|Hardwick Hall Garden, Derbyshire - Maria A Smith|
Do you sometimes feel a bit of a fraud? Think to yourself, 'Who am I kidding? I'm not a writer, I'm not writing any words. I'm a failure, I should pack it in and forget about writing a novel.' This is a mindset amongst writers that is much more common than you think. Many feel they're failing, but it is possible to turn these thoughts and fears around.
Here are three hacks that will help you to overcome self doubt and allow you to celebrate your successes.
- Shut Your Inner-Critic Up - When the voice in your head tells you you're no good and you can't do this, you must tell it the very opposite. Say to yourself, out-loud if it's possible 'I can do this, I'm in control and I'm learning and growing everyday.' When the voice says you've messed that up, respond with, 'Okay, that hasn't worked, but I can do this!' Use self-talk to flip negatives into positives. It really works.
- Write Yourself a Reverse 'To Do List' - An Achievement List - Instead of a huge list of all the writing tasks you've got to do this week - write a list of all your past achievements, and put it on view somewhere where you're going to see it regularly. Stick it on the fridge, or on the wall near to where you write. You'll still need your 'to do list' for the week ahead but having your achievement list nearby will remind you that you're a writer and you can do it!
- Shift Your Perspective - If you're disappointed because you haven't done any writing this week, then you need to shift your perspective. It's a state of mind that can be shifted. Being disappointed or doubting yourself is a sign that you really care about something in the first place, and that's a positive thing. Start telling yourself about the brilliant things you've already done this week. It might not be three thousand new words on your novel, but you may have listened to a helpful podcast on outlining or helped a writing buddy out with their writing, or ran a writing group session. Sometimes, we have to make allowances, but there is usually something writing related that we have done.
Break through those blocks that are making you feel inadequate, turn 'can't into 'can' and celebrate your successes, no matter how small.