My Writers Anxiety

Can I admit something? A lot of the time writing makes me anxious. I want to translate my thoughts to paper as eloquently and succinctly as they sound in my head, but writing something of great quality takes me a lot of time. And when I sit down with the goal to produce something magical, those expectations paralyze me.

I just spent two hours creating a rough semi-edited blog post. It’s got potential to be great, but it’s taken me a while, (and is far from complete). Not only was it time-consuming, but it was difficult. Maybe it was hard because of my insecurities and the mental limits they place on my mind (obsessive thinking – like trying to be funny: you just have to let it happen, and work the room). I know rationally that it takes a lot of effort, and a lot of time for anyone to achieve something great – Rome wasn’t built in a day, and all that – but that doesn’t stop my anxiety from clouding my mind.

During all of this crazy anxious doubting I thought: why can’t I just focus on the goal – to produce something of great quality, and to grow as a writer. I’ll put the anxiety and expectations away, and just focus on the craft. It was then that I realized maybe I’m not writing to achieve anything other than a vain affirmation that I’m clever and smart. Maybe I’m writing to reassure myself that my insecurities aren’t true, rather than for any actual healthy goal.

This is big. I always knew in the back of the mind what I was doing, but I was too oblivious to notice the glaring truth. I’m a neurotic writer. These anxiety attacks and fears and doubts don’t stem from the writing, but from my ego and the insecurities I project on the page. So the solution is obvious: to write with the intention of achieving a goal, rather than to prove my value and worth to the world.

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