Conquering Your Fear of Writing
By Kathleen Laney
You are not alone. It’s a common fear. There is even a name for it—Scriptophobia.
Often a result of previous unpleasant experiences, the fear of writing can creep deep into your psyche. You worry you will be rejected, ridiculed, criticized or embarrassed. Perhaps you think a reader will dislike your piece, form a bad opinion of you, post a negative comment in response to your online content, or worse yet, write a letter to the editor.
However, writing on a regular basis is essential to your career and professional development. Avoidance will only damage your ability to improve your writing skills and gain confidence. Writing is the primary basis upon which your abilities and work will be judged. Even if your profession is of a technical nature, you still need to be able to write. For most of us, emails are the most common form of business communication, so it’s important to get it right.
There are ways to conquer dealing with such anxiety or ‘Writer’s Block.’ How do we get there? Try these three quick tips to overcome your fear of writing:
- Deal with the fear. The difference between the truly great and the merely good is that the great feel the fear, acknowledge it, and keep going.
- Accept imperfection. Live by the wise words, “The key to success is not perfection. It is making peace with the phrase good enough and moving on. Done is better than perfect.” After all, your perfect is not the same as anyone else’s. You have no idea what others’ likes or dislikes are, and you will never be able to please everyone.
- Own your voice. Don’t get bogged down in the details. Maybe you didn’t write that perfect sentence, but did you write to get your point across? Write the way you speak. The more authentic you are with your writing and stop trying to reach perfection, the more you will be relatable and attract the right people.
Realizing that your writing doesn’t have to be a masterpiece to make a difference will take a huge weight off your shoulders. Simply do your best to get your thoughts, experiences, and ideas out to the world.
Kathleen Laney is president and founder of Laney Solutions.