Tuesday, May 29

What To Do BEFORE You Give Up On Your Dreams

Gideon Stevens writes:
We’ve all been there, right? Nothing seems to be working, you’re not seeing any progress, and everyone, including you, has lost faith that you can do it. Maybe it’s time to give up.

Okay, maybe it is. Life isn’t always rainbows and unicorns. Maybe you’re going in the wrong direction. Maybe your dream is not realistic. Maybe you’ve changed your mind, or you now see clearly how much effort is required, and you’re not willing to make a sacrifice that large. That’s okay. You gave it a shot, and you’ve learned from the experience. Maybe it’s time to move on. I’ll bet those grapes were sour anyway.

Or maybe – just maybe – you’re having a bad day. Maybe you still want it as much as you ever did, and you’re just feeling hopeless right now. So before you give up:

Ten Things To do Before You Give Up On Your Dreams

1. Put the gun down.

I’m being dramatic, but I’m serious too. If things have gotten that bad – if you’ve written the note, loaded the bullet, and are about to give up on everything – please stop. Put the gun down. Call 911 now. No problem is ever solved by ending your life. I read once about the small handful of people who have jumped off the Golden Gate Bridge and survived. They all said pretty much the same thing:
“As I was falling, I realized that I did not have any problems that I could not solve, except for one – and that was that I had just jumped off the Golden Gate Bridge!”
On a far less serious note, perhaps the “gun” in question is the “delete” key. You’ve been working on your blog forever, and so far the only readers you have are your mom and your cat, and your mom stopped reading two weeks ago. Your finger hovers over the delete key. The thoughts going through your head are all negative. “I’ll never get more readers. No one is going to buy my book. I’m not good enough, smart enough, cute enough,” and so on.

When you’re being overwhelmed by negative thoughts, it is not a good time to make a decision, especially one that is irrevocable. Put the gun down. Turn the computer off. Walk away.

2. Have lunch.

Remember HALT. That stands for Hungry, Angry, Lonely, or Tired. Ask yourself if you’re feeling one of those. Emotions are delicate things, and can be influenced by outside forces. Take a nap, and you may wake up with renewed determination.

3. Call someone.

Get on the phone with a friend. Tell them up front “I need your help. I’m feeling like this just isn’t ever going to work and I need you to be my cheerleader. Tell me I can do it. Tell me not to give up.” They will. You’ll feel better. They might even tell you something that will help.

4. Do something else for a while.

Look, you’re a smart person, and smart people crave novelty. You might just need a break. Don’t delete anything, just start something new. Work at that for a little while, then come back to your main project.

5. Reconsider the goal.

If you’re about to give up, maybe your goal is unrealistic. Shooting for the stars is wonderful, as long as you’re not overwhelmed. If you’re not seeing progress, try setting TINY goals. I want to sell ONE copy of my book. Reaching that goal, set the next goal: I want to sell another copy, this time to someone who is not a relative or friend. Setting a small goal can keep you going, and if you keep going long enough, one day you’ll look up and find that you’ve arrived.
To read the rest of Gideon's excellent article, click here: 10 Things To Do Before You Give Up On Your Dreams – Guest Post by Gideon Stevens

We've all been there, down in the dumps because nothing seems to be working. Sometimes it seems as though it's never going to ever get better even though we know, rationally, that one day it probably will.

Indie authors are lucky to be part of a large, supportive, growing community. Take advantage of this. Write about your experiences, write about how you're feeling. You might be surprised how many people feel just like you. Strangely, that sort of realization can be very comforting. :)

Here's hoping you had a good lunch. ;)


Thanks to @DarinCalhoun for the link.

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