Turn that Frown Upside Down!

I’m always on the lookout for new tricks to pick me up when I’m feeling down, with life in general and writing in particular. There’s nothing like insecurity to make me unproductive as a writer, so when doubt creeps in, I do my best to quash it. Fast.

Recently, I’ve discovered two techniques I’d like to share with you.

1. Watch any episode of The Biggest Loser.
Practically every other line uttered on this show can be applied to you and your writing.
• Lines of motivation (“You can do anything you set your mind to do,” “Finish what you start, and finish strong”)
• self-belief (“I am not nothing,” “I am a champion”)
• tough love (“No one else is going to do it for you,” “Are you just going to give up?”)
Pretend the trainers and contestants are speaking directly to you. It’s like receiving a two-hour pep talk (eighty minutes if you fast-forward through commercials), not to mention a shot of inspiration from the contestants’ accomplishments and emotional journeys. I guarantee you will feel stronger, more motivated, and more focused after this exercise.

2. Celebrate your daily efforts.
Don’t wait until your next milestone to celebrate. Yes, I am suggesting that you break open that champagne, treat yourself to a nice dinner, splurge on a new pair of shoes… for no reason at all. Or rather, for the very important reason that you are doing your very best and trying your very hardest. Trust me, you need this celebration more now than you will when you achieve that goal. Then, you’ll be so happy about your accomplishment that anything else will just be icing on the cake. While this exercise should not be overindulged, I think it is important to recognize that your efforts are worthy of celebration even without the external measure of success.

What do you do when insecurity sets in? How do you stay motivated and/or get back on track? Please share any techniques you have for defeating doubt. Against such a formidable foe, I like stocking my arsenal with as many weapons as possible! Happy writing!