You can never really tell what will come in handy as a writer or where inspiring ideas that can give us a jolt of energy will come from. A case in point: “4 Principles of the Wrestling Mindset,” a poster created by Gene Zannetti, a sports psychology expert. When my friend and mentor Rob Gilbert quoted this poster on his Success Hotline (973.743.4690), I knew right away it could be adapted to the writing life. So here’s my rewrite:
4 Principles of the Wrestling (Writing) Mindset
#1 I am thankful for the opportunity to wrestle (write).
Having the opportunity to share our stories, fantasies, hopes, dreams, and fears with the world through our writing is a gift. Whenever I write, I light a small candle by my desk to remind me that giving life to words is a time-honored calling that I am blessed to pursue. Gratitude opens the door to abundance.
#2 I am aggressive and relentless.
Right above my computer, I have a sticky note with a quote from Vincent van Gogh: “I attack the page, struggling like a lion.” I keep this right in front of my nose to remind me that writing is not for the faint-hearted. It takes courage. It takes stamina. It takes aggressive attention and pursuit. It takes relentless dedication and relentless willingness to endure frustration, setbacks, and rejection.
#3 I have no fear of losing or making mistakes.
To survive and thrive in the pursuit of our craft requires full effort — and letting go of a focus on winning and losing. We need to take a “win some, learn some” approach to any mistakes we make and see them as stepping stones rather than missteps.
#4 I never, ever give up.
Whatever obstacles we face, inner fears or outer demands on our time, believing in our work, we write on!