Success is not Final
How many people have you met who say, ‘oh, I’ve always wanted to write a book.’
I often meet people who have an inspiring story to tell but feel overwhelmed or even confused about where to start. As writers, however, we experience this all the time, it is very common! Being a writer, to me, is like being self-employed with no deadline, no timesheet, and no responsibility, UNLESS you want to be successful. And by successful, I mean reaching realistic goals that you set for yourself, so the real challenge is not where to begin but how to keep going!
Every writer is different, so it’s hard to give general advice on becoming a self-motivated and enthusiastic novelist, columnist, or wordsmith. I can, however, introduce you to the most common reasons that I have found blocks creative freedom in many of the writers I work with.
Self-doubt manifests through feelings of uncertainty regarding one or more aspects of the writing journey. It’s normal to experience feelings of doubt when we are faced with a new writing concept. Most commonly, the enormity of the task at hand is enough to stop the creative flow right from the get-go; writing, editing, more writing, more editing, manuscript submissions, publishing, etc. There’s a lot to consider!
The truth is that feelings of ‘not being good enough’ or having previous negative experiences with writing can have a large negative effect on our self-worth and our ability to complete any creative projects. The first sign of this occurring for a writer is often procrastination or lack of motivation. However, there are ways to combat these feelings and become more confident in ourselves and our writing abilities.
In the mentorship program I offer through Bowerbird Publishing, I work with writers to overcome self-doubt and how positive affirmations can help them daily. Positive affirmations are a way of focusing on the desired outcome and using positive thinking to get there. Furthermore, they can be used as a form of motivation, self-improvement, or just as an internal voice that tells you that you should be doing something. An example of 2 affirmations I use regularly are;
“I have enough, I am enough, I do enough”
“Opportunities will always come my way.”
Tailored to your own desires and goals, positive affirmations help you to feel good about yourself, achieve your goals, and become more optimistic about the future.
Comparing yourself to others.
They say that comparison is the thief of joy. This saying rings true in many ways, especially regarding the self-published author. Comparing yourself or your writing to others can become a very paralyzing feeling, both emotionally and professionally. Everyone’s publishing journey and ideas of success are different. What we can control and focus on is our own path and where we want to take it, regardless of where other people are at or what they have done. It is important, then, to remain on task with your own goals and continue to revisit them often throughout your writing. It’s all about practicing self-compassion and understanding that making mistakes is how we learn and grow.
For a little internal self-compassion boost, I think about my past achievements and how they made me feel to accomplish them. This technique can help to reflect on concrete achievements where something challenging turned into something great. A lot of achievements are born out of initial uncertainty or doubt. It helps to remind ourselves about the times when things have gone right because the same thing could happen in the present moment, regardless of what other writers are achieving.
Another powerful piece of advice I give my writers is to find motivation and support in the friends and family members in our lives who believe in us. When you’re feeling self-doubt or needing motivation, surround yourself with these people. They can remind you of how talented and resilient you are during times when you’re struggling to find your creative power. Constant reassurance from others doesn’t, however, mean much if we still don’t believe in ourselves. Practice positive affirmations and accept our strengths and all we offer as writers, knowing that
true success is only found when we have the courage to keep going.
To find out more on how to write a positive affirmation, and practice self-compassion through my mentorship program, contact me at Bowerbird Publishing via email, email@example.com or www.crystalleonardi.com/about-1. Or, purchase your own copy of ‘6 Steps to Self-publishing’ through my website www.crystalleonardi.com/my-books.
Special thanks to Prima Donna Business Diva for the inspiration behind this blog and the powerful quote; "Success is not final, failure is not fatal, it's your courage to keep going that counts."