Lessons from Boot Camp – Never Give Up

Michelle Hillstrom Boot Camp Photo 2005 Oscar Company 4009

As an indie author, there are frequent moments of frustration, doubt, and questioning if all the work is worth it. Sometimes during this author journey I have wanted to give up because it felt like I wasn’t getting anywhere. No one was reading or buying my books, I felt like a talentless fraud, and doubted that I would ever succeed as an author. Sometimes it felt like I would never finish writing whatever book I was currently working on.

During dark times like those, I think back to 2005 when I was going through Marine Corps Boot Camp on Parris Island. It taught me the importance of fortitude, perseverance, and resilience like nothing else ever has.

As a recruit undergoing the toughest basic training in the military, I was frequently exhausted, hungry, homesick, cold, sore, sometimes in pain and physically sick, confused, and scared. We were being yelled at 24/7, no matter what we did it was wrong, and it felt like there was just no way to succeed. Some days it felt like we were never going to make it. We were told that we were nasty, unworthy, and so many other derogatory things meant to break us down.

Often I would want to quit, thinking that this wasn’t for me. I didn’t want to do it anymore. I didn’t want to keep going through the abuse, the grueling workouts, the cold, the hunger, the ice cold showers in the dead of winter, the back and ankle breaking hikes, the sand-fleas eating me alive, the runs that feel like your heart and lungs will give out before you make it to the finish line.

But the thing about boot camp is that you have no choice but to keep going. There is no quitting. There is no deciding that you just don’t want to do it anymore. Your only choice is to keep putting one foot in front of the other. Keep waking up and going through it again and again each morning until graduation.

And despite how often it felt like there was no way that I would succeed, there was no way that I would become a Marine, and despite all the people in my life that doubted me going in, I did make it. I did graduate, and I did earn the title of Marine.

Everyone has their own moments in life that they thought they would never make it through or that they would never succeed. The next time you are feeling that way about your writing career I want you to think back on those moments in your life where you were doubting yourself and thinking that you couldn’t do it and remember that you did, and the same will apply to your writing and publishing.

Never give up. You can and will succeed.

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Share in the comments what memory you will use to keep you motivated. When was a time that you thought about quitting but didn’t?

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Until next time, my friends!


2 thoughts on “Lessons from Boot Camp – Never Give Up

Add yours

  1. Am definitely feeling this way about my writing now, but your post really inspired me to stick to it. I try my best to conquer each day, but some days are tougher than others, and I really could not have stumbled across your story at a better time. Thanks for this!

    Liked by 1 person

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