Tuesday, June 21, 2016 by Cindy Sproles

Yep, it happened to me. Scammed. Me, the cynic! The one who is overly cautious. Stingy with information. Me. I was scammed because I let my heart get in the way of my head.

Thank goodness I had the good sense to stop the incident before it could go very far, but the fact remains. . .I got took!

I’ve spent a few days walking the road to recovery. It’s the same 7 steps that anyone goes through who’s experienced a trauma or loss: Shock/denial, pain/guilt, anger, depression/loneliness, the upward turn, rebuilding, acceptance and hope (I think I’ve hit the anger part).  Still it is a process to heal when you find your vulnerability and realized someone else capitalized on it.

As I began to write on my next chapter, I realized just how much this scam affected me. No matter how I tried to concentrate on the words to write, the negative self-talk overtook it all. Stupid. How could you be so gullible? And then it got worse – What if I’ve put my family in danger? What if they manage to find their way into our bank accounts? Fear set in.

As writers, it’s easy for us to tell one another to just keep writing when they’ve hit a wall. We know that’s what we need to do – push through, power on. It’s that way with anything we face in life. Face the music and then move ahead, otherwise we find ourselves wallowing in the mire. Stuck and sinking fast. If we flop around long enough, we’ll give up and be sucked under.SCAMMED

Whether you’ve hit a snag in your thought process or failed to receive that contract you’d hoped for – when you experience a rough patch it gets hard to peck at the keyboard. Don’t worry. Here are some tips to help you plow through the dark times and reemerge on the other side.

  1. Decide to take action and then do it. Make a conscious effort to have movement in your writing – be it a blog post, a facebook post, article or reading. But decide to move and then move.
  2. Take a walk. Get outside in the sunshine. It’s a proven fact that the sunlight helps trigger the brain to produce serotonin and serotonin is the hormone that boosts mood, calmness, and focus. Our bodies need the right balance of light and darkness. So go for a walk soak in some sun.
  3. Practice good self-talk. Write yourself notes and stick them through the house. Remind yourself of the good things in your life. Decide not to worry about the bad . . . and good nural pathways will form in the brain. You’ll literally wipe away the negative.
  4. Learn forgiveness. Get your head around the fact we are imperfect people. We all make mistakes and hit hard times, so learn to forgive yourself or the person who’s caused you the pain. Move past. What is done is done and no matter what we do, it’s can’t be undone. Think of Disney’s movie Frozen and Let it Go.
  5. Learn from your mistake and then put steps in place to help you veer the other direction the next time you run upon the temptation.
  6. Finally, that old writer word-to-the-wise: Just write. Do it. If you learn to throw the emotion you are experiencing into your writing it will be some of the most amazing work you will ever produce – raw, touching, impacting. There is wisdom in those words . . . JUST WRITE.

It was enough to BE scammed by someone else, but it’s worse to scam yourself by believing the lies we tell ourselves.  Rise above the scam and write your very best.

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