I think one of the best things to write about when you don’t know what to write about is what you are afraid of.
Write about your fears.
Including and especially the unthinkable things. Things too ugly, too nasty, too horrifying to think about.
Sure, you’re afraid and worried you won’t be successful or not make enough money to live your dream lifestyle. But how would you deal if your daughter got trapped under the roof in a car accident and then burned alive as you helplessly stood and watched.
Right. That’s what I mean by too ugly to even think about.
But guess what. Things like that, and things far worse, do happen every day.
And, one of two things happen to people who have been through extremely traumatic situations.
One, they get traumatized for life. Like severe PTSD. Lose their minds and sanity. Neurotic wrecks for life. Maybe commit suicide.
Two, they deal with it. However long it may take. They come to accept it. They surrender. They stop fighting reality.
And those are the strongest, most resilient, most human, emotionally autonomous people you will ever meet.
I’m telling you about the extreme examples to show you the distinctions.
Surrender and acceptance of what is, that’s the key to all of life.
In Kamal Ravikant’s book “Live Your Truth,” or maybe it was his first book “Love Yourself Like Your Life Depends On It” -- I forget, I read both almost simultaneously -- he talks about a monk he met who he asked how he was always so content and cheerful. The monk answered “I say yes. No matter what happens, I say ‘yes’”.
Say yes. That’s the most concise, most useful two-word guide to life ever.
Recently I’ve had a really hard time making my way through books. I finish 30% at most. But both of Kamal’s books are well worth reading. I don’t say that lightly about anything. (Oh, and go watch “Dr. Horrible’s Sing Along Blog” on Netflix. LEGENDARY.)
Most books suck. 99.9% of them. It’s all so boring. Like here’s this academic professor guy who did research for a couple years and now shares some stories about it.
Revolutionary, groundbreaking, they say. Whatever.
If you’re not vulnerable, you’re boring. If you’re just telling fun stories and anecdotes from your work and life... you’re just boring.
It needs to come from an authentic place. I hate to say that you need to speak from the heart, because it’s so cliché, but it’s true.
I was having a discussion last night with a friend about comedians. I’m a huge fan of stand-up comedians, and I observed a critical distinction between the really really good ones and the truly world class ones.
Louis CK is #1 in the world right now because when he gets on stage, he cuts a vein and bleeds. Every three months he trashes everything and writes a brand new show from scratch. Every time, he digs deeper within himself and pulls the material from a real place.
The very best comedians get on stage and invite you into their world. They say, here, this is the world as I see it.
When you leave the room, you, the rest of the audience, and the comedian all share something special now.
You can never re-tell a Louis CK joke to a friend, second hand, and do it as well as he does on stage. ‘Cuz you’re not him.
But you could share YOUR authentic story with the world. This article, and my book, they give you a little peek of what it’s like on Planet Linus.
If you are a creator, you need to invite people to temporarily join you on your planet.
So you’re an entrepreneur or artist and you have are afraid of being a fraud?
Guess what, that goes for ALL real entrepreneurs and artist. So grab a pen, write about it, and deal with it already. You’re not a special princess.
You can see the whole world as either flow or obstruction. I do. So I only care about two things. More flow, less obstruction.
If you have fears, like fear of being a fraud, or fear of failure... or maybe you have daddy issues, or maybe you had a traumatic childhood, or whatever.
That’s all obstruction. You can’t do anything when you are in obstruction.
You’re just a victim. In fact, being a victim is probably part of your identity. “Of course I can’t be successful, I was molested as a child!”
It’s a good excuse. You’ll receive pity from everyone you ever meet. Almost. Yep, it’s horrible. But guess what? It’s up to you and no one else to live your life.
You want to stay a victim, and throw your life away because of something that happened in the past... be my guest.
Or you can grab a pen, sit down, shut up, and deal with your crap. Do what you have to so that you can say yes. Say yes to everything that happens. Say yes to everything that has ever happened. Say yes to everyone, always. So now, you may receive pity from others, but never feel sorry for yourself. Your life is in your hands. If not yours, who else’s?