5 Tips to Curb Self-Doubt

Hiya Freshman Writers! I’m back on the scene after a long time away and ready to help you Freshman Writers with your writing goals. I got the idea for this post on self-doubt after writing about my own writing challenges this summer. You can read that here and let me know what you think. Can you relate?

Since I know many writers (anyone really) struggle with self-doubt, I’ve come up with some tips to help you Freshman Writers look self-doubt in the face and kick its butt! Here you go:

1. Acknowledge that you have doubts. Everyone has them from time to time. Rather than admit that I was doubting my writing talent, I avoided it instead. Til it came to bite me in the rear end. Admit that you have them because then you can deal with them.

2. Let a friend know about your doubts. It’s always good to have a cheerleader, someone on your side who wants your dream to come true as much as you do. Freshman Writers, you cannot go it alone. A cheerleader has faith in you, can pick you up and help you see what they see – a talented writer.

3. Connect with your mentors. If you don’t have a writing mentor, get one. It can be someone you chat with online or someone you can meet with regularly to talk about writing, goals and life in general.  Also subscribe to free newsletters from your favorite writers. It may not be the same as having a personal relationship with your mentor, but that nudge in your inbox can motivate you to get writing.

4. Get back to basics. In a previous post, I wrote about how to return to the beginning of your writing journey. By remembering how you did things during a successful time, you can see what works to get rid of your doubts.

5. Be good to yourself. My biggest challenge in the last few months was taking care of myself. I didn’t sleep well, didn’t have much of an appetite and couldn’t really take a break. Check out this post where I share tips on avoiding burn-out. Remember that your writing is affected by anything and everything affecting you. Taking care of yourself allows you to take care of your writing.

6. Finally, recognize that you’ll screw up. You are going to have doubts. Period. There’s no way to get around that reality, but there are ways to curb it. Just do what works best to get you believing in yourself and writing again.

I hope these tips are as helpful to you as they have been to me so far. I’ve been slowly working to get each one up and running as well as my writing. Treat yourself well and remember that you have the talent within. You just need to work to get it out.

Happy Writing!

Back from Hiatus – Sort of

Hello Freshman Writers! I’m back from a much needed break. Since my last post, I’ve been resting, destressing and spending quality time with kiddo. In addition, I’ve been looking for a new job, which is my biggest challenge. A crazy schedule keeps me from spending quality time with kiddo during the week. So, I’m looking for something better.

I’ve been journaling often and focusing on finding my joy again. If you want to read about it, check out my recent post here. Can you relate?

I will be writing on the site though right now I’m not sure of the schedule. I want to ease back into it while maintaining my joy and peace. So, keep checking back here Freshman Writers for more editorials, quotes and other thoughts for beginning writers. Take care!

A Hiatus

Hiya Freshman Writers! Hope this finds you well and writing.

I’m writing briefly to say that I’m taking the rest of June off and hope to start-up again in July. Work and home issues need my full attention for a while. That and I need to get plenty of rest since I’ve been highly overworked and stressed.

Make sure to read past posts here and to take care of yourselves, Freshman Writers.

Happy Writing!

Fav Friday

Hiya Freshman Writers! Hope this finds you well and writing. Today’s Fav Friday item is a retreat. A few weeks ago after speaking with my spiritual director about the stressful dayjob, he recommended that I go on a women’s retreat locally.

I haven’t been on a retreat since my son was three and that was six years ago! So, this weekend I’m heading to a retreat center right after work tomorrow. Kiddo will be with his father while I enjoy a whole weekend to myself trying to find my peace and spirit again.

I have a lot on my mind and I haven’t been able to write except for my posts here. So I thank you Freshman Writers for coming back to check in. It motivates me to keep writing for you. 🙂

That being said, I will be sharing my experience with you and let you know how it went. I hope that if you need a break from everything that you consider going on a retreat just so you can recharge and reset yourselves.

Happy Weekend Freshman Writers!

Notable Quotable

Hiya Freshman Writers! Hope this finds you well and writing. Today’s quote is about peace. After yesterday’s editorial about taking rest, I decided to follow it up with a quote on peace.

So much time is spent running around like a chicken without a head; trying to get things done, articles finished, etc. While that running around is going on, there is not much time to rest and find peace.

With that in mind I chose a quote by Emerson because only you have control over the things that you do. Whether it is writing for hours on end or writing after a  day job or even getting up early to write. Peace is something that we create for ourselves. No one else can give it to you.

“Nothing can bring you peace but yourself.” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

I know that in order for my writing to happen, I have to find peace in my own life. A crazy job, full-time motherhood, and a part-time job make for a non-peaceful existence. So, I’m going off on a weekend retreat and I’m hoping to come back refreshed and filled with peace.

So, Freshman Writers – what brings you peace?

Catching up

Hiya Freshman Writers! Hope this finds you well and writing. First, I’d like to apologize for not posting the Fav Friday item last week. Overwhelmed with the day job and home issues, I’m back on track today. So I’d like to give you a two for one deal this morning.

What would have been my Fav Friday item is my subscription to The Writer Magazine. I love this magazine for its straightforward advice about the work of writing. Not only does it provide info on various genres and forms of writing, but it is also offers exercises to boost creativity and get you writing. I’ve had my subscription for a year, but purchased individual magazines here and there up until I found I was getting it more often.

Now, the editorial. Ever find yourself so overwhelmed that you have to take a break in order to catch up? That was me in the last week. I found myself having to deal with one task at a time until completion. This was hard for me because I’m used to multi-tasking regularly.

But, I just could not seem to catch up with myself. I felt like I was rushing through everything and still not getting anything done. So, I took a break from writing and even reading about writing. I’ve been focusing so much on learning the craft and using writer-speak all the time, that I forgot everything else.

In order for writing to have life and be found credible by the reader, you need to feed it. How do you feed your writing? Live your life. As simple as that sounds, it isn’t. You’d think that I’d be able to do that since I have so much on my plate. Only trouble was my plate was too heavy and I couldn’t focus on anything except the weight and pressure coming from it.

The good thing is that I recognize that. Another good thing, the plate has gotten a bit lighter. I’ve made decisions, completed tasks and have decided to take time to relax away from the day job. By taking small steps, Freshman Writers, I’ve found that I’ve got a much more positive outlook. I feel like I can accomplish goals.

So Freshman Writers, what do you do to catch up when you’ve fallen behind? What advice/tips would you like to share with other writers? What works for you?

Happy Writing!

Taking on too much

Hiya Freshman Writers! Hope this finds you well and writing. Today’s post is about taking on too much. Even if you are at the beginning of your writing journey, you can take on too much and be easily overwhelmed.

I spent Easter Sunday in City Island with my father, his girlfriend and my son. I was so excited about going because it had been years since I had been there. I spent many weekend afternoons there with my parents as a child and the magic of it hasn’t changed. And this time I was able to share it with my son.

Well, my eyes feasted themselves on a dozen fried shrimp, half a dozen raw clams and fries. Chasing all of that with a pina colada, I knew that I should’ve stopped halfway. I was shocked that I could walk back to the car as stuffed as I was. After running around at a local park, I was still stuffed, but not so much that I couldn’t add a strawberry ice cream sundae. See where I’m going with this Freshman Writers?

Instead of slowing down and really gauging how much I could take on (in this case – food), I kept going and going. Last night, I felt the effects of my chowdown and was sick to my stomach. It was a late lunch so I skipped dinner. Obviously, I skipped dinner.

The lesson here Freshman Writers is to see what is ahead of you, look at what you have on your plate right now and analyze what you can and cannot do. This same concept works for many situations, but especially for writers.

I recently had to let go of a possible writing job because I saw that I could not do the work. After all, with a full time job, part time job, my son and other responsibilities I have, there was no way that I could do the tasks outlined. So I let it go. It was hard because it was a decent paying job with opportunities for growth, but it wasn’t for me.

Freshman Writers, learn to see what you are capable of doing and how much time you have to devote to it. Writing can be a career; you just have to plan it out. And when you can’t, your best bet is to slow down, regroup and start over.

Happy Writing!

Notable Quotable

Hiya Freshman Writers! Hope this finds you well and writing. Today’s quote is about self-care.

What is self-care? It is a term I learned as a grad student studying counseling. Self-care means just that – taking care of yourself. When you are tired, hungry, sick you cannot do your best work. Freshman Writers, if you don’t practice self-care your writing will suffer and no one wants that.

Make sure that you get enough sleep, eat well, exercise and take care of stress. No life isn’t perfect and there will always be something to worry about, but you can better deal with difficulties by practicing self-care.

Take Rest; a field that has rested gives a bountiful crop ~ Ovid

Happy Writing!

Safety & Security

Hiya Freshman Writers! Hope this finds you well and writing. Today’s editorial is about safety and security.

My Twitter account was hijacked yesterday afternoon. I found out when my online pals informed me that they received several naughty direct messages. I was shocked by it, but made the necessary changes to my account.

Since then, I’ve been wary of even sending out tweets. All of my pals were understanding of this, but I apologized anyway. What did I learn from the experience? That I need to make sure to change my password on a regular basis. I’ve been on Twitter for a year and a half. Even still, I had the same password.

While I’m discussing passwords here, Freshman Writers, be sure to update your spyware and security options to keep nasty hackers (like the one who hijacked my account) out of your hair.

Make sure to keep your passwords in a secure place and don’t share them with anyone. Common sense I know, but things happen. Also, be sure to have a spyware program that will check all any items downloaded on your computer. This way, you’ll keep your computer (and your writing) safe from viruses as well.

One last tip, don’t download anything from unknown emails or sites. If you don’t recognize the email address or your computer detects something strange on a website, avoid downloading. You’ll be thankful that you did.

Happy Writing!

Gaming for a good cause

Hiya Freshman Writers! Hope this finds you well and writing. In the hustle and bustle of being a writer and doing everything else that I do, I realized lately that I haven’t been allowing myself much fun. I then remembered a website that my friend introduced me to a couple of years ago.

It’s called “Free Rice” and was developed by a concerned father who wanted to help his child improve vocabulary for the SAT’s while also collecting funds to provide rice to needy families through the UN World Food Program. It’s a great game for Freshman Writers to play when they need a break from writing. It’s also a great reminder of the fun that writing can be.

Check it out today. Help grow your vocabulary as well as feeding the hungry.

Happy gaming!