Wisdom Workout


A Reader Turns to Writing

By Susan Velasquez

Reading is a pleasure that I’ve enjoyed since I was a child.

My mother was unable to say no to door-to-door salespeople and as a result we had an entire series of encyclopedia’s that came with a bonus set of fairy tales from many different lands.

I devoured them. I would close the door to my room; lay out 25 cents worth of candy that I bought from the local candy store with part of my allowance, and dive into the stories.

Hours were spent with characters that faced dangerous challenges that required tapping into their instinctual wisdom and finding the courage to make the right choices.

There were gross punishments for greed, hatred, meanness, stupidity and laziness. True love and happily-ever-after came in surprising and gratifying ways for the heroes and terrible consequences for the wicked, the cruel, the selfish and those that lacked kindness and compassion for the downtrodden.

There was a moral tucked carefully into every tale. Sometimes the message was blatant but more often there were subtleties that warned about making hasty, self-serving decisions, or being impatient, or seeking the big prize and then discovering it to be a trap rather than a door to freedom.

I was a reader. I didn’t write until I was an adult. I didn’t want to commit my personal thoughts to paper that someone could see and judge harshly. I didn’t want to be misunderstood. I was already overly sensitive to criticism and didn’t want to attract more of it by my own hand. I was given a diary and tried to write in it but it felt too dangerous. If I did write my thoughts and feelings, I would destroy the evidence by scribbling over the words right after making them visible.

It took quite some time for me to finally let go of the angst created by my own self-judgments. It was a major accomplishment when I finally gave myself permission to write my book. I had a successful track record of writing seminars but when I started writing my weekly column titled “Unleash The Power of Your Intuition” 15 years ago, I can still remember the discomfort every Friday when the paper was published and I knew people would be reading it. Initially, the biggest challenge was to turn in a photo that would identify me as the writer.

I have a notion that when you have a love of reading, you probably also have a secret desire to write.

The stumbling blocks are usually that you want to be an instant “good writer”, or even worse, a perfect or great writer. You might be afraid of grammatical errors. Maybe you were told early on that your writing lacked continuity, punctuation, correct sentence structure, or God forbid, a unique point of view. In other words, you internalized judgments made by others.

This coming year may be the perfect time for you to seek out and court the secret pleasures that are in store for those of you who are willing to entertain a new relationship with both reading and writing.

Everyone has a story to tell. The challenge may be to find the voice, your voice, to tell it in.


Susan writes and produces personal development seminars and is the author of Beyond Intellect: Journey Into the Wisdom of Your Intuitive Mind. Reach her at: susanvelasquez.com or: 949- 494-7773.


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