There is no gray, only black or white – nervous or at peace. You’ll be back and forth in one of those places between now and the retreat. ~Tom Bird
Trust the Process – Really?
Did I really believe when I wrote my last blog post – Write Your Book in 5 Days: Trust the Process – that all was well with my world and would be for the remaining four weeks before the Write Your Book in 5 Days Retreat?
Uh, yes, I really did. I had it all figured out. I knew all I had to do was trust the process and it would be smooth sailing all the way. But something happened this past Sunday morning. My internal dialogue is captured below.
- Doubts coming back. Trust the process.
- Wondering if it’s for real. Trust the process.
- Will I really write a book? Trust the process.
- Do I have anything worthwhile to say? Trust the process.
- Is my time really Your (God’s) time to share more with the world? Trust the process.
- Will I physically be able to manage through the complex regional pain syndrome in my left hand and tendinitis of my right arm? Trust the process.
- Will Tom wish he hadn’t said my physical limitations wouldn’t be an issue? Trust the process.
- Has he dealt with others with issues bigger than mine? Trust the process.
- What if I don’t finish my book there – will I feel like a failure as others celebrate? Trust the process.
- Breathe in. Exhale. Trust the process.
Below are some additional highlights of what has happened in the past two weeks.
Preparatory Webinar 1: June 1, 2011
Tom held his first webinar on Wednesday, June 1. He spoke briefly about the retreat, then said he was going to have some guests speak at the prep sessions about different methods to support his work and our success as authors. That week his guest was Lori Zeltwanger, a physiotherapist trained in advanced release therapies, including myofascial release. She offers sessions before and during the retreat to assist people who have soft tissue issues.
I contacted her after and shared a bit about my medical challenges and she responded that she’d LOVE to help me release the trauma from my injuries. So I booked an appointment prior to the retreat and tentatively scheduled shorter sessions during the retreat.
Who Are You – A Road, Fish, Animal or Fowl?
Tom gave us our first writing assignment following the June 1 prep webinar.
As part of the essential group building energy that will be primary in carrying you through to the success you will experience at the retreat, I am asking you to not only get used to the retreat forum and to using it but to introduce who you really are to the group by replying to the following three questions and then posting them on the forum:
- If you were a road, where would you lead and why?
- If you were a fish, animal or fowl, what would you be and why?
- What one event or situation, more than any other, has made you into who you are today?
So was I the keener that I usually am? Did I sit right down the day after the assignment and get the job done? Not this time. I was actually angry about the questions. Or maybe I was angry because I didn’t know what to write. They seemed like really silly questions to me.
I finally started writing a response to the first question on Sunday morning. Then I abandoned my work because I felt I was going nowhere. On Sunday night, I decided to work on the assignment again because I didn’t have much free time before the June 8 webinar when the responses were due.
I turned on the Transitioning Back to the Author Within CD that Tom gave us and started on the first question. By the time I had written a somewhat lengthy response, I was really tired, so I wrote much shorter responses to the second and third questions. I went to the forum and saw that others had written even shorter responses. I thought maybe I should rewrite the first one to cut it down, but it was getting late. So I posted my comments and went to bed.
The next day when I went back to the forum and reread my responses I came to an ah-ha moment. I realized that I had been angry because I had to be vulnerable in order to answer those questions – I had to share personal things about myself with 30-odd people I have still not met. What would they think of me? Was I revealing too much? Was I revealing too little? I have trouble sharing on a personal level even with people I know. So what does that say about me? And even more importantly, what does it say to me? I think two weeks will tell.
Preparatory Webinar 2: June 8, 2011
Yesterday, Tom held his second preparatory webinar. His guest, Victoria Benoit, conducted a session on holographic programming. She shared what she sensed to be the beliefs that upcoming retreat participants hold, then she moved us from holding onto negative beliefs to embracing positive beliefs. Here are the beliefs she identified for our group:
- I can’t control my hand when I write.
- I can’t write perfectly.
- I’m afraid to write.
- I am punished if I don’t write.
- I will never make a difference through my writing.
- I am too stupid to write.
- If anyone implies that my writing is imperfect, I get angry.
- I have nothing to say that is worth reading.
- I hide myself so no-one can get to know me.
- I avoid expressing myself through writing.
- I write from my heart.
- I choose what I want to write, and I write and express myself with inspiration and ease.
- I have the courage to project who I am into the world through my writing.
- I am successful through my writing.
- Others accept and love what I write.
I wasn’t keen on saying the negative beliefs aloud with the rest of the group because I believe that “what we focus on is what expands.” And most of the negative beliefs didn’t resonate for me personally at that time anyway except for “I will never make a difference through my writing” and “I have nothing to say that is worth reading.” But give me a day or two and some of the others just may surface too.
I really liked the idea of the positive beliefs – I plan to repeat them every day as positive affirmations to ground myself for the retreat. They remind me of the Law of Attraction, especially the last one, “Others accept and love what I write.” Focusing on the positive will bring the positive into my life – after all, I attracted an iPad2 into my life just a month ago in a Twitter contest.
The best part of the webinar was when Tom said that there is no gray, only black or white – nervous or at peace – and that between now and the retreat we will be either one or the other. That was an encouragement. Earlier in the week I shared on the forum that I felt like I was on a teeter totter – up comes fear, down goes excitement, up comes excitement, down goes fear. I am going to remind myself of Tom’s words and embed them into my mind along with the phrase, “Trust the process.”
So now I feel grounded and at peace again. And next time the teeter totter moves again, I will be ready for it and remind myself that this too shall pass (after June 28). Trust the process.
2 weeks and counting….
Who am I to write a book? Who are you not to write a book? ~Tom Bird