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Author mindset and a green eyed monster named jealousy

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Things are EXACTLY as they appear to be

June 24, 2021-In about a week we’ll be all wrapped up with our theme this month which is Author Mindset! I hope you’ve enjoyed the content this far and that you’ll continue to join us for more tips, resources, and information.

Today we’re talking about something that is very important for author mindset and that is…our outward appearance. Now, I know you may be thinking that perhaps I’m being shallow or that it’s what’s on the inside that counts (that’s 90% of it!) but what you project and portray on the outside is just as important to your success!

The truth is, as humans we make snap, subconscious judgements whether we mean to or not. Let’s say that you walked into a Publishing company for an interview and the interviewer looked like they just rolled out of bed; wrinkled clothing, chipped nails, unbrushed hair, and they looked as if they haven’t slept in five nights-what would you think? Be honest with yourself. You’d probably think, this person doesn’t look like they have it together, so what does this say about the company as a whole? It looks like they can’t be bothered and that they don’t respect themselves.

Contrast that with someone who makes an effort toward looking their best! No one is perfect and we all have our flaws, but first impressions matter. How you present yourself to the world is a direct indication of how you feel about your self on the inside. I know that for me personally I always feel better, think better, act better, and I’m more confident when I look my best.

As an author you will be thrust into the public eye, whether you like it or not; book signings, school visits, public speaking, and events put you in front of people, there are no two ways about it. Your appearance is part of the whole package.

Here are three ways that you can look and feel your best that will get you into the right author mindset to take on the world!

1. Put on your best outfit. This is the clothing choice that makes you feel confident, able, and unstoppable.

2. Accessorize. Whether it’s a favourite watch, stunning scarf, or a fabulous piece of statement jewelry, accessories can elevate any outfit. Plus, if it’s an heirloom piece, you’ll employ the energy of the person who gave it to you!

3. Details. Wrinkled clothes, chipped or dirty nails, and clothing covered in animal hair or lint do nothing to help your confidence. People notice small details like fallen hems and missing buttons, so be sure to give a once or twice over to your reflection in the mirror.

When I was a kid someone very close to me gave me the advice, “Don’t walk into a bank looking like you need a loan, walk into it looking like you own the place.” This advice has stuck with me for life! This means that you should have the mentality, mindset, and energy that elevates you not only in your eyes, but in other people’s as well.

Everything starts internally and as authors need to put our best foot forward. When we respect ourselves, look respectful, and are confident in our appearance and abilities, other people have no choice but to believe it too.

YOU are your author brand, what message do you want to convey?

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No One is Coming to Save You

June 23, 2021-Author mindset is our the this month and today we’ll be focusing on accountability. Gulp, I know this can be a touchy subject, but I wouldn’t be doing anyone any favours if I skipped this topic.

There is ONE thing that separates successful people from unsuccessful people and that is ACCOUNTABILITY. Accountability means that you take 100% responsibility for your writing life and the results you’re getting.

How many times have you heard, “It’s not my fault that I couldn’t find the submission guidelines,” or “I didn’t know that there were author shows going on,” or “I can’t be responsible for low sales, the market is saturated.” I’m here to tell you-YES IT IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY. If it’s not yours than whose is it? The neighbour’s? The publisher’s? The milkman’s? Stop trying to blame other people for the crappy results you’ve been getting!

Something magical happens when we take 100% accountability as authors; we grow and our results change for the better! If we’re brave enough to say, “The buck stops with me,” or “I’m the one in the driver’s seat,” we can transform our mind, life, and career.

It’s easy to blame others for our lack of success and failures, but the truth is that deep down we know it’s no ones fault but our own. As soon as we take responsibility for our writing lives, things begin to change! There’s a freedom in being honest with ourselves and knowing that we are in charge of our results.

A strong author mindset focuses on how to grow, improve, and get results while acknowledging where we went wrong and planning to do better. Nothing will change in your life if you’re not accountable for your actions, decisions, and outcomes.

Ask yourself if you’ve been 100% accountable for your success and failures thus far, or if you’ve been hiding behind the excuse that someone else is in charge of your life, dreams, and writing goals. It’s time to step up your game and take responsibility for the good and the bad. That’s the only way to change.

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Business not Busyness

June 22, 2021-Author mindset is our theme this month and today we’re talking about “busyness”. We all know that being busy does not always translate to being productive; in fact, being busy is often just a front for procrastinating on the big tasks.

When I ask fellow authors about how things are going, more often than not they’ll say something along the lines of, “I’m so busy it’s not even funny,” or “It’s insanity as usual!” I know what those statements are code for because at one time, I was saying the exact same thing.

The truth is the only reason why we feel like we’re barely keeping our heads above water or that we’re drowning in our work is because we’re focusing on too many small tasks that do not bring us the type of results that we’re looking for! Authors are creative people who are prone to experiencing overwhelm and I find that when this happens, we turn away from the big projects and hard work to focus on meaningless day to day things that can quite simply and effectively be delegated.

LEVERAGE is your best friend as an author. But what does leverage mean? It means that you’re using your resources in such a manner to free up your time so that you can focus on what’s most important!

With a positive author mindset, you know that time and results are important to your ongoing success, so why not help yourself turn down the burner on stress? Here are three ways that you can use leverage to get excellent results in your writing life:

1. Delegate. The best bosses know how to delegate. This means that we match the right person to the job that is most likely to benefit from their skill set. For example, if you’re a self-published author you could delegate your sales numbers, taxes, accounts receivable and payable to an accountant. This is one high stress item off your plate that frees up mental and physical space so that you can do things that are more pressing.

2. Outsource. As an author are you wasting your time editing your own work? Maybe you have a great idea for a book but you don’t have time to write it? Do you need help with your schedule? Hire an editor or ghostwriter or virtual assistant to help out! Outsource anything you can so that you can focus on creating more opportunities for your writing life and expanding your network.

3. Use resources available. A lot of authors work from home and this carries a whole other host of responsibilities. We see the laundry piling up, the dishes in the sink, and the empty fridge. These unfinished, need-to-do tasks play havoc with our heads and we find ourselves washing dishes instead of writing. There are plenty of resources available to take some pressure off your plate (and clean them!). Use things like grocery delivery service, or a housekeeper to come in and clean once a week, or a student that’s looking for volunteer hours or back to school cash to mow the lawn. There are plenty of resources out there that can help you free up time to focus on your writing life.

You may think that all of this sounds expensive; there are initial costs involved, but leverage is used to free up your time so that you can do things that bring you more money and time. YOU ARE WORTH IT! Authors struggle with this undeserving mindset because they feel like they don’t deserve to hire any help or that they can’t afford it. Look at your budget as an author and find out where your money can be best spent! Make an investment in yourself and your future by focusing on the big picture, big moves, and big results.

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Courageous Question

June 21, 2021– I hope that everyone had a nice weekend, and as we slip back into our theme of Author Mindset this month, I trust that you’re getting and using valuable information from our posts!

To switch things up a bit, I decided that we should dip into our reader questions that have been sent to me over the years. Here’s a perfect one that goes with everything that we’ve been talking about!

I’m a new author who self-published a children’s book. I’ve got a couple of book signings lined up, and I’m not going to lie, I’m scared to death about interacting with the public. I thought that I would write my book and that the hard part would be over. I’m learning quickly that I have to do the sales part too. I’m an accountant, so I keep to myself in my job, but that seems impossible if I want to sell my book. Can you give me any tips on how to be more courageous when doing my signing? 

I love this question for two reasons: 1) Because many authors struggle with this 2) Because it’s an easy fix.

There are three tips on how authors can be more courageous during interactions with the public and their readers!

  1. Employ your Alter Ego. I’ve said this before, and I’ll repeat it! Using your alter ego (or who you want to be) can work wonders for your confidence. I do this all the time, and when I step into a meeting for venture capital or work with a new client, I imagine myself as my alter ego. What would they do? How would they act? How would they speak? How would they dress? How would they look at the situation? What solutions would they come up with. If you picture yourself as one of your heroes or someone you admire or aspire to be, it can take the pressure off. Think of yourself as an actor; you’re playing the role of a confident, well-spoken author who loves being in the spotlight.
  2. Be ridiculous. This is really fun, and it works for me when I’m shaking in my designer boots and have to do a speaking engagement in front of people, whether it be a sales presentation, class, or book signing; I imagine the worst-case scenario: What if while I’m speaking I slip and fall and I grab onto the book table, a mountain of books fall on me, I can’t get up, and the building catches fire all while splitting my pants open and spilling my coffee? I think of the visual, and I can’t help but smile and relax because the picture I just painted is ridiculous. When you use this strategy, you inject humour into the situation, and before you know it, you’ll be smiling. Plus, none of the scenarios you reviewed are probable, so if that’s the worst-case scenario, anything better than that is fabulous.
  3. Ensure-ance. If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. We’ve all heard that dozens of times, and it still rings true. The best thing you can do to boost your confidence as an author is to ensure that you’re prepared! Prepare what you’re going to say, prepare your table, prepare your handouts, prepare what you’ll wear and so on. The more prepared you are, the more confident you’ll be when you don’t have to worry about trivial things that can steal your focus.

Remember, people celebrate authors, literacy, and books, so never be afraid that you’re won’t be well received. Make a connection with your readers, have fun, and relax. View the bigger picture! How lucky are you to be able to share your work with the world?

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Intend It

June 18, 2021– First, we’d like to wish a very Happy Birthday today to, Michael (my favourite person EVER) and my sister, Meghan (my other favourite person ever, June 20)! May all of your wishes come true and may you be as happy as you make others ❤️.

As we continue to talk about author mindset this month, I hope that you’re putting the work in on getting your mind right! We’re talking about intention today and how it’s a catalyst for growth, change, and making your writing dreams come true.

What is intention? An intention is defined as an aim, target, plan, objective, and goal. But did you know that it also means deliberateness, calculation, and forethought?

So many wonderful things have happened in my writing life because they were my intention. Some of them include: Working with the best and brightest, being a guest speaker at a massive superconference, being a best selling author, winning best local author in my city, being published multiple times globally for books and magazines, attending educational seminars around the world about writing and publishing, increasing my income by 50%, and working with ideal clients who share the same values as we do at Pandamonium.

Thoughts lead to feelings. Feelings lead to intentions. Intentions lead to action. Action leads to realization of the thought. Whatever you think about consistently (good or not so good) is what will happen and show up in your writing life. Let’s explore each of these in detail by using a case study.

  1. Thoughts-What you think of most of the time happens.
  2. Feelings-What you feel about your thoughts happens.
  3. Intentions-What your intentions are, lay the groundwork for what you want.
  4. Actions-What actions you take toward your intentions make things happen.
  5. Realization-This is the completion of the intention. This is the realization that what you thought about, felt, intended, and acted upon has come to fruition.

Emilia was an author who came to me for some coaching. She had struggled over the years with author confidence and mindset, and she said that no matter how hard she tried, she felt like she was simply spinning her wheels. I put together a plan for her, and this is how our conversation led to an author mindset roadmap of sorts.

L: What do you spend most of your time thinking about when it comes to being an author?

E: That I’m not good enough and that my work isn’t good enough, that’s why I keep getting rejected.

L: How does that make you feel?

E: Lousy, defeated, like bursting into tears.

L: What were some of your intentions when you set out to be an author?

E: I wanted to sell a ton of books, be recognized by my peers as a great writer, and be a best seller.

L: What actions did you take to meet your intentions?

E: I submitted a couple of manuscripts and queries, but I got rejected, so I shelved everything from there and haven’t been able to write since.

L: What if I told you that if you started over and changed your mindset from the get-go, that this time you would have a different result, would you be interested?

E: Of course!

L: It all begins internally. We just need to change your focus and the voice in your head.

Emilia worked with me for four months. She had such a huge change in her author mindset that things began to manifest in her writing life, and she surpassed her original goals. Her mindset allowed her to see things differently; not everything worked out perfectly and on schedule, but her life did a 180. The things that didn’t work out, she had a completely different perspective on. Once we changed her thoughts, it was a chain reaction.

Your thoughts, feelings, intentions, and actions all need to be working together! Don’t contradict your intentions by not having the feeling, thought, or actions to match. Take a look at your own author roadmap, is it pointed in the direction of success?

We’ve got a brand new course coming soon just for authors! It’s called The Author Mindset Blueprint. Email to reserve your spot and get more information!

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June 17, 2021-As we continue our theme of author mindset this month, let’s look at the power of yet in this epic YouTube video! with Carol Dweck. This will translate to your writing life as an author by reminding yourself through every challenge-not yet!

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Destroy It.

June 16, 2021– We’re talking about author mindset this month and today’s post is all about FEAR and how to destroy it as an author. Let’s dive in!

Fear is something that shrinks us, it keeps our world small, it’s a liar. Don’t get me wrong, there are things in this world that are scary, but they shouldn’t be debilitating. The best way to get over your fear is to jump right in. Usually, it’s fear of the unknown that scares us the most! That’s why we don’t take chances in our writing life, we don’t advance our career as authors, and we find ourselves watching opportunities slip through our fingers from the sidelines rather than actively participating.

As an author, there have been times where I’ve been afraid too. Like the time I lost my reading and writing skills for an amount of time because of a concussion. Or the time where I was chosen to be a guest speaker at a superconference and the room was packed with my peers and other professionals who were waiting to hear my presentation. I’ve been afraid lots of times, but each time I overcame those fears by jumping in with two feet, sticking to the plan, and doing what needed to be done no matter how difficult it was. I also stick to a rule in my life and that is whatever I’m afraid of, I run toward. Fear is an indicator of what we need to do next.  I think the key to destroying my fears was threefold:

  1. Preparation– I prepared as much as I possibly could. Whether it was practicing my speech a hundred times in the weeks before I was due to present, or taking an active approach to my recovery, I did what I needed to do to feel prepared for what was next. When we have a plan, we feel more confident, able, and assured.
  2. Self-Belief-One thing I’ve always believed in is myself and my higher purpose. Once you realize that you’re here for a reason that is so much bigger than yourself every excuse of why you can’t do something or why you’re afraid, falls away. You must believe in yourself and your abilities and know that no matter what comes your way, that you’ll meet it and rise above it.
  3. Perseverance– Anyone who knows me knows that I’m stubborn to a fault. I’m one of the most stubborn people on the planet and when someone tells me that I can’t do something, I do it and take pictures. Perseverance and practice are what help melt fears away. When you stick with something and hold it in your mind and visualize your success, the fears get smaller and eventually disappear completely. You’re not going to hit it out of the park on your first at bat, it takes practice, perseverance, and patience. Be stubborn in your goals, but flexible in your approach. Fear hates persistence.

As an author, what are you most afraid of? Write down your biggest fears and ways that you can destroy them. ACTION is the way to success and overcoming any obstacle. Action destroys fears and gives you the confidence to realize your goals. Run toward your fears, not away from them and watch your writing life transform.