Time is the primary challenge everyone admits to having, but what happens if the biggest writing challenge you face is you?
If, in the moment of inspiration, you think that you’re not a writer, you discount your ability to improve through practice. If weeks later you start feeling that writing a book is beyond you, you discount your ability to focus on creating the whole out of parts and pieces. If you listen to the thoughts running through your head months later that say you know nothing about publishing a book, you discount your ability to learn.
Every time you discount your ability, you tamp down the flames of inspiration until eventually they will smolder and die out.
But you can take action and build your confidence to write and publish and sell your book. Your message is important, so protect it, grow it, share it.
6 ways to build your confidence
Here are six ways that you can build your confidence in your ability to write and publish your book and fan the flames of your inspiration.
Counter your doubts with a list of successes. Make a list of achievements and goals you’ve accomplished. Add to that list the ideas, dreams, and plans that you put into action, even if you don’t think they were successful. Don’t judge your sparks of inspiration by ultimate completion. The fact that you took your ideas to the next step is what defines success for this list. Remember those times that you ventured into unknown territory and survived? Add them to your list.
Use affirmations and quotes to lift your doubts and to remind you to keep going. Sometimes you just need a shot in the arm to boost your confidence and your willingness to move forward. Some of my favorite quotes are:
Sometimes questions are more important than answers. – Nancy Willard –
Don’t wait until everything is just right. It will never be perfect. There will always be challenges, obstacles and less than perfect conditions. So what. Get started now. With each step you take, you will grow stronger and stronger, more and more skilled, more and more self-confident, and more and more successful. – Mark Victor Hansen –
You’ll learn more about a road by traveling it than by consulting all the maps in the world. – unknown –
Remember, there are no mistakes, only lessons. Love yourself, trust your choices, and everything is possible. – Cherie Carter-Scott –
For success, attitude is equally as important as ability. – Harry F. Banks –
The road to success is always under construction. – Lily Tomlin –
I’m still looking for more books. If you have a book that’s made a difference in your creative life, please share (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Surround yourself with people who support your inner writer. You need individuals who can act as cheerleader, supportive opinion giver, and mentor along the way. There are some great on-line groups such as NaNoWriMo and 20BooksTo50K on Facebook who focus on writing. Or look for individuals in your business and social networks that are positive, uplifting, and energizing. Consider starting a small mastermind group that provides accountability AND encouragement. There will be times when you need someone else to hold the space for your dreams and inspirations.
Prepare a comeback to that inner naysayer who may try to tear your dream down. Your self-talk is real, but it doesn’t mean it’s true. When you hear yourself using the words “always” or “never,” you can count on that inner naysayer being WRONG. So, come up with a response. Be kind, even to your naysayer, but come up with something that can snap you out of it and stop you from going down that path of doubt and negativity. My go-to response is… I’ll consider quitting tomorrow after a good night’s sleep. That’s because, when I’m tired or hungry or have just drained all my energy by giving a presentation, I’m most vulnerable to my inner naysayer.
Create a Confidence Board or an Inspiration Wall in your writing studio (no matter how small or large it is). Add your success list, put your quotes and motto up. Add anything that will build your confidence and inspire you.
But the best way to build your confidence is to keep writing and moving your book or blog one step forward.
So… how will you build your confidence and stop discounting your abilities?
palpable tangible, apparent, conspicuous, detectable, evident, perceptible, distinct
~ Thesaurus of the Senses author, Linda Hart