Editor’s Note: This article was written in April 2012 but its message continues to be relevant today…..
I have not written an article here on Conscious Bridge in a while. There’s a reason for that. All of my creative writing ability has been directed towards finishing the book I’ve been writing. I finished the first version last December. I shared it with a few people, received some minor suggestions and then received an intuitive message that I needed to do a major rewrite. I listened to that internal guidance.
I changed the focus of the book. I changed the title. I dropped whole chapters. I reordered and edited others. New material was created. I reedited and reedited. Every time I reread the book, I felt the need to tweak it a bit more. This process kept me from writing and posting blogs here.
Back in February, I attended the Spiritual Living Conference in New Orleans put on by the organization I work for, Centers for Spiritual Living. On the last night of the conference, one of those “coincidences” had me sitting at our banquet next to an individual who has published a few books. We began talking about writing. I left the conversation with two key takeaways. One was the idea that I didn’t have to put everything I knew into the book. The second was simply to finish the thing!
Sometimes we hold ourselves back from truly being ourselves. Even though something inside us is pushing us forward, we fear taking the next step. We judge ourselves inadequate. We fear the judgment of others. We tell ourselves stories so as to hold back in our safe environment. I’m not good enough. Who am I to do that? The book isn’t perfect yet. There is more I can put in it. There are other things I can write into the book that will move it closer to being “perfect”.
What story do you tell yourself that keeps you from being your true self? It’s time to allow that story to die and to allow another story to be born.
The truth is – you are good enough. You are the right person to do exactly what you are being called to do. As Nike said, “just do it”. Let go of your fears that whatever it is you are called to do has to be perfect. Let go of your self judgment or concerns about the good opinions of others. Just do the thing!
As I write these words, it is Easter weekend of 2012. That seems appropriate. Easter, for me, is about the cycle of death and rebirth. We are dying and being reborn all the time. Our physical body is continuously changing itself over as cells die and new ones are created. Our emotional body is continuously experiencing a sense of release and a sense of newness as the relationships around us come and go. Our mental body is continuously learning new things and replacing ideas and concepts that are no longer true for us.
I finally realized that even though everyday I am learning and growing and that there are new things that could go in the book, I don’t have to put those things in it. Waiting for me to have it say everything I want to say was simply an excuse, a rationalization of my fear. I needed to allow that fear to die and the book and its ideas in their current state to be born.
Yesterday, I shared the book with a few more friends. I also sent it off to a couple of publishers that I know. We’ll see what happens. One way or the other, I already know it will get published. Sending the book off was both a birth and a death. To a degree, I “died” as I let the ideas in the book be released from my mental fingers which clutched it tightly in search of the ever elusive personal sense of its “perfection”. To a degree, the books release from my stranglehold allows its ideas to take flight and be born in the world in some form or fashion. Yet even more important, the release created the space within me for more newness to appear. The mental coin I had tied up in finishing the book was spent. This morning, in the opening now created, new ideas are springing forth – ideas for this website, ideas for other books, ideas for workshops and more. I feel reborn.
What is it you’re called to do or be that you’re clutching tightly? It’s time to let it go, be yourself, share your gifts and talents and in so doing allow a new birth of freedom and love to take flight in your life!
Check out all of Mark Gilbert’s books—available at Amazon. Click here to visit his Author Page. This includes his recent one Our Spiritual Rights and Responsibilities. In this book, he offers what he suggests are the 5 basic rights we all possess by virtue of our being these spiritual beings on planet Earth — and our 2 responsibilities we all hold in relation to one another! Check it out!