Now that I’ve touch on fear, it’s time to touch on another bad boy.
Now this is another biggy, it’s probably bigger than fear itself. Self doubt is just as debilitating but in a different way completely. Self-doubt is what keeps a writer from publishing anything or showing it to anyone who can tear them down. We never know if we’re good enough and we stick to the fact that we think we’re not. Writing is a skill, it’s an art. It takes time to get right and many seem to forget that. Self-doubt is around when you have days that are terrible and you can’t seem to find your way out. I still have days like that. I’m not going to lie and tell you I have none.
There are some days where I can’t bring myself up to the computer and put anything down because my self esteem is so dead and my sense of worth is gone. I moved to be a writer, I am a writer, but even I’m not perfect. Published authors will tell you that through the early stages of their new pieces of work that they aren’t confident with it. Writer’s are mostly humble people. We are realistic. It’s what we’re told over and over again and it’s something that stays within me. JK Rowling is a perfect example. She is humble and probably has some self doubt. It’s hard not to.
But the real remedy is to stop beating yourself up. So you’re having a crappy day and nothing you’re writing is coming out right, keep going, keep writing. Those feelings will pop up again some other time but you’ll be ready for them. You’ll know what to do.
Right now I’ve having a moment where I think that I can’t possibly get this manuscript done, but that’s on the tail end of a crappy half of a day. When things go wrong the first thing I critique and run from is my art. I doubt my skills and my passion and that’s not okay. I am good. I may not be the best wordsmith out there but I have the passion behind them.
To me writing is not work. I’m not sure if it ever will be (there are days where I question this but I’m making choosing to ignore that right now ha!), as long as I love it. It’s a passion. And so it should be. If someone doesn’t likes my words, that’s their problem, it shouldn’t lead to me questioning myself. They can’t own me or my words.
Next time you’re feeling a little bit of self-doubt, sit down, write it out, what does it feel like? What is it telling you to do? Got that? Not tell it to go and jump; to do something more constructive than annoying you with it’s bullshit. You are better than that, remember it.