The Process Sucks. It’s Suppose To But In The End, It’s All Worth It.
I never use to think patience was something that could be learned. I use to think that people fell into two categories; patient and impatient. You either had it or you didn’t. There was no book, no amount of blog posts you could absorb at your office desk to acquire. As a friend of mine loves to say to explain the mystery of life…
“It is what it is.”
It’s normal to feel like you just want everything to fall in place for you, your book becomes the next New York Times Best-Seller, you end up on Ellen as apart of your book tour and you sell out any venue you speak at. I was a victim of that. I created a set of expectations for myself so high (I actually developed a level of egoism where I genuinely thought I was going to go on Ellen because how could I not? I had the most interesting story, was good on camera and great in front of audiences. Plus my book was awesome, why wouldn’t you read it.
At least I thought I was.
I never went on Ellen. I wrote a book but it didn’t sell as much as I wanted it to. I was decent at best on camera and wasn’t polished enough to make the speaking circuit. When none of this happened for me, I broke down. Two years ago to be exact. I cried in my room, alone looking out my window at Midtown Manhattan wondering why I wasn’t living the dream so many authors chase.
Why wasn’t Random House and Penguin kicking down my doors?
Didn’t I practice self-manifestation enough to make my wants happen?
Isn’t that Law of Attraction shit suppose to work when you want something so bad, you would bleed for it?
I hated being just another writer. I didn’t want to be just another one. I was destined to be great. That’s what my publisher told me. That’s what my friends and family told me. That’s what everyone hoped for me. Fame. Fortune. The whole nine yards. Yet, I found myself full of rejection. Full of acceptance of what I thought wasn’t suppose to happen.
Worst of all, I quit writing and only asked myself this very question.
Why didn’t it happen?
I’m convinced at the ripe age of 34 that the reason why the fame and fortune, the appearance on Ellen never happened was because I didn’t enjoy the process of writing.
I wrote to sell. I wrote to gain fame. I wrote to be noticed.
I should have written because vulnerability fucking sucks and it’s necessary to be it to get anywhere in life. I should have the thought of quitting on a project because I was beating myself up over it and so invested in it. If you think about quitting a project, that means you’re putting yourself into your work.
If you think it sucks and no one will want to see it (trust me, someone will) that means you are emotionally invested and you were vulnerable. You actually give a shit.
But if you can’t spill your heart and soul onto paper, in words, in art, you aren’t in the process. You’re thinking of the end goal and the end goal is what destroys you.
My friends, the thing that I learned from not making it is that I have freed myself from the expectation that I should make it. In fact, I learned that the process is the process. Nothing more. nothing less. It requires patience, understanding, and zero expectations with no end goal in sight.
And in the end, that’s what makes it worth it when you just write to write, paint to paint, and create to create.
Note: Check out more from me at mikeliguori.com