As I was thinking about a topic for this week, I came across this http://www.writersdigest.com/editor-blogs/guide-to-literary-agents/how-to-conquer-self-doubt-and-just-write from Chuck Sambuchino. It reminded me how I felt when I started to create my presentation for the upcoming SCQAA meeting http://www.scqaa-oc.com/events/34/oct-2012/ .
Now that I have completed my slides for the presentation, I realize that my biggest obstacle was the gremlin called “Self Doubt” who was sitting on my shoulder. That ugly critter was not just lurking under my desk, he was creeping in to peer at everything I needed to do this week. I tried to snatch him off my shoulder and choke the life out of him, but as Chuck found out, “that sneaky little devil won’t die.” Just when I think I have put him to his rest, he again makes a sudden appearance.
What I found that helps keep him at bay, is to surround myself with positive supporters. Hopefully you too have some of these people in your life. You will know them by the feelings they leave behind. For instance, the other day I got a call from a colleague who started out challenging me for an email I sent that meant a bit more work for her, but when she found that I was having a stressful week she quickly switched to concern for me. At the end of the call we were laughing and sharing personal life incidents and I was able to view my situation through more positive eyes. As the call ended, I realized how fortunate I am to be surrounded by positive supporters. I came to work on Monday re-energized and was able to finish the presentation with confidence.
While Chucks experience focuses on his challenges with Self Doubt and how that impacts his career as a writer, I think that everything he says is very applicable to all of us and our desire to grow in our careers. He suggests five tips for overcoming and preventing self-doubt that I have listed below. I am sure you can see as I did that these all apply to any situation, not just writing. So keep that critter in his grave!
“Over coming and preventing self-doubt”
- Be aware of Peer Pressure…find positive people who validate your dreams…
- Ward off the message that you don’t know what you’re doing by continually growing…
- Mentor someone else.
- Be leery of ruts…. Nothing can get you out of a rut quicker than feeling challenged.
- Accept that sometimes you are going to fail…”