I doubt myself a lot. We all do, I suppose. Unless you’re of the rare breed of people who have a ton of unearned confidence.
I mostly doubt my writing. Especially when it matters; anytime I have to prove I can write.
I’m afraid I won’t have any good ideas. Or my writing will sound contrived. Too idiosyncratic. Or I’m not capturing the voice the client is looking for.
There are dozens of reasons in which my writing could be found wanting. I choke. I end up feeling paralyzed, wondering how I ever managed to put a single word down. How I will ever manage again.
My head empties of all words and ideas.
It is quite awful. Though I wouldn’t necessarily call it writer’s block. I still want to write, and I still know how to. It’s just that this doubt becomes overpowering just for a minute or two.
Then I pull myself together. I remember what is at stake and I get to work. If a client isn’t satisfied, they will either give me pointers to allow me to adapt my work accordingly, or we part ways.
At the end of the day, I can only improve. All writing I do is a learning experience. This is also true for every article I publish here. Sometimes I feel as if I am just rambling incoherently. I certainly hope that’s not the case and I do proof-read my articles before I publish them. At least, to catch any typos and make sure that there is some sort of structure or thought one can follow.
When it comes to freelance writing, I often get guidelines to follow, which I simply must stick to and do my best.
Right now, I must find new writing gigs as my current client is still not providing new assignments. I have to make ends meet next month and beyond. So, I will have to bite the bullet and submit writing examples to be judged accordingly.
I know I can work something out. I may doubt myself in some ways (as we all do), but I have never doubted my capacity to keep going. In German, we have the word ‘Urvertrauen’, which is basically a deep-seated faith that there is a way. I have always had a lot of that.
I know I can trust in my abilities. Any writer is critical of their writing. Any poet, painter, artist of any kind is their own worst critic. I know there is plenty of room to learn and improve as well. But I’ve been doing this for eight years, sometimes even full-time.
I can do this. I will do this. I must.
How’s this for a pep talk, ey?