SIDEKICKS edits. 65 pages last week!
Continue to flesh out WIP. Three chapters last week!
Weekly essay to post.

Now it's your turn. Any goals to share? How about personal experiences acting "as if"?

"Act as if. Moment to moment to moment. And, sooner than you think you won't be acting anymore." –Wayne Dyer

Have a fabulous and productive week! Go-go-GO!

Smiles to you,
--Chiron

10 comments:

Rita St. Claire said...

Hi, Chiron!

I love this post! Actually, without being intentional about it, for a long time I've realized that this is how I conduct my life, so I know what you've said here is TRUE! For some reason, I've always been able to visualize myself as being a "success" at whatever I wanted at the time. Some years ago I realized that every REALLY IMPORTANT dream I ever had in my life had come true! Isn't that an incredible statement?

So, though I'm not published in novel-length form yet, I'm working on the assumption that I have no reason to believe this dream will not come true either. And I say this in all modesty, to support the assertion that visualization works. I KNOW it does.

Here's an example. When I was a little girl, I loved the Strauss waltz "Tales from the Vienna Woods." I used to imagine myself wearing a long white dress, dancing with a tall, dark, and handsome man who would wear white tie and tails. When I was about seven, I remember trying to make up dance steps with my cousin, writing them down on paper--what I later realized was a childish form of choreography.

Well, many years later, when I was in my mid thirties, I met my husband. He was an expert ballroom dancer, so naturally, to be able to dance with him, I took ballroom lessons. I got quite involved with dance, and eventually he and I were in a recital together. We actually performed a Viennese waltz to the "Tales of the Vienna Woods," that music I'd dreamed of dancing to in childhood.

I even wore a long, flowing, white gown, and he wore white tie and tails. We even have a video of it!

Later I realized that my childhood dream had come true, right under my nose. I also realized that somewhere in the recesses of my mind I'd forever kept an image of myself dancing in that long white dress in a the arms of a handsome man. While at the time, I didn't think of this as visualization of myself as a success, that's exactly what it was. And I also realize somewhere in my depths, although I wouldn't say this to anyone, I had no doubt this dream would one day be a reality.

And, by the way, my husband does happen to be tall and dark. And, in my book (which is what matters in a marriage) VERY handsome.

I use this experience as my model of how visualization and success work. Of course, I didn't sit on my tushie and say "if only." I worked hard taking lessons to learn to dance, and I also took the risk of performing in public, dancing with a man who is a much more skilled dancer than I am. (My DH is actually like Fred Astaire, yikes!)

I tell this story in hopes of supporting what you've just said, also hoping that it will be one more story to inspire other writers.

Onward and upward! Let's keep at it! Let's work hard and visualize. We're all successes ALREADY!

Thanks so much for this post, Chiron!

P.S. Oh, and by the way, in case anyone is interested in thinking about this a little more, I have a few blog entries about this on my website. Just get into the site and click on "Days of Dreams Come True." According to me (and now according to you, Chiron, I see,) we are at this very moment living our days of dreams come true!

Celia Yeary said...
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Celia Yeary said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Celia Yeary said...

Chiron--I wrote a brilliant comment--and it was posted twice--right before my very eyes. I deleted one, but it deleted both. Just know that your ideas and encouragements helped me so much--I'm editing my second novel, and all of a sudden, I feel inadequate, and well, quite stupid.The first round of edits went smoothly, then --BAM! The ms was shredded, and I felt inadequate, and well, stupid. I thought I had turned a corner--but I have not. Stay with me--I'll get there.. Celia

Christine London said...

Hi Chiron,
You have translated what the successful throughout history have known, what the very popular "Secret" has flooded the airways and bookstores: If you think you can or you think you can't...you're right.
There is incredible power and influence in attitude. It is what makes up the nucleus of charisma and it is the backbone of attracting the people, places and things your need to "make it so".
Personally, 'it' is what has enabled me to attend Hollywood events meant for insiders only, to get photographs that have been published on international fan sites, to have my blog quoted by industry professionals. I act as though I belong wherever I find myself. I dress the part, I move with shoulder back and chin up. I speak with authority and look people in the eye. What I don't know, I research. In short---act like you are the expert, the star, the author, the woman of the hour and you will be.
This brings to mind a quote from the most influential erotic womens fiction writer of the twentieth century, Anais Ninn--a woman ahead of her time and a true trailblazer.

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage."

So "just do it" Pretend--- be an actress--act the part. Success is preparation meeting opportunity. There is no shortage of opportunity---no need for a scarcity mentality. The universe is generous with plenty of good stuff for us all.

Regards,
Christine London
www.christinelondon.com

Chiron said...

Rita,

That's a wonderful story! A good example too, since we do visualize quite naturally as children until "reason" steps in and tries to convince us that Magic isn't real. Hah!

Thanks for sharing your delightful, magical tale. *smile* I will definitely pop over to your blog and check it out!

Chiron said...

Celia, I know exactly how your feel. My editor is patient and supportive, but working with her I realize how far I have to go! There are times when the fear nips at my heels too.

Hang in there and try (after the stinging stops) to trust. It will come together and the lessons learned will serve to make you a better writer.

If ever you need a boost, drop me a line, okay?

Smiles to you, dear friend,
Chiron

Chiron said...

Christine,

Thanks for your amazing comment. One of my all time favorite quotes is one you shared: If you think you can or you can't, you're right.

It's so true that people (and the universe) will respond to Who You Think You Are.

Anais Ninn said it best, and courage is definitely what we need to embrace.

"Just Do It."

Thanks again, Christine for your thoughtful post!

Best regards,
Chiron

Sandy said...

Chiron,

Lovely post. I'm always inspired by you. As I am an optimist, I always expect to make it to where I intend to go. Grin.

Hugs,
Sandy

Rita St. Claire said...

CHIRON, you make a great point in this comment and also in your original blog post. Yes, in childhood we naturally visualize. As you point out, it's so important to keep that natural instinct going.

And, SANDY, I do think optimism is the key. I'm a cockeyed optimist, too.

CHRISTINE, I loved your comment! Yes, there's no need for a scarcity mentality--I truly believe that. Regarding being an actress, yes! I often feel that writing fiction is kinda like being an actor; except in the writing, we play all the parts. Thus, if we can write, we can act, in a way. And that's a huge advantage when we seek to "pretend" we're already there.

I have to say I love my writer persona, nom de plume and all. I feel like I'm already there.