The paralysis that fear causes. Fear of messing up. Fear of failing. Fear of taking the wrong step, of making the wrong choice when you’re writing.
The paralysis strikes when trying out for a gig and you want to impress the folks offering the gig. Or you’ve got the gig and you want to continue to shine, to be the golden child.
In both cases, you start to second guess yourself. You start doubting you can do the job. You have a hard time starting to write. Or maybe you can’t write at all. The fear paralyzes you.
Yes, I’m speaking from experience. I’ve been hit by that paralysis more times in my career than I care to admit.
How can you get around that fear? How can you stop the paralysis before it begins? The first step is to believe in yourself and in your abilities. Unless what you’re doing involves a type of writing that you’ve never attempted before, you can do it. You’ll just need to be a bit more disciplined, a bit more focused than usual.
Understand that not everything you write will be great. Sometimes, what you write will be good. At other times, you’ll produce some workmanlike writing. It might not blow peoples’ socks off, but it will be good enough. Accept that, but remember to keep striving to make your writing the best that it can be.
Finally, talk to other writers about your concerns. Chances are that they’ve gone through what you’re experiencing. They might just be able to give you some advice and encouragement.
Thoughts? As always, your comments are welcome.
Photo credit: wagg66