One of my intentions for this year is to write my first book – The Art of Selling Transformation. However, for the past few months I’ve been decidedly stuck with it – not knowing how to structure it or what needs to be included.
Whenever I do make some headway I don’t get very far forward before I get stuck again.
On the surface it looks like the logical step would be to hire a book coach to help me. Yet intuitively I know it’s not really about the structure – it’s something deeper – something energetic.
Ironically what I’m grappling with is what my book is all about – the connection between where we are on our spiritual path, and what shows up for us in the outside world.
I’ve often struggled with writing, articulating what I know and sharing it in a way people will get it. I’ve grappled over and over, oscillating between what I want to write about – my journey, my personal experiences, my insights, how I use these insights in my everyday life – and what I feel I “should” write about – I should teach, tell you about the struggles I’ve overcome, sharing the exact steps I took so you don’t make the same mistakes I did.
Yet deep down I know we don’t learn from other people’s mistakes.
When we “learn” from other people’s mistake we only learn at an intellectual level – it’s theoretical. We understand it but we don’t “get it” at an energetic level.
The easiest way I have of sharing this is something that happened a few years ago with my daughter. She had a banana that she brought home from school and she wanted to save it for the next day. She was going to put it in the fridge but I told her not to because it would go black if she did.
The next morning I found said banana in the fridge – it was black. When I gave it to her she told me she didn’t hear me say not to put it in the fridge.
I learnt later that she actually did hear but chose to ignore my advice. However, instead of being cross I saw what a gift this incident was. Had she done what I recommended she’d have been able to eat her banana the next day. But she would never have learnt that bananas go black when you put them in the fridge – she would simply have been doing what she was told – following someone else’s rules without understanding why.
But what does this have to do with business?
So much of business marketing is based along the lines of “I burnt the midnight oil learning this so you don’t have to”. It appeals because we want the short-cut – we want the fast-track. If we can get there faster by walking in someone else’s footsteps then why wouldn’t we?
Yet this doesn’t work when we sell transformation. As transformational leaders we’re pioneers – we’re forging our own path. Getting advice, reading books, following road-maps, learning systems is all fantastic – and we do need to do this.
However, transformational leadership is not about getting others to follow in our footsteps – it’s about inspiring others to forge their own path.
And it always comes down to this:
Be the change you want to see in the world
As transformational leaders we are called to do this on every level.
When I sit down to write and give myself enough space to connect to my soul – there’s a depth and a power that I can feel. It flows from my fingertips – there’s no struggle, no doubt – just flow.
It usually takes a little floundering for me to get there – some general chit-chat to warm up – no different to warm-up exercises before a run or exercise class.
Then I edit it and share it (often easier said than done).
Then I go into fear – what if no-one likes it – what if the depth and power I feel as I’m writing is just an illusion? What if what I’ve written is rubbish and I’m delusional to think it’s any good?
If I get feedback that people like it – then I breathe a sigh of relief – my work’s ok – it’s needed in the world. I’m wanted. Phew.
But if I hear nothing back – or worse – someone criticizes or questions what I’ve written – then I’m filled with shame and doubt – wishing I’d never published it at all – wanting to retract it. And this happens with any writing that comes from my soul – whether it’s an email, blog post or FB comment.
I can do all the energy work I want but I still need to write and publish my work if I want to be a published author.
I believe that as transformational leaders – we’re always being called to align our inner knowing with our outer actions. We can’t focus on one and ignore the other – we need to do both in tandem. And if we’re running a business built on this, our results will always reflect how aligned these two parts are.
For, me, my journey is all around self-expression. The greater I trust that I have something valuable to share – the more clients I will attract. Whilst I can talk about trust until the cows come home –things will only shift for me when I demonstrate trust. I must:
BE THE CHANGE
Little by little, step by step.
That’s the essence of my book. And that’s what I practice on a daily basis, in every area of my life.