By Bryan Cohen
”When I’m talking about belief, why do you always assume I’m talking about God?”
Shepherd Book, Serenity
As I was growing up, my parents with the help of our Jewish faith, taught me the difference between right and wrong. They taught me to believe in God and that God was good and that if I behaved well that everything would turn out fine. I think that the religious belief system I learned growing up was a pretty good one and I would call myself a relatively moral person at least partly as a result of this upbringing. It tied into my beliefs of true love and destiny that I learned from books and movies.
The thing is, as Shepherd Book points out, belief doesn’t just have to be about God. I learned a lot of religious beliefs I connected with as a kid, but I didn’t learn many beliefs about myself through that process. What I’d learned was that being good would directly lead to me being a successful and happy person. I later supplemented this belief once I picked up some complementary belief systems.
Adding another belief system to my life, The Law of Attraction (from the movie “The Secret” and many different books) helped me to realize that gratitude, positivity and visualization helped to solidify the things I wanted in my life. A belief I learned from blogger and medium Erin Pavlina taught me to believe that there is no such thing as a stranger, there are only friends you haven’t met yet. This belief made everybody around me much friendlier and it has led to several opportunities and relationships that have improved my level of success.
The most important belief system I’ve adopted is that I can accomplish the goals I want to in my life if I just go toward the things I’m afraid of instead of running away from them. I need to e-mail that successful blogger and ask for a guest post. I should call that amazing writer and request some advice. I need to push myself to the limit and go 100% for a project, instead of half-assing it and then blaming failure on my lack of effort. If I fail, so what! At least I’ll learn something and I’ll get closer and closer to achieving my goals.
Now let’s keep in mind, that the character who said the quote above, was also a man of the cloth. Shepherd Book, like myself, believes in God, but he recognizes that both those who do and do not believe in a higher power, still need to believe in something. In my opinion, this means that different ways of thinking can come from all sorts of sources and still be in some way connected to God. Not everything I’ve learned in life has come from a religious text, but that doesn’t mean that things weren’t guided by an outside force. Or a Joss Whedon movie.
Regardless, belief is a major part of success and if you apply it to your life, you may find things beginning to click into place.
Bryan Cohen is giving away 100 personalized writing prompts to one giveaway entrant chosen at random during the blog tour. Personalized prompts are story starters that cater specifically to a writer’s subject matter, strengths/weaknesses, etc. Cohen will create the prompts to cater exclusively to the winner. He is giving away free digital copies of his book The Writing Sampler to everybody who enters, which includes excerpts from each of his four books on writing. The book contains essays, writing prompts and tips and tricks to enhance your writing skills. In addition, for each of Cohen’s books that reach the Top 500 on Amazon during his blog tour, he will add a $50 Amazon gift card to the drawing (up to six $50 cards in total)!
To enter, simply post a comment to this blog post with your e-mail address. Entries will be counted through June 2nd, 2011.
Bryan Cohen is a writer, actor and comedian from Dresher, Pennsylvania. Since graduating from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill he has written four books. His writing and motivation website Build Creative Writing Ideas has had over 100,000 visitors since it was founded in December 2008.Learn more about his work here:
Bryan was the head writer for an un-produced Web series:Covenant Coffee. He lives in Chicago, Illinois.
1,000 Creative Writing Prompts: Ideas for Blogs, Scripts, Stories and More
500 Writing Prompts for Kids: First Grade through Fifth Grade
Sharpening the Pencil: Essays on Writing, Motivation, and Enjoying your Life
Writer on the Side: How to Write Your Book Around Your 9 to 5 Job
Chekhov Kegstand: A Dorm Room Dramedy in Two Acts
Follow Bryan on Twitter: @buildcwideas
It was a pleasure having you here Bryan. Thanks! And the rest of you...start writing. Now!!