Overcome Fear and Start Writing

The article in the NY Times Sunday magazine section was about “Rewriting a bad memory to get yourself back on the slopes.” They say that revising a fearful memory is a mental process – an actual neurological thing – and that you can overlay a positive image over the bad memory and change the outcome of how you feel about the memory. You can’t change the content of your memory, but you can change the accompanying emotion.

This is what I’ve been talking about, only kind of in reverse. I say…visualize, imagine, foresee the positive. As in, “I will sell this manuscript!” Or even before that, “I will finish this manuscript!”

The article concludes, “The best thing about fear is that it makes you act smarter.” So (manipulating this to fit my theory), will fear of feeling like ca-ca because you told yourself you’d write today, but instead ended up answering emails with “LOL!” or something else equally unproductive help you to sit and write?  Can you use a fear of feeling badly to reach your goal?

You know what I’m gonna say, right? Of course, yes and absolutely! Whatever it takes to think positive and get your work done is good. And the really upside to that is that at the end of the day, you’ll have the satisfaction of having written something. Rinse and repeat the next day and voila! You’ve got two days worth of writing done.

Pretty soon you’re in the habit of sitting down to write every day, and you’ll actually start to have a physical feeling of withdrawal when you don’t and you know what? That fear thing will have worked – or, put more positively, you will  have visualized and realized your finished manuscript!

Leave a Comment

Enter your info below if you want to…

  • be a better writer
  • learn from live critique workshops
  • have access to interviews with experts
  • learn the how-tos of writing
  • be in a community of like-minded writers.