So, last night at my event in Asheville, somebody asked me how I stay focused on my work when I have lost heart, or feel afraid, or have a crisis of confidence.
For me, I can only stir up my creativity when I ask myself the big cosmic question: "What have I come here to do?"
My answer has always been the same: "I came here to write."
I've always wanted to be a writer. I promised the universe that I would be a writer — long before anyone was buying my work. And let me make something clear: I never promised the universe that I would write WELL, or that my books would be beloved by critics, or that my work would resonate with people, or that my work would even be published, or that everything will turn out according to my desires. I merely promised that I would write. Full stop. Here's the contract: I will write to the best of my ability, and then I will release it. Whatever happens next — once I have released my work into the world — is none of my business. I just came here to write.
So, whenever I get frustrated, or blocked, or fearful, I remind myself that I came here to to be a writer. Then I turn my attention back toward writing and I ask it respectfully, "What do you need from me?"
Writing always gives me the same answer: "Your patience, and your labor."
And so I get back to work.
It is your patience and your labor that allows miracles to happen.
What did you come here to do?