Writer habits- day 2: Believe

So I outed myself as a writer. Now what? Now comes the hardest part (for me): believing that I am what I claim to be. Now I gotta figure out how to believe I am a writer. Despite the critic in my head, the doubt in my heart, and the numerous times I hit backspace to restart this sentence, there is the deep part of me that can’t deny that part of the reason I was made to be a writer. I need to believe this about my self.

Until this happens, until you actually believe you are a writer, you’re only kidding yourself. And you’re not doing anybody any good with all this self-doubt.

Jeff Goins

So how do I practice this believing? How do I practice fighting self doubt? How do I get it into my heart that down to my bones I am a writer? I think this is the point I have a tendency to focus my efforts fighting self doubt instead of leaning into believing. The difference can make all the difference in the world. When I’m spending my energy trying to silence the critic, I don’t have any thing to offer once I get that doubter to shut up. My energy is going against something instead of going into something.

So, I’m going to try something different. I am going to stop being scared of myself, of what I don’t yet know about myself. I am going to fight to believe this writing thing is something that is part of my DNA. I’m going to write words even when my inner doubter shouts, “you have nothing to say.” I am going to discipline my self to believe my own identity. My public practice of believing I am a writer is this: I will make time each day to do nothing but write. Jeff recommends getting up two hours earlier and writing. That sounds great, but I am not a morning person…  at all! So maybe (especially with me working a swing shift) getting up before my family isn’t my solution… but I can still make time to write, time to convince my self that I am a writer by leaning into that belief and actually writing. For the past three days I have proven that I can make time to write. I can do this practice. Yes, it involves getting up and showering right away, getting a cup of coffee, and turning off the social media notifications for a while. Yes, it is hard to get into the swing of writing when there is a two year old being two (loudly). Yes the things that need to get done in the day are still there. However, none of that takes away from the fact that I am a writer and I am going to lean in, convincing and Jedi mind trick my self into believing it by showing myself that I can write.

  • Lisa R

    Love the Jedi references. And the best thing about the two year old is that he will grow up seeing Daddy write. It’s only been in the last three years that my 15 year and 12 year old sons have seen mom write. Good thing is that they know what mom takes time to do for herself—even if they do roll their eyes. 🙂

  • Writing is indeed part of your DNA.

    Whether you choose to write at 2PM or 2AM really doesn’t matter, does it?  Nope.  It’s the commitment and habit-formation that counts.

    May the Force be with you, Aaron.  Or, better yet:  may the Force be WITHIN you, Aaron.   Which, by the way, it is.

    You just need to find the best way to get the thoughts from your head onto the page (or computer screen).

    Enjoy the process.

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