Getting to the Next Level? I Don’t Need It

I love Tyler Perry’s new video on his Facebook page about how to be successful. In essence, he talks about

Photo Credit: Christian Beirle Gonzalez

focusing on one thing at a time and believing in it, and seeing it through. He uses the metaphor of planting a seed, saying that you can’t spray water across the field and expect much of it to get to the one seed you planted. But if you continually plant and water in the right area, God will give the increase. I love it!

This is why I don’t get excited when people give me their (often unsolicited) advice for what I should do as a new author. I’ve heard that I should now:

– start a nonprofit
– team up with a local “megachurch”
– do a book tour all over the country
– get a show on blogtalkradio

I should do all of this to get to “the next level”? Now?

I can tell that some of the people who gave me this advice A) do not run a business of their own and/or B) have not counted the cost (time and money) of such endeavors.

It took me almost 2 years to develop, write and produce my first book independently, and I have goals for it, but at this point in my life I am not going to take on more than I can handle. I also refuse to do what everyone else is doing just for the sake of saying “I did that, too.” It takes due diligence, research, and coaching to get to any “next level.”

I don’t blog every day, I don’t post on my social media sites every day, and I don’t answer every email the moment I get it. I’m pacing myself and reserving my energy these days for the opportunities and activities that I enjoy, or that I deem necessary to promote my brand and causes I believe in. None of the activities suggested to me are inherently wrong, but this may not be the time to do it. I’ve talked to people for example, who started nonprofits that are totally inactive at present (due to lack of funding, a shift in purpose, poor planning, or all three). I’m in no hurry to try the plethora of marketing programs out there to help me make more money, speak better, etc. They may be good, and they may work, but the sheer number of them is overwhelming. If I can’t discern a good fit for my goals and assured that I won’t be taken advantage of (my time or money), then I don’t need it in my life right now.

My next level may not include being on the New York Times Bestseller List. My next level may not be getting a show on OWN. I discuss my goals on this blog often and those types of things are just not what I’m focused on right now. And maybe that’s a good thing. Because sometimes the best things in life just come to you, and sometimes you have to work for them. Either way, I want whatever God has for me to do– not what you think I should do.