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How I finished my 700-page book-2004

Mystery question: as you read this story, 

guess the life principles that are expressed. My answers are at the end.

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Writing my book was easy for the first two years

In the year 2000, while residing in Tokyo, I embarked on writing my book about courage during my free time. Progress was smooth sailing, as I shared the essays I had written with friends and clients. Both Dwight-Next and Dwight-Now were happy. Then in early 2002 an obstacle emerged.

Dwight-Now was not willing to continue

The preliminary writing of the book, consisting mostly of essays, had been completed. However, the time had come to meticulously review every line and consider how to enhance both the English and the comprehensibility of each idea. Dwight-Next was elated with the progress thus far and eager to push forward with finishing and publishing the book. Nevertheless, Dwight-Now found the notion of "editing the book" tedious and unappealing.

A fundamentally new approach to persistence

Previously, I may have attempted to coerce Dwight-Now to push forward, or Dwight-Next might have thrown in the towel and pointed the finger at Dwight-Now for being uncooperative. However, with a bit more wisdom than before, Dwight-Next knew that the key to success was to pose a different question: "How can we make the editing process enjoyable for Dwight-Now?"

It took three weeks to come up with an idea that Dwight-Now liked

As I pondered over the question of how Dwight-Now could find pleasure in editing the book, I eventually had an epiphany. Since I was residing in Shanghai at the time, I decided to post an advertisement on a local website for a "book listener." Happily, I received a multitude of responses from eager young Chinese yearning to improve their English by listening to a native speaker. I even offered a token fee to sweeten the deal.

A young Chinese woman (several ended up working with me this way) would come to sit beside me as I worked on my computer. At first, I lied to her by saying that she was there to make suggestions on how to improve the English in my essays. However, after a few days had passed without any suggestions from her (as the nuances of the language were beyond her current level), she expressed guilt over her lack of usefulness.

But by that time, we had established a rapport, and I knew she felt safe and comfortable around me. I revealed the truth to her and said, "You're helping me immensely! With you, an attractive and young Chinese woman listening to me as I read, I can find enjoyment in anything!"

My anonymous "co-writers"

I owe a debt of gratitude to several young Chinese women who aided me in completing and publishing my book on courage in July 2004. Without their assistance, I doubt I could have finished this mammoth project that I am incredibly proud of. The four-year journey of writing my book was a true joy, and I credit its success to my unwavering commitment to maintaining my Now-Next integrity throughout the entire process.

Underlying principles that guided my actions

Next learning to respect Now

The process of writing my book on courage was a significant milestone in my life. It was not just a remarkable achievement in itself, but it also brought about a profound realization regarding the significance of aligning our Now and our Next. This breakthrough was centered on the idea that in order to achieve this harmony, it is vital for Next to learn to acknowledge and value Now.

How lying is sometimes helpful or essential to creating win-win for everyone

Had I revealed my true intentions to the young Chinese women right from the start, it probably would have made them uneasy and caused them to decline the position of a "book listener." Instead, by lying to them first and telling the truth later, it gave me a chance to build rapport with them and for them to have confidence that I was a "safe" man. It was then that I could tell them the real reason why I needed a "book listener" and they were fine with it. To my relief, none of them showed any signs of being upset for my initial deception.

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