Friday, May 25, 2012

Give Back to Yourself -- Acknowledge Your Strengths

I have concentrated on criticism, whether constructive or destructive, for the past few posts (and a few in the past dealing with conformity), because in writing we need to lead with our strengths. To do so, it takes acknowledging that we have more strengths than weaknesses. After all, it takes a strong spirit and belief in yourself to continue writing despite all obstacles.

Building self esteem may help, but it's more about recognizing what you do day by day to embrace a writing life free of self-doubts.

In pursuit of that ideal, let me give you a checklist of things to work on in acknowledging and building your strengths:

1. Determine your own success. This means not depending on any "experts" to tell you how success should look, feel or be accomplished.
2. Celebrate those successes. Buy a book on gardening, instead of another one on how to write or succeed in writing. Or use the funds for a trip that you have put off until you "made it big."
3. Say you love to write out loud, every day. This is one piece of advice that makes absolute sense. Our self-talk is often self-defeating.
4. Don't defend or define your need to write. This includes having to answer the inevitable question: "What have you published?"
5. Play with words and ideas. If you write for a business or corporation, it takes reshaping how you approach a writing life on your own time. This can be done by playing with the words or overriding the restrictions you face every day, if only in a five-minute free-for-all of irreverence.
6. Acknowledge the changes you seek as positive moves forward for you.

I'm going to post only once or twice a week for a few months because I'm taking four classes toward a degree in computer media and a certificate in programming. Please bear with me.

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