Characteristics of a People Pleaser

Do you have a difficult time sticking to your writing schedule? Do you have a difficult time doing your writing if other activities demand your attention? Can you assert your need to write if your family decides that they want to do something else but stay home?

If you answered any of the above questions in the affirmative, you are probably a people pleaser.

Here are a few characteristics of a people pleaser.

  • Do you do things from duty or obligation, and not because you want to?
  • Do you feel trapped by your obligations?
  • Do you often say yes to things and then privately complain about doing these things?
  • Do you agree to something and then feel trapped because there is no one else to do them?
  • Do you quickly and regularly set aside your true feelings and needs in order to be accommodating to others?
  • Do you feel guilty when your decisions don’t please others?
  • Do you lie about what you want to do or if you’re busy when someone calls and wants something?
  • Are you afraid to set limits?
  • Do you change your decision if someone judges you?
  • Does your habit of people pleasing give you some control or influence in a situation.

JournalTo find out whether you are really a people pleaser, answer the following questions in your writing journal. If you haven’t started a writing journal yet, please take steps to buy yourself a journal and start this process of self-exploration. You will learn so much about yourself in the process.


  • Instead of saying yes and complaining privately, can you just say no, not this time?
  • Can you remind yourself that you have needs too and respect them?
  • If you feel guilty because someone is sad about your decision, can you tell yourself “It’s okay for him/her to be angry or sad?”
  • If someone is angry about a thoughtful, careful decision that you made, can you stand up to the critic and don’t change your mind?
  • Can you be honest with others about your feelings?

Irene S. Roth

Freelance Writer, Author, and Editor








Developing the Mindset of a Problem-Solver

Do you get overwhelmed by problems in your writing life? Do you feel that there are few solutions and many more problems, and you don’t really know what to do to solve your problems? If you do, believe me, you’re not alone.

Many writers are overwhelmed by problems and difficulties. The writing life is plagued with problems and the more we difficulty we have coping with and finding solutions to our problems, the less successful we will be as writers.

Also, when we are overwhelmed by problems, we tend to have a negative mindset. We tend to be overcome by these problems, and we tend to engage in a lot of negative self-talk. This can be a recipe for disaster for a successful, productive, and fulfilling writing life. So, we all have to learn to problem solve, and we can all become better problem-solvers.

First, we have to make sure that negative thoughts don’t enter our minds all the time. For instance, don’t keep telling yourself that this solution won’t work or that nothing will ever change in your writing life. Instead, develop a positive attitude towards your problems and see what happens. If you go into this process with a negative attitude and negative self-thoughts, you will probably not be successful.

Here are a few tips to develop a positive attitude as opposed to a negative one.

  • Practise having a positive attitude as much as possible. This is not easy for many writers to achieve because beginning writers tends to be very uncertain all the time. But some of the habits that you are making now can affect your whole life. So, take the time to really develop a positive and realistic attitude. This will really help you to develop positive self-talk as well over time which will in turn help you to achieve your writing goals.
  • Make friends with that inner voice of yours, and be kind to it. Writers all too readily criticize themselves. That little inner voice inside of them has very little to say that is positive during a writer’s life. And this could cause a lot of problems in the future because being negative is a habit that is instilled in writers and that will follow them throughout their whole writing career, if they are not careful.
  • Practice saying positive affirmations to as often as possible. By practising positive affirmations, writers could get beyond the negativity that they are feeling. A few positive things that you can say are: I know I can do this; I am capable; I am bright; I can have great writing partners. These positive affirmations will help you to achieve your writing goals much more readily.
  • Believe that you can accomplish whatever you want, even if you have to fake it at first. Sometimes, it is best to keep your thoughts positive, even if you don’t know the exact outcomes of your actions. Your thoughts can affect whether or not you achieve your goals. And the more positive your thoughts are, the more capable of achieving your goals you will feel.

So, set your writing goals high and believe that you’ll achieve them. If you believe that you can and you are positive about your writing goals, you will most likely achieve them. By following the four tips above writers could use positive self-talk to achieve their writing goals.

Try it!

Irene S. Roth


My New Workshop at Savvy Authors is Coming Right Up

7 habits of highly committed wirtersHi there all,

My workshop on The Seven Habits of Highly Committed Writers will be held from April 22nd to May 19th, 2014 at Savvy Authors.

To register for this wonderfully informative workshop and receive this E-book for free, please click on the link below to register. here is the URL for The Seven Habits of Highly Committed Writers.

I look forward to informing you more about these all-important habits for writers.

Irene Roth

Writing on the Computer

Hi fellow writers!

Lately, I’ve been doing some reflecting on the difference of writing by hand on a pad with pen in hand and writing  and composing on the keyboard.

I have discovered that there is a marked difference between writing on paper at your desk and writing on the keyboard.  Most notably, the difference is as follows as I have seen after reflecting on this for about a year or so while writing both ways:

When I write on the keyboard, I could write a lot quicker. For instance, I could write a few books a month or 150 pages each. So, when I write by hand it is much slower.

However, what bothers me about writing on the keyboard as opposed to writing by hand is the quality of writing. I am worried that the quicker my writing becomes, the less precise and concise it will be.

Now, there are certain kinds of writing that I still to by hand, such as when I do philosophical writing. However, despite that, I still write my nonfiction books for teens and tweens on the keyboard. I have an outline of all the chapters and an outline of each chapter, but beyond that, I have nothing written down on paper.

There is something perplexing about writing completely on the keyboard. So, I will definitely make sure that I find out why I am so perplexed about it over the next while and whether I could determine whether there are certain books that could and perhaps even should be written on a keyboard.

As some of you know, I also write novels. Now novel-writing is one type of writing that it is BEST, in my opinion, to write first drafts on the keyboard. After you have your overall outline and chapter outlines, and character sketches, and plot points, it is time to sit down and write it quickly.

However, the jury is still out for nonfictional kinds of writing.  So, I will keep exploring and let you know what my findings are in the future.

To your productivity this spring!

Irene S. Roth

Inspiration versus Self-Discipline

It’s not easy to become committed to writing projects by developing self-discipline and to move past the initial inspiration that motivated them to start a project. It requires more than being excited about pursuing a project. It involves making a decision to see a project through to completion, regardless of the obstacles that get in the way.

Commitment and self-discipline are crucial to reaching your writing goals and becoming a self-discipline writer. Commitments become apparent when something is gut-level important. Our commitments can pave a path to success as time goes on. Ideally, commitment involves a decision to start and complete a writing project.

In addition, commitment is a self-disciplined decision or choice to pursue a particular writing project. Writers need more than motivation to be successful with their writing projects. Here are a few steps to commit to writing goals. None of them merely require motivation to write.

1. View writing commitments as important and not just a nice thing to do. Writing commitments should advance our writing careers. If they don’t we shouldn’t commit to them.

2. Carefully reflect before committing to a writing project. Many writers commit to the wrong things. This can be frustrating and result in a lack of success. The writing goals we commit to must be instrumental to our long-term success. Don’t just set goals and then hope for the best. Assess the goals before committing to them.

3. Always try to keep learning and researching as much as we can about the topic to be written about. It takes a lot of research to write a good quality book or article. Researching can also help commit to a project.

4. Plan for success. Success doesn’t just happen. It takes a lot of hard work. Each step taken can lead to success, one small step at a time. We just have to plan our steps and bring them about one day at a time.

Below, I will clarify the distinction between mere motivation and self-discipline. Take a look.
Inspiration                                                       Self-Discipline
Something we think                                 Something we decided will
will help make a big difference              will help make a big difference
Something we like                                     Something that’s beyond like
Something we’re                                        Usually has to do with
momentarily passionate                         a long-term writing goal
Usually short-term                                   Something that lasts long
Tends to fluctuate                                       Tends not to fluctuate
Based on emotions                                     Based on a decision
Based on short-bursts                              Based on long-term
of energy perseverance


As we can see, self-discipline ensures the completion of writing goals from the most important to the least important. Self-discipline stops short-term projects from taking top priority in our writing lives. We must focus on longer projects to be successful writers.

Irene S. Roth

Lack of Energy Rescue

Do you experience low energy levels when you’re working on your writing projects? Do you feel that no matter how inspired you are at the beginning of a writing project, you lose momentum in the long run?

If you answered these questions in the affirmative, believe me, you’re not alone. Our energy levels may dwindle a lot. But we can all kick start our ambition if it gets low. You don’t need to have high-energy all the time to follow through and see your project through to the end. Completing your writing projects need not be like a race that you complete. All you have to do is to keep running to the finish line!

Every action creates a reaction. So, if you do something, something else will happen. Doing more is obviously preferable to doing less or nothing at all. But if you can’t, do whatever is possible. Don’t push yourself. As you do little things, your enthusiasm to continue on will increase. One micro-action leads to another. Even the smallest action generates energy. In other words, energy creates energy and momentum builds to the point where we can gain a lot of energy and be able to continue and see our project to completion.

You may also try a visualization exercise. This is the secret to getting over an energy slump for many writers. Look at where you want to go in the future and then you may be able to get there. More specifically, to visualize, use the following scheme.

• Define what you want;
• See it in your mind’s eye;
• Believe that it is yours; and
• Your creative mind will inspire you to action to get it.

The important thing to remember is that you don’t need a lot of energy all at once to follow through and see your project to completion. However, consistence, persistence, and patience can usually help complete projects more than anything.

Try it!

Irene S. Roth

Dealing With Distraction

It’s easy to become distracted when you start your writing career. Anything can distract you, if you allow it to. It is can take a long time to learn how to focus on your writing in such a way that distractions will be minimized, if not avoided altogether.

Distractions can take many different forms. We could be distracted by our children, spouses, family members or phone and email. Limiting these distractions can be easy, if you take a few steps. Here are a few to consider.

1. Set an egg-timer

I find that setting a timer helps a lot. I set it for, say, one or two hours, and during that time, I don’t do anything but think about what I am doing. The timer gives me the structure I need to keep my eyes and mind on the manuscript that I am working on.

2. Do nothing but write during your allotted time

Nothing, except an emergency, should move you to do anything else than write during my allotted time. If you are serious about writing, make sure that you actually write during your devoted time.

3. Shut off all outside distractions before sitting down to write

It is important for writers to shut off the ringer on the phone and don’t answer the door if the doorbell rings during your allotted writing session. Do nothing but write.

4. Tell Family about your Writing Time

It is important for you to tell your family ahead of time what your writing schedule will be for the week. Then when you’re writing time comes, honour it so that your family can honor it too. Don’t be persuaded to do anything but write during those times.

5. Work on one project at a time

Seasoned writers usually finish up all their writing projects. They work diligently through discouragement and rejection. They also find a way to work consistently on a project until it is complete.

Writers will usually hit a lot of distractions when they set out to write. This is to be expected and is very much a part of writing practise. Amateur writers, on the other hand, tend to quit when the going gets tough. Many amateur writers may end up with having one or two filing cabinets of incomplete manuscripts if they are not careful.

And many of them don’t have any inclination to work on them again. Try taking one of these manuscripts out and work on it until it is completed. Then take out the next one and do the same. This practise, in itself, could be a confidence booster. But more than that, it will definitely help you be much more successful.

By taking these steps, you will be eliminating distractions as much as possible. And you’ll feel less frustrated as a writer.

Irene S. Roth