Sometimes… life has a way of kicking you in the patute in such a manner that you react, almost simultaneously, in two different ways. The first is that you are really proud of your tenacity and the other is this not so subtle silent query of, “Why in the hey does life have to be so hard?” Well, the truth is that you arrived at that tenacity because life sometimes is difficult! As an author, you might even be more keenly aware of these difficulties and how to express their impact on your own life, by sharing the potentially life-changing stories with an awaiting world!
Have you ever had one of those weeks – not just one day – but a series of days where things seemed so upside down you didn’t know quite what to do, other than persevere in order to simply survive? When you were done, what exactly did you feel? Many people experience a series of rather trying events, and ask, “Why does all this have to happen to me, back to back, stacking one thing on top of another, and why now?” The stories you tell help others to realize that nearly everyone has these things occur, in varying degrees, perhaps, but they happen, nonetheless. The tales you spin provide hope that no one is totally alone in the world of “What the hey just happened here!”
At the end of the day, it is never really so much about what happened to you as how you managed to deal with it. The sharing of events, in whatever format, fills the wish that there were some kind of little life instruction book where we could find the perfect answer for things that just don’t quite make sense in our lives.
Life’s Little Instruction Book…
How much would the world benefit from having access to suggestions, observations, and reminders that would make getting through those somewhat “snarky” days a little less difficult? Many people read to find peace within turmoil, enlightment outside the dark moments, and assurance when in a place of unrest. Imagine the life-changing gift of H. Jackson Brown who published such a book for his son who was going away to college. It was filled with little “quotables” he felt his son might rely upon in his absence. They included inspiration, clarity and direction:
- Be brave. Even if you’re not, pretend to be. No one can tell the difference.
- Think big thoughts, but relish small pleasures.
- Learn to listen. Opportunity sometimes knocks softly.
- Never deprive someone of hope; it might be all they have.
Are your “stories” the kind that would be better served as a complete Life Operations Manual? Imagine how you would weave your magic so the reader could easily look up, “Why did my week have to be turned upside down by something totally outside the realm of my control; something I didn’t really do wrong?” What empowerment you could provide by crafting a response that would set the reader’s heart at peace, lift their spirits and send them back out to brave the world with renewed vigor!
Have you ever had a friend jokingly prompt you, when life comes zinging past like a baseball (hit by Johnathan Broxton at Citizen’s Bank Park, May 14, 2009 at 100 mph!) that… “You would have no luck at all if you didn’t have bad luck!” Fortunately, as an author, you can teach your readers how to play into that – not buy into it. Think of the empowerment as an author to be able to show the difference in how people respond when they do get zingers whipping past them:
- Tell your story in such a way they can assess what they may have done to have prompted the event. Sometimes the reader needs to acknowledge they are the culprit, and if that is the case, how to recognize that and figure out how not to have a repeat! Teach them to create a page of their own for a personal Life’s Little Instruction Book.
- You might also impart the wisdom to acknowledge that there was no culpability on their part at all, but that by some magical, even if not enjoyable, turn of life, the events can be used to learn a very valuable life lesson; also something that can be included in a Life’s Little Instruction Book!
Authors tend to be more sensitive to life and more aware of things around them, and thus, can bring a wealth of wisdom to the world just by taking time to create “lessons” from simple, day to day events or frustrations. For example: You may have spent the better part of your week, working on converting everything to a new computer and completing upgrades to writing/publishing software program.
You probably expected it to take place in a couple of hours… Not! You experienced first one problem and then another. How you would tell that story, however, would be how to recognize life’s frustrations, not as problems, per se, but life lessons that can be included in a Life’s Little Instruction Book! For example:
- Don’t try to get around paying a fair and equitable price for any software – you might just wind up with a bootlegged copy that gets you nothing more than wasted time, frustration, lost money, humiliation and a half dozen other unsavory things!
- Don’t budget time around something in which you are not extremely experienced! You may not be a novice at the tasks involved, but the ‘”unknown” factors can, and most likely will become your reality
- Don’t assume… in this scenario, that a program upgrade will be a seamless, piece of cake! Your story can be filled with how your spent the better part of two days “managing” this mistaken perception and how you increased your knowledge, stayed the course, and learned to REALLY appreciate the patience those “techie” types must have.
Your passion, as an author, might be to leave the world with empowering messages, through your stories – such as that each time that fast ball comes flying by – it isn’t necessary to duck, or be afraid of being… but to strike out and hit it with all the passion and power possible! Not only will you come away with a renewed sense of pride in your tenacity, you will have a few more stories to include in your own Life’s Little Instruction Book.
When you think about publishing a “legacy message” keep in mind that you do more that write; you have the rich privilege of subtly coaching or mentoring other people, sharing your experiences so others can accelerate their success. You have the perfect forum to reveal how all the less than pleasant events in your life that shake up your thinking and test your abilities help you write your own Life’s Little Instruction Book (or complete Life Operations Manual). That is the power that ultimately comes to you! Through your writing and sharing with other, you gain from each experience, you grow, you adapt, you adjust your thinking and if you take the time to make note of these things – not just survive them, you will be able to go back to them as a point of reference the next time you face “one of those days!”
Take a few minutes and think about something recently that really kicked your backside. Ask yourself if you should accept responsibility, and if so – what you will do differently next time. Also ask yourself if you were not the catalyst, and if so, what really valuable lesson you learned that will have given you more power over life’s events. Then… consider journaling those acts of courage and create a story for your own Life’s Little Instruction Book that you might pass on to your children or grandchildren… put your Voice in Print!