There is no doubt about it. If you want to build a strong and fulfilling writing business that sustains success for the long-term — mindset means everything.

Think about it. If you put professionally-developed writing and business-building programs into the hands of two people with similar career goals, who is going to land the best clients, build a dynamic business, and achieve more success?

Some say the person with the better attitude will achieve greater success. Others will say it’s a matter of luck. However, luck is where opportunity and being prepared come together. And, the fusion of being prepared and creating opportunities is all about having a better attitude — and taking lots of action.

With that issue settled, the question becomes: How do you create and maintain a better mindset? Here are 5 inside secrets that will motivate and inspire you to develop and maintain the type of attitude that attracts clients and success throughout your writing career.

Secret #1: Believe You Deserve Writing Success

Building a successful writing business begins inside you. It begins with the heartfelt belief that you deserve success. In your life, have you ever:

  • Received good grades in school?
  • Been named to an all-star sports team?
  • Earned an award of excellence (of any kind)?
  • Received a referral from a satisfied customer?
  • Earned a promotion or raise?

Think about your proudest accomplishments. You undoubtedly believed you deserved them. You had a strong belief that you could accomplish your goals, and that internal belief was actually the springboard for your achievements.

On the flip side, you’ve probably never really achieved things when you didn’t believe you could.

Put simply, building a successful writing career begins with a strong internal belief that you will accomplish your goals no matter what obstacles might arise.

Secret #2: Set Your Intentions

How many times in your life have you said: “Be careful what you wish for, you just might get it.”

Most of us have heard this expression or said it ourselves countless times. Why do we use this expression so often? Because deep down inside, we instinctively believe it.

How about this expression: “(Fill in the blank) has never happened to me — knock on wood.”

We’ve all related this expression to car accidents, illness, and other bad things that can happen to us. We utter the phrase “knock on wood” because we truly believe that by merely talking about a negative incident out loud, we can actually attract it into our lives.

Another expression I love is: “Worrying is praying for what you don’t want.”

To some degree, we all believe we can attract things into our lives by thinking, speaking, and having feelings about them.

Put this power to work for you!

Set your intentions on the exact writing career goals you’d like to achieve and focus every day on having them come into your life.

Secret #3: Ask for Big Things and Expect to Receive Them

As a small child, you intuitively had big dreams.

You didn’t dream about growing up to be a local City Council Member. You dreamed about being President of the United States.

You didn’t dream about being a good player on your local softball team. You dreamed about being an All-Star Major League Baseball Player.

You didn’t dream about being an actress in a small play at a 70-seat theater in your local strip mall. You dreamed about being an Academy Award Winning Actress in a major motion picture.

And, you fully expected to receive all these things. Nobody discouraged you because you were a little kid. But then, as you got older, you were told it was, “time to grow up and think realistically.”

Do you think folks like Steven Spielberg, Oprah Winfrey, and Bill Gates listened to this lousy advice? Of course they didn’t — and neither should you.

As a kid, you dreamed big and expected your dreams to come true. It came naturally to you. Recapture this intuitive gift you were born with and apply it to your writing goals.

You were born with a natural ability to think big, so use it! Remember, the first 100-floor skyscraper didn’t come into existence because someone dreamed about a 75-floor skyscraper.

Secret #4: Focus Your Thoughts on What You Want

This section builds on the three previous points. You need to believe you deserve success, you must set your intentions, and you have everything to gain by dreaming big. However, it’s important that you focus on these things all the time!

You can stand on a mountaintop and declare your career intentions at the top of your lungs, but if walk back down the mountain thinking to yourself, “Oh, who’d want to hire a guy like me,” you are in trouble.

Focus on what you want all the time. A great way to do this is by developing affirmations you can repeat throughout the day that keep you in a positive state of mind. As the following examples show, these affirmations can be very simple.

“I am a nationally-known and highly-respected writer.”

“My services are in constant demand, so I can charge higher rates.”

“I have a high-paying and highly-satisfying writing career.”

You don’t have to go nuts or get weird with this, but if you repeat positive thoughts throughout your day, I guarantee you will feel more powerful. When you feel more powerful, you achieve more than you do when you feel weak or doubtful. It’s that simple.

You have the power and freedom to choose your thoughts. Focusing your thoughts in an empowering way will definitely help you. Having negative, depressing thoughts about your writing business will not help you at all.

So what kind of thoughts are you going to choose? It’s a no-brainer.

Always reach for better-feeling thoughts. Focus on what you really want for yourself. You can also consider starting an affirmation board to help keep you on track.

Think about your goals and dreams in a positive way and you will feel a flow of new ideas come to you that propel you into inspired actions that lead to writing success!

Secret #5: Take Inspired Actions — Now!

The first four points have been about building positive thoughts. Now I am going to teach you how such thoughts lead to taking inspired actions.

Positive thoughts fuel your intuition, or inner voice, or gut instinct — whatever you choose to call it.

Don’t believe you have a powerful inner voice? Well, you do. How many times in your life have you found yourself saying something like:

“My gut instinct told me to do A, but I did B instead and it didn’t work out. I should have listened to my gut.”

When you set your intentions, believe you deserve success, dream big, and focus on what you really want — you will be amazed at how many messages your “gut” sends your way about inspired actions you can take to achieve greater career success.

These messages will be like stepping-stones that roll out before you one-by-one as you journey towards your goals. You’ll be inspired with ideas about:

  • Who to call to inquire about work
  • What business organizations to join
  • Which former colleagues might be of help to you
  • What immediate actions you can take to learn more

We have all experienced this rush of positive direction at points in our lives when we have pursued certain endeavors with a great deal of passion.

Here is an example from my life. When I was 29, I decided to transition from being a computer operator to a writer. Within five months, I built a writing portfolio, read several books on writing (Bob Bly books, of course), joined two marketing associations, and landed a job as a writer at a healthcare company.

I’m sure you can think back to moments in your life when things flowed together for you in a similar manner. The reason they did was because you were focused on what you wanted, you held positive beliefs about achieving your goals, and you listened to your inner voice as it inspired you to take actions that led you to where you wanted to go.

Recapture this inner power and put it to work for you as you build your writing business. This natural ability is like a muscle. Work at it a little every day and over time, it gets stronger and stronger.


Fundamentally, achieving a writing success mindset is not hard to do. It starts by believing in yourself, setting an intention for success, and then following up with positive thoughts and actions.

In practice, this may take time. But consistently focusing on the steps I’ve shared here will make a big difference as you build your writing business. Cultivating the right mindset will help you overcome whatever obstacles might come up, and help you seize the rich opportunities that I know are waiting for you.