Facing doubt

Anyone coming into this creative realm has to know that it’s not all “fun,” and, in many ways, the further into it you go and the more successful you become, the more the challenges intensify.

Dave Brosha

One unsettling aspect of the reinvention process is facing doubts. Doubts abound as we take on creative endeavours that are different from what we have engaged in before in our lives. Questions of competence can plague us and derail our dreams if we let them.

I have looked at the opportunity to develop a writing practice and to follow my interests and passions after retiring from full time work as both a gift and at times, a curse.

No one told me how much effort it takes to learn a new skill and to develop your craft. Writing is a solitary profession where feedback can be non-existent and the aloneness aspect can be overwhelming. The feedback and achievement loops that we become used to in our regular work lives, don’t exist in the same form in the writing world.

Quite the opposite actually. Rejection is purported to be the rule rather than the exception. I have even set a goal around the number of rejections I hope to receive this year. Seems a bit topsy turvy from the world I just left.

The time required for learning the craft of writing can be a sacrifice that isn’t understood when you start. The self-imposed pressure to produce and to find some type of rythym for writing can be draining. At times, I have felt like stopping before I even start.

How do you develop strategies to remain creatively energized and work through the process of bad writing until you find the hidden gems through the editing process.

Writers can form a community of support around you and it is critical to choose those who are actually interested in your success rather than putting themselves above where you are currently at with your struggle.

Facing doubt seems to be a part of the process and getting through it has a learning curve all on it’s own. Approaching this work with a light heart, an intense curiosity about the world around me, and a healthy sense of humour have been the strategies that have worked best for me so far.

What keeps you going when doubt seems overwhelming?

2 thoughts on “Facing doubt

  1. Whenever I start worrying or taking it too seriously, I remind myself that I’m doing this to have fun and to practice writing. They’re not all going to be winners but the only way to become a better writer is to keep publishing!


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