Let it Go!
Well, it has been a little over a month since Rounding Home was published and what an exhilarating ride it has been so far. I can't explain the gratitude I feel when I get a text, email, phone call, or social media post, letting know how much you love my book. It all feels like an incredible dream that has finally come true.
I will be very honest; I was terrified to push the "ready to publish" key. I was shaking and thought for the one-hundredth time that I can't do it. I thought, what if people hate it? What if nobody buys it? What if family members never speak to me again out of embarrassment? At the same time, I don't think I have ever been more proud of anything in my entire life and could not wait to share it with the world. A bit confusing!
I know it is sort of sad that writing a book is probably my most significant personal accomplishment. I know people have done far greater and more meaningful things in life like graduating medical school or getting a gold medal in the Olympics. But for me, this is my perfect ten on the uneven bars moment.
Then, I let my head go to Defcon 5 as it sometimes does. I hear through the grapevine about a rough comment, and yes, I do have family members and friends that I am guessing don't like it, or even worse in my mind, don't say anything at all about it. What does the silence mean? In reality, they probably are just living life and have no idea I am losing sleep about why they have not "liked" any social media stuff or reached out in any way...ridiculous I know! I got my first three-star review with no explanation as to why and I thought about it for hours as to all the things it could be that he didn't like.
Why do we do this to ourselves? Why was it so easy for me to forget the hundreds of positive comments in every way, shape, and form and dwell on one bad review, or the silence from people I care about. How easy it is to spend time thinking about that ONE person that doesn't like you, or your work when there are way more people that DO!
Naturally, we all want to be liked, admired, and respected, but the reality is that it's virtually impossible to expect from everyone that comes in and out of your life. We can't control what others think about us, no matter what we do, but we can control how it affects us. We have the control not to spend hours or even days worrying about something we can do absolutely nothing about. It can be a game-changer to master that ability and is something I am getting better at every single day.
It is a pretty good feeling, finally understanding how to let it go. I was not always good at it, and I know I am not alone in the struggle; it is part of human nature to care what others think, which isn't always a bad thing. It's how LONG we let it bother us that is key and held me back from following a dream for far too long.
If I had continued living in fear of what people thought about me, I never would have experienced this fantastic feeling of accomplishment. I want to encourage all of you not to let fear hold you prisoner for one more minute. And you know what? People are going to have their opinion about you anyway. Might as well give them something to talk about! Chances are, more people will admire you for just merely trying and those people are all that matter. Let it go and go for it!