I am a writer. Writing is my passion and love – and it is what I do every day, in some shape or form, whether in my day job, in creating novels or my blog.
But, I did not always consider myself “a writer”. Instead, I considered myself to be someone who liked to write.
There is a difference and it is subtle, but it is critically important to recognize.
If you are someone who is pursuing a passion, e.g., as an artist, landscape architect, baker, designer, etc. then ask yourself: ARE YOU CLAIMING YOURSELF TO BE THIS or ARE YOU “PLAYING” at it?
Are you treating it as a HOBBY or are you recognizing this as a CAREER PATH?
Maybe you are claiming your passion tentatively. Saying you are a (fill in blank), but are not fully believing it. Hey, that is a start. You need to start claiming this, even if it does not feel comfortable at first.
You may not feel comfortable with this claim because you think that you are not qualified or people will think you are not credible . . . there could be a million reasons why you do not feel comfortable with it. Claim it anyway. The more you do, the easier it will become.
And then, embrace your value! To do this, you must first disregard outside criticism and also validation. I have just released my next novel, THE MARINARA THEORY, and I am feeling all sorts of emotions. There is excitement, apprehension, fear, anxiety, and an overwhelming feeling of self-consciousness and exposure. BUT, overall, there is also a sense of pride, knowing that I did it.
There will be criticism. My book will not be liked by everyone and that is okay. There will also be praise, but that should not matter either . . . not to me. I need to RELY on how I felt writing the book (it was fun) and how I feel having completed it (proud). The only validation that is critical is your OWN self-validation.
This doesn’t mean you are perfect or do not have more to learn. I have lots to learn (I know that) but I am still claiming myself as a writer. That is why I started the Bright Light Living blog – to encourage others to not live small but, instead, brightly.
Claim your worth.
And also, feel it, deep down.
What do I mean? When I started as a grant writer, I didn’t start off feeling like this was something that I was good at. I wrote, hoping that by throwing some grant requests out there, they would “stick” – get funded. Now, I absolutely EXPECT to get funded with each grant – and in most cases, I do. Expect to achieve your goals as this is essential in claiming your value. (Refer to EXPECT to Achieve Your Goals).
For my first book, I didn’t expect sales; I had hoped for sales, I thought it would be nice to receive sales, but I went into not knowing what would happen. With this book, I EXPECT sales. I see the value of my book. It’s a total shift in my mindset. I now come from a place (and feeling) of belief.
You see, when we claim our value, we are not being cocky. Instead, we are recognizing the gift that God gave us and honoring God by thanking him for it, using it, and valuing it. That is Living Bright.
[EVERY MONDAY, A NEW ‘HABIT’ WILL BE POSTED AS PART OF MY BRIGHT LIGHT LIVING HEALTHY HABITS SERIES. THESE ‘HEALTHY HABITS’ ENCOMPASS HABITS FOR THE MIND, BODY, SPIRIT, AND ONE’S PERSPECTIVE OF LIFE—IN ORDER TO LIVE BRIGHT. YOU MAY WISH TO IMPLEMENT THE HABITS EACH WEEK (IF SO, I ENCOURAGE YOU TO DOWNLOAD THE HEALTHY HABITS ASSESSMENT FORM). OR, THE WEEK’S HABIT CAN SIMPLY SERVE AS A JOURNAL PROMPT OR SOMETHING TO PONDER. IT’S UP TO YOU. I DO HOPE YOU WILL CHECK IN EACH WEEK.]