Laura—Writer, editor, Success Freak
"I wish I’d understood the concepts of being a Success Freak when I was much younger. It’s taken me decades to get the nerve to pursue my goals, rather than going through the day-in, day-out motions of working for others. I always had the dream of being a writer, but my reluctance to “shoot for the stars” was based in fear. Not fear of failure or of disappointing someone, but fear of not being able to take care of myself. Since I grew up relatively poor—we were even on food stamps and welfare for a while—I always feared not making enough money. Now I understand that success is more than the amount of money you make. To me, it’s about having enough and doing work that I enjoy.
I didn’t go to college until I was 23, and I had five years of experience working in an advertising agency by then. After a few years in the working world, I was on the path of “achievement” that prescribed I should be accumulating things, maybe even buying a house. Then I quit that job to move to New York to attend Columbia University (how I managed to get accepted to an Ivy League school when I had a family that never said the word “college” to me is another story). When I was going to school, I loved being a waitress to pay my rent—it didn’t come with any “career” responsibilities. But after college, I ended up in another advertising job, so I could pay my student loans and credit card bills.
Nobody cares if you are achieving your dreams, either. But you should. You should care a lot.
Having debt is a dream killer. It took me years to pay mine off. Think about it: every dollar you pay for debt is a dollar (and time) you cannot invest in your pursuit of your life’s dream or your passion. It’s a real awakening when you realize that nobody cares what brand you are wearing or which car you are driving. Nobody cares if you are achieving your dreams, either. But you should. You should care a lot.
Today I have my own writing and editing business. To decide what type of business I wanted to start, I asked myself: If I could design my work day, what would I get excited about doing? What am I not willing to do? When I put together all my likes and dislikes regarding work, I created a plan for my business, however I wasn’t exactly fearless in starting it. It took my losing a job to push me to finally launch. But the important thing is that I was ready, because I had done the soul searching, and I had everything in place, even the business license, the name, the URL, and a website skeleton, just waiting in the wings. When it was time to pull the trigger, it ultimately was quite easy to launch.
It may seem to be a paradox to call myself a Success Freak in my 50s. But after all these years, I finally had the nerve to do what I should have been doing all along. Having my own business has given me the flexibility to pursue my own writing projects.
Dream, plan, get ready to launch, then do it.
I’m happy now, and don’t want to dwell on the “what ifs.” If you are still young, you have so much more time ahead of you, so much potential, and so many more years to try and fail, and try and fail, if necessary, to land on what your life’s work should be. Don’t squander it. I wish I’d listened to my inner passions and my gut thirty years ago. By the time you finally get the nerve to pursue your dreams, it can feel like it’s almost too late. Almost.
Dream, plan, get ready to launch, then do it."
About the book "Success Freak"
There is so much more to success than meets the eye. Success is acquired, not inherited. It’s something that can’t be defined by your bank account, or your job title, or the car you drive. From the moment we first scream our lungs out until our final breath, we look for ways to pursue our wildest dreams. Who doesn’t want to get more out of life? Yet, many of the old, traditional ideas about success no longer apply to today’s environment. Combining helpful exercises and easy-to-follow action plans, Success Freak will show you how to unleash the amazing potential that, yes, already lies within you., This interactive guide shares the seven skills that can transform your life in only one week, empowering you to become your own success story. You are about to become an unstoppable force of resolve and determination: nothing short of the Success Freak you were always meant to be.
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