Ever notice that sometimes you feel close to bursting with enthusiasm and motivation and other times you can’t find any inclination to do what you’re “supposed” to be doing? Even when you feel depleted, there’s usually something you feel like doing then, if you stop and pay attention. Creative energy sometimes seems to have a mind of its own. Instead of trying to forcibly apply your energy to a writing project you don’t spontaneously feel enthusiasm for, I recommend that you tune into where your creative energy wants to go, moment by moment.
For instance, the day I began creating this audio course from the notes of my prior courses, I had thought I would be working on a different project that was halfway finished. However, when I woke up I had an insight into how I could overcome an obstacle by adapting this material that had previously stumped me. I felt excited to start this course, and I did so rather than stick with the original plan. “Following your energy” almost always results in more writing and better writing completed in less time.
I’ve done this for so many years that it took an unpleasant experience to bring home to me the consequences of the fact that most people don’t know this principle. While talking about something else, I casually mentioned on an online forum for marketers that a particular press release would take me only 45 minutes to write. Over the next few days, the board exploded in criticism. From just that statement, other marketers condemned my ethics, my professionalism, my standards of quality, and a good deal more. Everyone else said they spent at least two hours and often much more on every press release.
Yet the truth remains that I have written some of the best press releases in the business, and I write many of them in only 45 minutes. What I do is, gather all the information I need, then wait a day or two until I feel like the press release is bursting to come out of me. And that’s when I write it, quickly and easily.
Perhaps you worry that if you waited to write Document D until you felt excited to write it, that time would never come and it would remain undone forever. Then try pondering a few options, including writing Document D and a few other things that you don’t normally like to do (cleaning out the garage?). Ask yourself which of those three options you’d most like to do at that moment. When the answer comes up, “Document D,” get started immediately. And it will get done more easily then than otherwise.
For me, a much-avoided activity is cleaning up my house. Yet times exist when I have a strong urge to do so – specifically when I am expecting visitors. The secret is acting at once when the urge strikes. That’s taking advantage of natural motivation.
From natural motivation, we turn to intuition in the next lesson.