If you want to become good at anything then you have to grow. You have to learn. And to do these things… sometimes you have to do hard things.
But, as the phrase suggests, it’s hard.
It takes a lot of strength and courage to do these things, whatever they might be. I’ve gone through a lot of hard things already with my writing and, let me tell you, it was hard. And I know I still have a lot more to go through… encouraging, right? Ugh.
Some of these hard things might include receiving feedback on your writing, going to a writer’s conference, querying an agent, or putting yourself out on a limb and asking an author for help. These are just a few things you might experience. Depending on your personality, some of these things might be easier for you than for someone else… but they’re still hard.
How do you find the strength for those situations?
The hard truth is that sometimes, even if it’s hard, you have to do it anyways. Such as when I was at a writer’s conference last year and there was an agent I wanted to talk with. Suddenly I was frozen to the spot where I stood and I couldn’t move. That’s when my friend gave me a friendly shove… directly towards the agent.
No backing out now.
That is a perfect instance of doing something anyways. Even if it’s hard. Even if you don’t necessarily want to. (I mean, I wanted to talk with the agent, but my nerves certainly didn’t. XD) But it’s also a wonderful example of how friends can help push you through hard situations (sometimes literally).
Almost all of the hard things I’ve done through my writing journey, I did because one of my friends was there to encourage me and help me through the situation. I couldn’t have done so many of these things without them. Should I name off a few?
Receiving feedback: The first time I asked for beta readers on the first few chapters of one of my books… let’s just say that nerves had more than gotten the best of me. But a close friend of mine was there for me every step of the way, even through my millions of texts where I practically screamed my head off. Without her, I wouldn’t have taken the critique well and continued writing afterwards. XD It was rough.
Going to a conference: Yeah. There’s no way I could have gotten through that experience without my friends. It turned out to be one of the best experiences in my entire writing journey so far, but there’s no way I would have had the courage to do it—let alone get anything out of it—without my friends. I mean, let’s face it, if it hadn’t been for my friend I would still be rooted to that spot staring at that agent. XD
Asking an author for help: Yep, I’ve done it. I’ve messaged authors before and sometimes they respond… sometimes they don’t. Whether they do or not, it’s nerve wracking. I never would have had the courage to do it without my friend to encourage me and dare me to press the send button. I never could have done it without her there to celebrate when they reply, or throw a pity party when they don’t.
Is my point proven yet?
But friends aren’t the only source of help you can find.
As cliche as this might sound, it’s true: God is the ultimate giver of strength. He will be there for you when times get tough. When you feel alone. When you don’t think you can face the next hard thing. He’s there to carry you through.
As much as my friends helped me through each of these situations, God helped me more. Through each hard situation that arises, I pray. For strength, for peace, for courage to get through. Or, more than likely, courage to actually take that first step.
Life was never meant to be easy. But God has given us more than enough tools and resources to see us through the hard times (and through the good times!). Never forget to call on Him in your time of need.
So, yeah! This is my call to fellow writers to do hard things! Step up and take the challenge. Do the impossible. Do it all to glorify God’s kingdom!
Each persons hard thing will look differently. It doesn’t matter the size of the task, just the difficulty level for you. Send an article to another blog or a short story to a magazine. Finally take the plunge and send your book proposal to that agent, or ask friends and family to critique your work.
Maybe your hard thing is to start that story you’ve had in your head forever. Or start the blog you’ve been planning. Or any other hard thing that you’ve been wanting to do but have been too scared to actually do it. Fill in the blank space whatever your hard thing might be and do it.
Just do it.
It’s as easy and as simple as that.
What hard thing did you do recently? What is something you’ve wanted to do for a while now but never had the courage to pursue? How can I pray for you?