Friday, January 27, 2012

Self-Imposed Failure Sytsem No Good For Writers


Self-imposed ______ (please, feel free to fill in the blank as you see fit).

Over my years, I have filled in the blank with so much, a stream of self-imposed obstacles/ limits/ excuses/ doubts/ failures- self-imposed bullshit, really; so much negative flotsam. How about you Folks? Have you created your own impediments, your own stumbling blocks that prevent achievement of that thing you want most in life? Or are you one of the lucky few who can look at that blank space and say, honestly say, ‘nope, not me- doesn’t apply’?

Have you kept the negative out, allowed only the positive?

In the past month I have had far too many self-imposed limits. I’ve allowed myself to engage in pity, doubt, a false belief that what I’m doing has no meaning. Each day, I fill in the blank and each day, I feel worse.

I tell myself that I’m busy with other things, making plans, organizing, planning, preparing. Lies, Folks. I haven’t posted on my blog because I allowed myself the freedom to doubt what I do as having value. I see a frustratingly low number of members to the blog, low visitor counts, a lack of engagement with the content and believe those external numbers are the sum of importance.

I dismiss the fact that writing comes from an internal place, I dismiss the value writing has for me as an individual and for that reason, allowing myself to fill in that blank each day is ultimately self-imposed destruction.

Do what you love. Don’t fill that particular blank space with a negative, Folks.

So, I can plan and organize, and I can do all the things that have occupied me the past month, but at the same time, I have to quit feeling so goddamn morose, buck up, and get back to posting.

This is my virtual slap to the face, my self-imposed directive.

I am pleased to finally participate in the year 2012. Day one...

10 comments:

Callie Kingston said...

This is so true. We can create our most insurmountable barriers if we aren't careful.

Callie

Beta76 said...

Far to often I find myself doing the same thing. At times I get too caught up with the external trappings of putting my work out there. I think "well nobody's reading this anyways" and let all of my self-doubt take over. I'm finding I have to block everything out and "Just Write". You're definitely not alone out there. Keep it up. There are a few of us out here dealing with similar issues!

MT Nickerson said...

You're right, Callie. Doubt tends to perpetuate doubt and before you know what's happening, you can bury yourself to the point it paralyzes action.

MT Nickerson said...

Beta76- Exactly. Take care of the writing and try not to worry about the external trappings. Good luck to you in remembering that writing comes first.

Rory Green said...

Hi Michael - I just found your blog and enjoyed reading this post. Not sure if you're familiar with the Gestalt Cycle of Experience and how it gets interrupted? You can read about it on my site - stop by and say hi! We are all struggling with the same things in different disguises! http://www.writetobeyou.com/2012/01/round-and-round-we-go.html

MT Nickerson said...

Thanks, Rory, for the link and kind words. I'll definitely stop by your site. Always glad to learn new things!

Julia Rachel Barrett said...

Well, happy day one to you. Never too late to participate and doubt is an unpleasant, but ever present fact of life. Comes with the profession.

MT Nickerson said...

Still trying to organize a plan forward, so I guess my day one, Julia, has been longer than I planned. Thanks as always for the support.

Laura W. said...

I get discouraged with my own blog sometimes too, just like you described. Self-doubt plays a part of that.

But mostly, I find my biggest roadblocks are set by other people, not myself. People who think they "know what's best" for me or "are just trying to help." Whether self-imposed or not, it comes down to the same thing: Good intentions. Bad results.

MT Nickerson said...

Laura- don't listen to "people"! Always remember the most important thing about writing a blog- it's your blog.