The cave you fear to enter holds the treasure you seek. ~Joseph Campbell
We fear things because we’ve been conditioned to do so.
All our lives we’ve been told, “They’re different, you shouldn’t talk to them.” or “That food is weird, you shouldn’t try it.”
The problem with this is we find ourselves stuck fearing everything. Whatever happens in our lives we discover that there’s a fear attached to it.
Writing is a major fear for a lot of writers, not because we’re afraid to write, it’s because we’re afraid of our writing not being as good as it could be, or it not being as strong as we’d like it to be.
We sit at our desk writing and the fear of poor prose can stop us from writing. Doubt of our own abilities can kill a writer’s confidence which in turn will kill a writer’s imagination.
Getting through our fear of not living up to our own abilities will make us stagnant or worse yet lead us down the path of forgetting why we started writing in the first place.
You should keep a list of reasons why you started writing:
- Make sure this list is visible when you’re writing.
- Create a desktop wallpaper with the list on your computer.
- This list can be something you share with those close to you, or not. If you tell them why you write, they may be more inclined to support your efforts.
Fear management is the best thing you can do for your creativity. Keeping your fears in check will keep you writing and will make your supporters more willing to help you.
Like the quote at the start of this post, fear of doing things in your writing will lead you away from your goals, even if you write for yourself and don’t plan on publishing, fear will create the negativity that keeps you from finishing a story, book or poem.
Don’t fear entering the cave, run through it screaming, searching for the treasure you earned from writing.
Are you afraid of entering the cave? Answer in the comments.