As I Was Saying…

As I was saying…

If you want to take great photos of fireworks…

Wait. What? At the end of January?

So, it’s been a while. I took a break. A long break. Actually, I went on vacation right after writing that last post and instead of writing as I had planned, I stopped.

I needed to.

My brain was full.

My thoughts were not nice. I was scattered and stressed.

I felt like I was competing but wasn’t sure why. Or against whom. I was overwhelmed with looking at my numbers and interactions. My posts and likes and tweets. My followers and comments and visitors were always on my mind.

I was so worried about writing the wrong thing or making a mistake or not getting enough feedback I discovered I couldn’t write anything. Any idea I had, I would talk myself out of. Each potential topic was stupid, boring, done before or I didn’t have enough expertise or qualifications to write about certain things. Which then became everything.

Then I couldn’t write about anything.

Not that I didn’t constantly think about writing. Not that I didn’t have blogging friends and local friends reaching out and encouraging me to write. While I appreciated the encouragement, I was stuck.

I read once that sometimes procrastination is caused by the fear of not being perfect. Maybe that’s part of what was happening. As I read more bloggers I couldn’t help but compare myself and my writing to theirs.

As much as I was moved by their words, I was also stepping back, listening to that judgmental voice, saved only for me, that kept telling me, “You aren’t good enough to do this.”

I’d love to say I’ve stopped listening, that I don’t hear it anymore.

But I do. I’m trying to quiet it. I’m going to write anyway. What I’m not going to do is be stressed over it. Over the voice, the numbers, the comparisons. If I write and I’m the only one to read it – then that’s how it goes. The most important thing for me is to find the joy in writing again. To find the peace it offers and enjoy the friendships it brings me.

Thank you to each of you who reached out and gave me encouragement and let me know you are still here.

As I was saying...

 

I know I’m not alone and everyone has their own way of dealing with self-doubt and negative self-talk. What do you do when it becomes too much? How do you shut off that miserable voice? I’d love to hear how you handle it.

19 Comments

  1. yay! You’re back. I have missed you and your words. Xoxo

    • I’ve missed you too. I need to call you, and brainstorm. You wouldn’t believe it but some of your words are still, today, rattling around in my brain and, well, I just want to talk to you about them. Thanks Tara!

  2. I’m so glad you are back, Steph! I totally get where you are coming from, and I’m happy that you are shushing that judgmental voice. I hear it too, and I think anyone who says they don’t is lying.

    I vent when I can’t handle it, preferably to another blogger who understands where I am coming from. Just last night I blew off steam with another blogger, and she made me laugh and helped me quiet the voice. Please know that you can message me anytime; I’d be happy to help you tell your voice to simmer down.

    You won’t be the only one who reads your blog posts – I guarantee that!

  3. Glad you’re back!!! You are the FIRST person who inspired me to blog. Those who love you (me – there are many more) wouldn’t judge. Because love is unconditional. Write freely and know you are supported. (Just change my name when ya do

  4. I am so happy you are back and I think you are right as writers we tend to do this and I know I definitely have had my moments of comparing my writing to others. But still I think you are a wonderful writer and hoping you have found your voice again and will be sharing more with us once again now. Welcome back 🙂

  5. The first step is always the hardest; cliche, I know, but so so so so true! I will follow your blog because I already love how you approached THIS blog with honesty and humor. Being a writer is tough. Being a mother is tough. Hell. Being a woman is tough. We have to support one another, and I am going to support you, Stephanie. I’m excited to read your words. And I am excited to find inspiration in other woman in our area–people who love and support you no matter what. Women who lift one another up. So you’ve taken the first step, and now all of us are here are with you for the journey. 🙂 xo

    • Love this Denise. I see your photos and posts all the time. You are pretty inspirational in your own right – but I’ve known that for years. Thank you for your kind words, look forward to moving forward with you and our local “army of friends.” We’re pretty lucky, huh?

  6. I have those same doubts all the time. I just can’t look at numbers! Your posts says beautifully what a lot of us think all the time. I hope you keep writing!

    • Thank you! I had to break free from the numbers but it spoke volumes that I was still constantly thinking of writing. It felt good to “come clean” about how I was feeling.

  7. I think we have all been through that so some extent. I know I have. I was wondering were you went! I met you at BlogU and then did ‘t see any posts for a while. I’m glad you are back and I think you have a great attitude about it!

  8. It would never happen.. that you’d write and no one would read it. Or that you’d write and it wouldn’t resonate with anyone. We have too strong of a community for that and as I read the comments above, I know it to be iron-clad. Really. I’ve lived it.
    I’ve been blogging almost five years now and I’ve never stopped, but yes, the negative self-talk was with me the whole time. Sure. I just tell it to shut up a lot. Or I post photos.
    Or I dissect my brain. Even if it’s not nice and sometimes it’s not nice.

  9. I find it so interesting that I came LOOKING FOR YOU just now- tonight…wondering about you. Isn’t that interesting?

    I said to myself, “I really need to follow that girl more closely. I think she is such a beautiful voice, and I don’t know WHY I don’t read her more often.”

    I did. I totally said that to myself.

    I love your voice, your words, your blog.

    Do it, because you love it. I struggle ALL the time- with jealousy and wondering why I am even trying. That insecurity rears its ugly head often. I get it. I get you.

    Keep writing for all the right reasons, like you said.

    I am very very glad you’re back. <3

  10. Almost everyone goes through those same doubts and fears. I am 64 and still must tell myself that there is so much goodness in my life to be thankful for..that this temporary ugliness is a passing and unimportant phase. Congratulations on your own victory…and many,many more than just the one are reading your words

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