7 Habits of the Successfully Published, Part 2: Discipline

authors cornerPersonal BrandingSuccess Strategies

Although not-yet-published authors (i.e., dreamers), often view writing a book in terms of creativity, inspiration, and talent, successfully published authors–and the book coaches they depend on–place the emphasis on discipline.

Discipline may not be as glamorous as creativity, but discipline is–ultimately–the foundation of writing and publishing a book that establishes your personal brand, drives new business, and opens doors of opportunity.

Cultivating the habits of success

Your habits determine your success! That’s the underlying “big idea” from today’s most successful authors, including Jack Canfield (The Success Principles), Mark Victor Hansen, (The Power of Focus) and John Maxwell (Make Every  Day Count: The Secret of Your Success is Determined by Your Daily Agenda).

Your habits determine how you spend your time each day. You can spend your days procrastinating, responding and reacting, or you can spend your days investing in your future.

Focus is the act of identifying the tasks that you are uniquely qualified to perform that will reward you the most. Everyone has 24 hours in their day. You can spend your hours “putting out fires” in your business, or you can invest your time in a project, like writing a brand-building book, that will reward you for years to come awareness, credibility, and respect.

Discipline puts focus to work

Discipline is “focus in action.” Discipline transforms dreams and intentions into daily habits that result in consistent, sacrifice-free progress toward your goal of writing a brand-building book.

Discipline involves breaking the habits of “busy work,” and replacing it with the habits of daily progress on your book based on short, scheduled, working sessions.

Brand-building books are the result of research, organization, writing, re-writing, and on-going marketing. Discipline comes from:

  • Market and reader research, so you can write a book that your intended market wants, rather than a book that simply profiles your knowledge.
  • Building your days around your book, rather than trying to “fit your book time” in wherever there’s left-over time.
  • Realistic expectations, like being by satisfied when you write 2 pages during a 30-minute, daily writing session, rather than trying to “spend the weekend” writing your book–sacrificing valuable family time (and setting yourself up for disappointment if it doesn’t work out).

Discipline can come cheap

Discipline can be as simple and inexpensive as setting up a free online Google Calendar that sets aside time each day for you to devote to planning, writing, promoting, and profiting from your book.

An online Google calendar permits you to assemble your day around your book. It translates your dream of getting published into specific activities you commit to during specific times of the day.

The advantage of a Google calendar is that you can share your calendar, and writing commitments, with family and friends. When they realize how serious you are about your commitment to daily progress, they will be less likely to interrupt you, or schedule other demands during your daily writing time.

Books don’t plan, write, promote, or profit by themselves

Experienced authors recognize that books don’t write themselves, they have to be written–even if you don’t “feel like” writing during a scheduled session.

Experienced authors also recognize realities like quality–by itself–isn’t enough to promote your book to success, and you also can’t depend on publishers to promote your book.

Although there are some last-minute, overnight successes, in the vast majority of cases, discipline, not creativity, inspiration, or talent–spells the difference between writing your own brand building book–or simply reading brand building books written by others.