It's fair to say that at some point in your writing career you're going to experience doubt. There's something insidious in our brains that pops up just at the wrong time. Steven Pressfield calls it Resistance, others call it doubt, imposter syndrome, block. Whatever you refer to it as, I think we can all agree it exists. ALLi author member Alice Briggs is here to show you how to defeat the beast and set yourself up for success in 2020.
Set Yourself up for Success in 2020 and Overcome Mindset Blocks
In 2019, I published 10 books. I illustrated 3 children’s books based on stories my father told my sister and I when we were children, and I wrote 7 related to one of my businesses that helps people work through their emotional and spiritual blocks for healing. I’m releasing them monthly, so the last 2 are on preorder, but they are uploaded and ready!
My goal at the beginning of the year was to publish the 3 children’s books and 5 in the new series. I nearly didn’t make it as perfectionism, insecurity, fear, and grief got in my way. Fortunately, I knew what to do about that head trash so I could continue to move forward. And I met and exceeded my goals for the year!
Head trash is the negative thoughts and beliefs about ourselves, others, and the world that we all have. No one has the exact same garbage they have to work through, but I’ve yet to hear about, much less meet, anyone who doesn’t have some. It comes through hurtful words and experiences in our past that shape our view of the world and our place in it. The following are three of the most common blocks.
Perfectionism shows up as incessant self-editing, agonizing over plot points, the perfect cover design, and that’s if it hasn’t stopped you from beginning to write at all. Perfectionism tells you that if you do something wrong, poorly, or imperfect, that you ARE wrong, incompetent, and hopelessly flawed. Trying something new can be terrifying in that case, because what if you don’t do it perfectly? The truth is, no one does anything perfectly the first time — and that’s okay. It just means it’s new to us. It doesn’t or shouldn’t define who we are.
Insecurity is also a significant deterrent to moving forward. Not only are we worried about our abilities to write the book, or market, or whatever it is; but we also feel we are wandering into unsafe territory. Where we’re going is unfamiliar and we don’t know how it will go. This is normal. When we go out into unknown territory, we don’t know what will happen for sure. But that doesn’t have to stop us. We can take steps to mitigate any potential losses and push past the insecurity.
Fear of rejection is another area I hear often in discussions among authors. When we create something, it holds a piece of ourselves and any criticism of it often feels very personal. I don’t know of anyone who doesn’t struggle with this in some degree, but it becomes a block when it prevents you from writing or publishing at all. What a loss it is to those who will love your work, if you never finish it and put it out there for them to find.
There are many more blocks than I have time for today. Sometimes, however, the blocks show up as resistance that derails our attempts to move forward and we find 1001 other things to do than sit and write, or edit, or market, or… Life happens, but if you have a consistent pattern of avoiding the thing you want to do, it’s time to look at your head trash and find those blocks.
Discover Your Blocks
Sometimes, we know exactly where that resistance is coming from. If not, it’s more work, but not impossible. Dreams are often helpful. Pay attention to where you are, what you’re doing, and how you feel in your dreams. I find it helpful to write my dreams out each morning so I can spot trends. If you don’t dream much or at all, and even if you do, pay attention to things that happen throughout your day that feel similar, or are similar situations. Note your behavior. Is there something you consistently do instead of write?
Look for patterns. Do you feel blocked or trapped? Reassess your goal or strategy and see if you can add in some flexibility. Are you late or out of time? Maybe the timing for the project isn’t right and you need to readjust. Do you avoid what you want to do? Pay attention to what you feel when you try to write. Free write about what you think and feel and see if the block will become obvious to you.
How to Break Through the Blocks and Set Yourself up for Success
Once you know your blocks, here are few strategies you may find helpful. Your goal is to find something that works for you for this issue. I’m a fan of having lots of tools as you may find one works better now and something else does another time.
- Positive affirmation statements. Take the negative statement you hear about yourself or your writing and flip it to something positive. Write it and read it aloud as often as needed. Put it on your mirror or above your desk. This helps to rewire your brain towards the positive thought and change your belief.
- Release the negative emotions. Mind-body energy work is helpful. You can write the emotions out and then destroy them. Picture yourself gathering up all of that insecurity or whatever it is into a box and sending it away. Once released, take the opposite or a positive emotion, and picture yourself replacing the negative with the positive.
- Tapping for negative belief reset and transformation to a positive belief. See the diagram below. Place your right three fingertips on Pt 1, left three fingertips on Pt 2. Keep contact with both points as you tap. Tap in order, 60 seconds each while thinking about the negative emotion or belief. Then massage R-H7 then L-H7 clockwise for 60 seconds each while thinking pleasant or positive thoughts about what you released with Points 1&2.
I’m offering the Find Your Roar in 2020 class to help you set good goals, get rid of the head trash, have accountability and support throughout the year. The class closes Jan 13, 2020 you can find out more here. More books on this subject can be found where ever books are sold, or purchase direct from the author at:Be Successful in 2020 and Learn How to Remove Mindset Blocks @alicearleneb #indieauthor #selfpublishing #IARTG #ASMRG #writingcommunity Click To Tweet
OVER TO YOU
What blocks have you encountered and how have you gotten over them?
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