BELA LAMPERT

Yoga Instructor
Optioned Screenwriter

It’s Always Darkest Before Dawn

I love this line from "Batman The Dark Knight" although I'm pretty sure Christopher Nolan didn't invent the phrase. My interpretation of the phrase is that often things tend to get worse before they get better. The worsening is part of the healing so to speak. My yoga teacher used to say, "the spot gets bigger first". What she meant was when you have a spot on your shirt and you start to clean it, the first thing that happens is that it gets bigger. It looks like things are worsening, and maybe they are, but that's part of the process. You're moving in the right direction. Take your writing for example. Let's say, you have a draft in place and you give it to someone for feedback. That person points out something that doesn't work and now that you see it you totally agree. Now, having a new insight about your story, you see that you have completely new possibilities to make it better. But in order to do that, the first thing that you need to do is tear it apart. So, first you need to make a big "mess" out of it, brainstorm new possibilities how the newly found bits fit together in a dramatic way. So, it might look as you're moving backwards, as if it's "getting worse". Because you had the story finished and now you have a big mess. But that's not true. Sometimes moving forward means you must wade through the dirt first in order to come out shiny the other end. How...

Do You Accept?

You can't control your environment. Or at least, almost none of it. But you can control your reaction to it. If someone is offering you stress (bosses come to mind, …) you can decide if you accept it or not. It has nothing to do with the task. If you do manage to do a task stress-free you will be done even quicker because you focus on the task only, without thinking about what else you should do and about possible negative consequences that don't happen anyway. So, if your boss offers you stress and you don't accept it, guess who it stays with? How to learn not to accept stress from other people?Become part of my "Yoga for Writers" program:(To get the link to the "Yoga for Writers" Program sign up for my daily emails on this website and check the P.S. section of the Welcome email!) ...

Be Egoistic

Being egoistic somehow has become something negative. "Oh, he's so egoistic, he's only thinking about himself." We hear, "be there for others", "be helpful" and all this kinds of things. Yes, be all those things. But first of all, you need a healthy dose of egoism. And here's why. If you take good care of yourself, treat yourself well and make sure you are emotionally strong and self-centered (in a good way), then you can help others. It's like on the airplane. When you lose cabin pressure and the oxygen masks fall down, what do they tell you to do? Take care of yourself first, get your mask, pull it on, make sure it sits tight and it works. Then, and only then, help people next to you if necessary. If you do it the other way round you are a helpful person for sure, but you might as well dying in trying to help the person next to you and if you don't succeed that person will die too. So, how does that apply to situations where it's not about oxygen masks? Some examples: Sleep enough if possible. Sleep and rest is always a good investment in your health and emotional wellbeing. And if you feel better you will be a happier person and you as well as others will appreciate it. Value your work. If you have a side project going (it may be your writing or something else) that you're passionate about, try doing it before you go to work, not afterwards. Use your best energy for your self...

How to Fail Often And Fast

How to Fail Often And Fast One of the things that holds many people back from real advancement is that they don't fail enough. Or not fast enough. Let me explain. On our way to finding out what works and what doesn't, what we like and what not, what we're successful at and what not, we need to try out a couple of things. Sometimes we want something, not realizing it's not the thing for us. And when it fails we're devastated. But in hindsight we're glad because it opened the doors for something else. Whatever it is you're failing at, the moment you fail it frees up resources for other things: mentally, emotionally, financially, time-wise, … So, if you want to advance quickly, don't be afraid to fail. Failing shows you the things that don't work. In fact, try to fail fast. Get that "No". That rejection. That note that says, "this doesn't work that way." It frees you up to go ahead so you're not stuck with things you don't want and that don't work. How to get rid of the fear of failing?Become part of my "Yoga for Writers" program:(To get the link to the "Yoga for Writers" Program sign up for my daily emails on this website and check the P.S. section of the Welcome email!) ...

Getting Bad Notes

If you get back bad notes from a producer or publisher about your work. What does that say about you as a person? Nothing. As long as you don't identify with your work, that is. As in, connecting your self-worth with the opinion about your work of others. Why is this important? First of all, you are not your work. What you wrote was somewhere inside you, has to do something with how you experience the world and your opinion about it. And depending on how well that fits with something that a producer or publisher thinks he can sell you might get back "better" or "worse" notes. But those notes are nothing more than that: the opinion of another person under specific circumstances, looking for something specific on a specific day in a specific mood. Tomorrow, circumstances might be completely different. Another person might see it completely different. Being in another mood the same person might see it completely different. Do you see how volatile this opinion is? And even if, let's suppose you get back the same bad note from a couple of feedback sources that you deem trustworthy. What does THAT say about you as a person? Still nothing. What does that say about your ability as a writer? If you accept the feedback (if you get the same or very similar feedback from three different sources you should look into it), you've just found your next area to approve in. And once you've done it you will be a better writer than before. Don't link your self-worth to your writing...

How Is Your Digestion?

Remember the last time you ate something bad, or too much? And your digestion rebelled? Everything that we swallow, be it food, thoughts, or emotions, stays in the body until we can get rid of it. In the case of food it's pretty simple, albeit painful sometimes, but we know how to do it because every now and then we are forced to. (Although I've read that depending on what you eat, some food might stay inside your digestion system and clog you up after some time if you don't do regular detoxing and cleansing. But that's not what this email is about.) The thing is, our thoughts create emotions and those emotions, if we "swallow" them and don't let go of them, create tension in the body. Just try it out for yourself. Think of something or someone that gives you a very negative feeling and observe how your body reacts to it. If you keep having those kinds of negative emotions over and over and over, the tension accumulates in the body. You need to let go of negative emotions. You swallowed them once, and that's understandable, but then after a while they need to pass your body and leave. In the end, you don't want to deal with your tension all the time, you want to be creative, right? You can't be creative if you're swallowing "bad stuff" all the time. You need to free yourself up to let your creativity shine again. How to learn to get rid of bad emotions accumulated in your body?Become part of...

Sometimes It’s Not About You

Sometimes it's about another person. The other person who wants to share happiness, brag, maybe even say or do something that you might consider stupid. Even if you feel compelled to interrupt that person, to right that person, to prove them wrong, to share your thoughts… … even if you're convinced you're right… …sometimes it's just not about you. Let the other person do their thing, let them have the moment. You have nothing to prove. If you know your way, go your way. It's always going to be different than the other person's. You're not in competition with others. How to find your way?Become part of my "Yoga for Writers" program":(To get the link to the "Yoga for Writers" Program sign up for my daily emails on this website and check the P.S. section of the Welcome email!) ...

Are You Worth Your Time?

When you spend time with other people that's an honor for them. You are sharing a part of your lifetime with them.  Are they behaving in a a way that makes you think they are aware of the gift of time you are giving them? And how much of that gift of time are you giving yourself? If you want to find out more about yourself and start awakening that creativity inside of you, you should start honoring yourself first. Give time to yourself first before you give it to others. How to learn to honor yourself more?Become part of my "Yoga for Writers" program":(To get the link to the "Yoga for Writers" Program sign up for my daily emails on this website and check the P.S. section of the Welcome email!) ...

The Things You Don’t Want

The next time when you something you like and you catch yourself thinking, "I want that too", or "I want to be that too"… Stop right there. Do you really want that? Think it through. Maybe you have a fantasy version about what it's like to have that. But that often is just the instagram version of it. The picture on the package. The unrealistic imagination. When you think it further, what consequences has having that thing or being that person? What implications on your life, on your obligations would that have? Do you want those as well? If you still want it, think about the cost. I'm not only talking about the financial cost, but also the personal cost. What would be necessary to get it? Do you still want it? When you consider the "real" perspective of having/being that, the costs involved, and the implications, and you still want it… What are you waiting for? The first step always starts with a decision. A delayed decision is no decision. How to get clear on your decisions?Become part of my "Yoga for Writers" program:(To get the link to the "Yoga for Writers" Program sign up for my daily emails on this website and check the P.S. section of the Welcome email!) ...

Who You Compare To

Who You Compare To When was the last time you declared yourself being stuck? When you had the feeling you weren't moving forward at all and you started questioning things. Things like, "Can I really do this?", "Is writing really for me?", "Why do I getting stuck all the time?", … Things like that. The negative spiral. But what does "moving forward" really mean? It means you are getting closer to where you want to go. Imagine you're on a trip with your car. When you're on the highway you make great progress towards your destination. Then, you get hungry. You stop at a restaurant to eat something. Would you declare yourself stuck at that point? Would you question whether you should do the trip or not? Whether you will reach that goal of yours? Of course not, you're just having a break to rest and get new energy. And then you continue your trip. Another example. On this trip of yours, you get to a point where you don't know how to move ahead. There are several roads to take, you're not sure which one is it. Maybe you even take the wrong one and have to take a detour. Again, would you declare yourself stuck at at that point? No, of course not. The detour also gets you closer to the destination, just on another way. Another example. Still on your road trip, you check how far you've come every five seconds. Every five seconds you take a look at the mile counter. And you say, "It doesn't move. We're not getting...