How to Master your Inner Editor

How to Master your Inner Editor

Let’s talk about this Inner Editor and how to master them. It’s called a bunch of names: inner critic, mean girl/boy, perfectionist, ego etc. but it still has the same role, it’s almost like a figment of your imagination, but of course we know it’s not. Your Inner Editor thrives on the inner turmoil that rocks your foundations when it comes to your writing.

They smile at the pain it can bring to your writing life and are fuelled by making you doubt yourself and your abilities.

Your Inner Editor is there to strike you down when you think that you’re on the top of the world, or that you’ve written something that is epically amazing.

They tell you things like:

  • It’s not good enough.

  • What were you thinking with that sentence?

  • Who would read that?

  • That’s a piece of junk?

  • You call yourself a writer? Psh!

  • Who would want to work with you after that piece?

And so on.

Inner Editors are the epitome of bullies and it’s worse than an physical bully, because you can’t just tell them to shut up and walk away from them. You can’t put physical distance between them, which makes it harder to comprehend when they pop up.

But let’s get down and dirty with our Inner Editors, they don’t need to run out lives. In fact we can learn to work with them but to do that we actually have to accept that they’re apart of our process.

Imagine that you’re in a dark room and that all you have is a torch to see. Switch it on. What do you have?

A room, it’s full of stuff right? But what if it was actually the home of your Inner Editor? What if this was the very place that they were most at home at, how would you deal with that? What would you do?

You should find them. Actively look for your Inner Editor and tell them that they don’t rule you. Because they don’t.

And the biggest trick there? Your Inner Editor is not you. They are a completely different entity. Would you tell your loved one that they were stupid and couldn’t do anything right when they did a chore out of love? Or brought home take away? Or maybe was on cat duty while you were away for work? No! You’d be ungrateful and selfish.

Your Inner Editor is a complete entity that lives in your head to make you doubt yourself and the first step to claiming back your writing it so acknowledge that.

Your writing is never going to be perfect, because every bit of writing you do it actually rewriting and you can rewrite a piece and over and over again and it’ll always be different and something that is slightly different and once you accept that, you’ll find that your Inner Editor starts to quieten down.

You also need an unwavering ability to believe in your writing. Yeah you’ll have off days where things are crap, but you’ll also have really good days that involve hitting all of your action scenes right, or writing your kick ass blog post or even just a journal entry. Every bit of writing you do it something that can be critiqued by your Inner Editor and with your own belief, that yes, you’re worth it, you can achieve whatever you put your mind to.

Inner Editors also play the role of making you judge everything that is slipping from your fingers, they are making sure that you stay small and in doing so they make sure that you doubt yourself. The best method to getting past that? Using mantras. I know it sounds a bit woowoo and weird but they help. I know they help me. Try this one:

I let go of judging myself. I am perfect, whole and complete, just as I am.

Or this one for your writing.

I let go of judgement and accept that this is a draft of what’s to come.

To really get rid of your Inner Editor, you need to sit down and remember your why. It’s the core belief that keeps you going. I encourage my clients to write for them, not for an audience, because if you don’t write for you, then you’re missing your mark. I write the things I wish I could have read because I know that as a teenager and stumbling adult, there were things that I wanted to explore, lives to live and people to meet.

If you’re not writing for yourself, you’re cutting yourself short here. You won’t believe in what you’re writing and it’s going to make anything you do hard. Check back to soon to see how you can set your intentions there.

And my last, and biggest tip on how to smack back your Inner Editor, is a writing journal. I know, I know I keep saying that it’s great, but how does it work? I’ll go into detail about it in another post but briefing it’s all about being able to pick up from where you left off last in your writing session and picking right back up without reading over what you’ve already written. After writing what you covered in your last session at the end of that session, you read over what you’ve got and start for the day.

Smack bang, you’re beating your Inner Editor with the simplest of tricks. Sign up below to grab your free writing journal.

Here’s a quick wrap up of how to beat back your Inner Editor:

  1. Your Inner Editor isn’t you

  2. All writing is rewriting, accepting that make it easier to understand

  3. You need unwavering belief in your writing

  4. Don’t judge yourself

  5. Connect to your why

  6. Use a Writing Journal

But most importantly, you have to remember that your writing is amazing, yeah it’ll take a few times to get it right, but it’s amazing and unique to you.

Leave me a comment below about how your Inner Editor shows up and if you’re trying one of the above tactics to kick it back

Mandi is a writer, reader, dreamer and is breaking procrastinating inner editors, one at a time.

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