I am always surprised by the number of self help books on how to be creative, how to find your voice, or how to create your own road to success. For the most part these books provide a glimpse into what really worked for one individual. They offer insights into a creator’s, entrepreneur’s, or spiritual motivator’s own feelings of success. They are great in that there are things that can be applied to the readers life. They can offer motivation. They can offer some best practices.
What they can’t do is provide one to one applicable practice for creating success in the reader’s own life. The idea that any of these self-help/motivational books will point you on the road to [insert personal freedom here] is absolute bollocks.
I’m not discounting the genre. I find there are some writers that are great in providing generalities to their own practice, and make it clear that is what worked for them. It’s more of a “Here’s what I did. Maybe you can find some of this helpful.” road. Anything more than that I find has no real credence to my life. The author’s haven’t been where I’ve been. They haven’t faced my struggles, and more importantly I have not faced theirs.
However, I think the example that needs to be taken away is that those writers have dared. They didn’t know what they were doing was going to work. Half of them fell into success through pure accident.
Maybe that is what trail blazing really is. Just being in the right moment for the right accident. It’s kind of liberating when you stop to think that no matter how much you try to control a course, you wind up just travelling through a road of accidents. How you swerve, avoid them, or just plain crash headlong into them can change your point of view in ways that will leave you breathless.