inspiring quotes

09/11/15 Indie , inspiration , Life , Uncategorized # , , ,

A Head Full of Fear

Head_Fear_QuoteI saw this quote about a week ago and have been thinking about it ever since. I’ve always had a saying that has served me well;

Never make a decision out of fear.

You’d be surprised how many decisions are fear-based when that is your litmus test.

Now because this is the internet and the internet is full of trite sayings that, when dissected under the magnifying glass of critical thinking, aren’t helpful and might actually be harmful, I’m going to give you a disclaimer.

Fear can be good. Fear makes you look both ways before crossing the street. It makes you think carefully before making a career decision that might have lasting implications for you or your family. It keeps you from driving too fast and eating too much junk food.

That’s not the kind of fear I’m talking about.

I’m talking about the kind of fear that paralyzes you. The kind of fear that keeps you from taking a step in any direction because something might go wrong. Like many people, I struggle with that fear on a weekly basis. The burden feels greater because I am responsible for other human beings, and I don’t want to fuck things up for them.

But friends, I am so, so, SO glad I have not let fear rule my life. I didn’t let it rule my life when I got out of two bad marriages. (yeah, my track record there isn’t so great, but you know what? Everyone is happier now, my kids included). I didn’t let it rule my life when I ditched a very high paying but unsatisfying job in my home state of California for a quieter life in rural New York where I didn’t know anyone and didn’t have a job. I didn’t let it decide whether I should write back in 2004, when I got serious and started writing the books that led me to Prophecy of the Sisters and my first deal with Little Brown. I haven’t let it rule my life while I’ve experimented with a bunch of different genres – from YA Gothic fantasy, contemporary fantasy, Steampunk, and contemporary fiction to adult romance and psychological thrillers.

That doesn’t mean I haven’t been scared. It doesn’t mean I haven’t made mistakes either. But I haven’t regretted any of them, because I’ve been in motion. I’ve been MOVING. And even the things that seemed like mistakes at the time, later looked like exactly the thing I needed to lead me to the next good thing that WASN’T a mistake.

Isn’t life funny that way? I’ll bet if you look back on the “bad” things that happened to you, you’ll find that the vast majority were precursors to something good that wouldn’t have happened if you hadn’t been confronted with the “bad” one. If you think about taking away that one negative experience, what would you lose that was good?

And I’ll let you in on another secret; almost always, the thinking about doing something scary is worse than the actual doing. That’s because we build up all these scary scenarios in our head, and statistically, they aren’t ALL going to come true. Plus, when you’re moving, you don’t have as much space in your brain for worrying and being scared. You’re too busy taking steps, looking around, making something happen.

For the first time in a long time, I feel in control of my situation. Wanna know my one regret?

Not taking control sooner. Being so scared that I stood still for so long, or if not still, that I didn’t move in the one direction that offered the most promise.

So look your fear in the face, dear friends. What’s the worst that can happen, really? What’s the best? Is your avoidance of the worst worth sacrificing the possibility of the best? Will you be satisfied later, when you’re still in the same place because you were afraid to take a step? Because here is one absolutely universal truth; nothing in your life will change if you keep doing the same things over and over again.

And you know what? Taking a step isn’t very hard. It’s just one step. Take one today and another one tomorrow. You will be two steps closer to the thing you want, and you’ll be so busy moving, you’ll be surprised by how your fear recedes into the background. Free up all that space in your brain and psyche and imagination for something better. Because there is always something better than fear.

<3

 

 

 

0 likes no responses
03/10/15 Life # , , , , ,

The Unessential

Bruce_Lee_Unessential“Hack away at the unessential.”

This is what I’ve been working on the past couple of years. It isn’t easy. If you’re a Pleaser like me, you want to help out, you want to participate, not necessarily because you enjoy it, but because you want to make other people happy (Elizabeth Gilbert has a nice post on FB today about saying No, and that’s very much the same thing). But that’s no good. Then everyone else is happy but you are frazzled and UNhappy, and there is less room for your particular brand of joy because all the corners or your life are stuffed full of the unessential.

You know what happens when I don’t participate? Nothing. Eventually an event comes along in which I want to participate, and I enjoy those quite a lot.

You know what happens when I don’t help out? Someone else does.

There are plenty of things I enjoy participating in and LOTS of ways I enjoy helping out. I’m learning to make my contribution there and trust that there are others in the world who enjoy making theirs where I don’t. It’s left much more room for the essential – family, reading, writing, taking walks, going to the movies. I’m better for it, and I’ve come to believe that being as centered and at peace as possible is the very best thing we can all do for the world at large.

If you’re feeling frazzled, stretched too thin, or generally unhappy, take a few moments to ask yourself what you’d like more room for. What can you hack away at to make those things possible? Some of the things I’ve given up over the past few years include the PTA at my kids’s school, TV (I watch a little bit on Netflix, but streaming means that I’m never a slave to the TV line-up), social events that don’t excite me, and dating. That last one is a biggie! I’ve been single by choice for seven years, because frankly, a significant other just isn’t as essential to my happiness as all those other things I mentioned. Maybe someday that will change, but I’ll deal with that when the time comes.

Make your own list! And as the kids say; you do you.

😉

0 likes no responses
12/03/14 AdviceforGirls , Life # , , ,

Advice for Girls #1

I’m sure it comes as no surprise to learn that I’m a ponderer. It’s hard for me to turn my brain off even to sleep, which is probably why meditation has been such a lifesaver for me. We NEED white space in our brain, wide open space with no words or thoughts.

But I realized that a lot of the things I think about are things I wish I’d known when I was younger. Younger, like, twenty years ago, and younger, like, two years ago.

😉

 

So I decided to start documenting those thoughts in a simple way, on my social media sites with the hashtag #AdviceforGirls. I like to think they will come at just the right time for someone, and maybe in a parallel universe, a younger me will hear it too.

So today’s #AdviceforGirls is this; You are allowed to want whatever you want without apology. Period.

0 likes no responses
09/25/14 Life # , ,

Go Out Into the World and Do Good

Go_Into_the_WorldSometimes you just need a reminder of why we’re really here. <3

0 likes no responses
09/22/14 Life # , , , , , , ,

Let It Breathe

hafiz_quoteFor years now I’ve had a recurring dream. The details are never exactly the same, but I’m always lost someplace, trying desperately to get out because I MUST be somewhere else immediately. When my children were younger, it was usually that I was supposed to pick them up, and I knew they were waiting for me on the other side of a mall or city or office building that I couldn’t seem to navigate. Floors changed from gymnasiums to hospitals, hallways turned into mazes from which there was no escape, and city blocks seemed to morph before my eyes into an unrecognizable landscape. I’d end up wandering around, thinking, “But that corner was RIGHT HERE.”

Saturday night I dreamed that I was in a strange kind of dorm with my daughter. We were supposed to man a booth for charity at a flea market, but we’d both woken up late. She wanted to throw clothes on and go, but I preferred to take a quick shower first so I wasn’t so out of it. We were still negotiating when she decided to leave without me. So I tried to find my way there, but the harder I tried to escape the dorm building, the more lost I became. Eventually I decided to go to the first floor, reasoning there would at least be access to an exit, but when I got there it was a hospital with sick people in every room and no exits I could find. When I went back up to the second floor, it had become a sports arena, and in my dream, I wasn’t even sure I’d been on the second floor of the dorm to begin with.

And all the while, the minutes ticked by. I kept checking clocks on the walls only to find that it had become so late in the afternoon that there was hardly a point trying to get to the flea market at all. I woke up panicked, with a familiar knot of anxiety in my chest that told me how wound up I’d been even in my sleep.

After that, I thought a lot about why I keep having these dreams, and why they make me so anxious, and I realized it’s never the being LOST that freaks me out; it’s always the fact that I’M SUPPOSED TO BE SOMEWHERE ELSE. It’s that ticking clock telling me I’m late, that itinerary telling me I have somehow failed my responsibilities. Such an obvious connection to real life that “metaphor” hardly applies!

It seems there’s always someplace else I’m supposed to be, something else I should have done by now. I’m never where I believe I SHOULD be. Shouldn’t I be on some bestseller list somewhere by now? Shouldn’t I have won some kind of award? Shouldn’t there be a movie or TV show about ONE of my books? Shouldn’t I have more financial security? And this isn’t an entitlement thing. It’s a “what the hell have I been doing with myself?” thing.

But the answer is simple. I’m on the road. I’m working and raising kids and learning and growing and experimenting (when I have the luxury), and yes, making mistakes, too. I’m here because I need to be here, and because there is some purpose to this particular hallway, this particular floor. There is something important I haven’t yet seen or done on this city block, and I think I will be better off if I just stop looking at the clock and instead take a deep breath and look around.

<3

0 likes no responses
09/02/14 Life # , , , , ,

Happy New Week!

charles-bukowski-quotes-drink-from-the-wellOne of the most amazing things about this beautiful, wonderful, crazy life is that there is no limit to the number of times you can begin again.

<3

 

0 likes no responses
Sign up for book news and free bonus content!

Michelle Zink is the award-winning author of over seven novels. She lives in New York with too many teenagers and too many cats.
Michelle Zink Online
Michelle St. James Online
ORDER LIES I TOLD
iBooks
Amazon
B & N
IndieBound

ORDER THIS WICKED GAME
iBooks
Amazon
B & N
IndieBound

ORDER A TEMPTATION OF ANGELS
iBooks
Amazon
B & N
IndieBound

ORDER CIRCLE OF FIRE
iBooks
Amazon
B & N
Indiebound

ORDER GUARDIAN OF THE GATE
iBooks
Amazon
B & N
Indiebound

ORDER PROPHECY OF THE SISTERS
iBooks
Amazon
B & N
Indiebound
Acclaim

"This arresting story takes readers to other planes of existence…"
- Booklist (starred review)


“An intense and captivating story…”
- VOYA (starred review)


“A fresh and engaging cast of characters, a page-turning plot and lyrical prose add up to an accomplished feat of storytelling…”
- The Guardian


“A captivating tragedy…"
- Publishers Weekly


“Zink’s methodical unfolding of events will draw readers in…”
- Kirkus


“Tingly suspense is craftily managed…”
- The Bulletin

Awards
 

 



@MichelleZink
RT @BraddJaffy: Russian government official who makes $75,000 a year spent millions on Trump condos https://t.co/uz1xsB5tQl
RT @Spicerlies: @TrueFactsStated Well tickle me surprised, no wonder why Deutsche is stonewalling Congress. See my thread of Congressional…