This has gone through your head, hasn’t it? I know it has. You know that you want to write but then the fear and the doubt creeps in, takes the pen from your hand and tells you to go sit down and stop getting ideas above your station. I know this because this is one of the biggest things people tell me whilst also telling me how much they would LOVE to write.
It might not just be that you believe you can’t write. It could be a belief you hold on to that everything needs to be perfect before you write, that you need to ensure you know everything before you start, a fear of failure, or a fear of success, you don’t think the time is right, the environment is right, your house is tidy enough… whatever it is, it all comes back to the little voice in our heads telling us do NOT put yourself out there.
Ultimately you are lacking the self-belief that you can do it – and you shouldn’t be!
And I get it, I totally get it! Even though I have had a book published, articles published, a short play performed, a First Class Honours degree in Creative Writing, been accepted to Cambridge University and write an award-winning blog, I still have that same little voice nagging in the back of my head telling me that I can’t do it and I’m not good enough!
So if you are feeling it, remember – feeling ‘the fear’ is fine. It’s normal. But you can never let fear control you because then it distracts you, demotivates you and will leave you regretting things you’ve never done. Take control. Get those thoughts and fears out. Dispel them by using them to fuel your writing.
Write about what you are afraid of. What could go wrong? What’s the worst possible outcome? But then write about why you are going to do it anyway. Write a list of all the amazing things you are going to gain from writing. Acceptance. Understanding. Perception. Control. Creative living. A place for your stories and memories. Ten minutes out of your day when it is just about you and your thoughts. The ability to control your own narrative… write down anything that is positive. In fact, do that now…
Write a list, right now, of at least 5 things you will gain from writing…. Go!
Amother idea… Whenever your inner critic comes screeching into your mind, make a note of what they are saying, give yourself some time to reflect on it and then write your critic a letter, giving them some advice on how to be kinder.
Another common thing people tell me when they are asking about blogging or sharing their story is – but there are already so many blogs about cancer / serious illness / make-up / whatever it is you want to blog about, out there!
And I always reply with this… Yes, there probably are BUT only you can tell your story your way. Only you know what it was like going through the things you have been through. Only you know how you feel about certain books / make-up / parenting. Only you can write that specific piece of creative fiction. And if you don’t tell it, you are denying the world from hearing what you have to say.
Don’t worry about what other people are doing – just worry about all the awesome stuff that you are doing.
Sometimes it’s just about giving ourselves permission to write. So take this, here and now, as your permission to write and to allow writing to help and heal you.
There is always going to be a day when you start. Everyone, even JK Rowling started at the beginning, having never had anything published, looking at a blank page, wondering if anyone was ever going to give a shit. Is the first thing you ever write going to be exceptionally amazing – maybe not, but it is going to be a hell of a lot better than a blank page! Seriously, no one is ever going to read that!
Happy Writing! x
P.S. I wanna read what you are writing so if you have a blog / book / anything, please leave the link in the comments below so that we can all take a look.