Is Perfectionism Stealing Your Inner Peace as a Writer?

   Writers tend to be perfectionists. I know I am. But today I want to reflect on whether it is
   robbing you of creativity and stealing your peace as a writer much as it does for me some of
   the time.
   There are days when I feel very anxious at my desk. I love writing first drafts. But once
   the first drafts are written, and the revision process starts on my various manuscripts, I tend
   to freeze. My jaws clench, my stomach is in knots, and I may even feel queasy sometime.
   This was the way I felt today as I approached my work. Then I sat down, took a few
   deep breaths and tried to determine why I was feeling this way. It was certainly robbing me
   of at least one hour of creativity and writing and I didn’t want this feeling to wreck my
   whole writing day.
   As I closed my eyes and sat further back in my chair, I realized that I was so afraid of
   making mistakes. I wanted everything to be perfect right away. I didn’t want to be revising
   the manuscript that I was working on for the fifth time. I wanted to be sending it off to an
   editor somewhere and getting it published. And that was robbing me of the peace of mind
   that I needed to write. No wonder I felt so anxious.
   So, I vouched to stop all of these overwhelming thoughts for just ten minutes. I set an
   egg timer and sat back, closed my eyes, and stopped all the inner scripts that were going on
   in my head. It took a good two or three minutes for me to finally be rid of all of these scripts.
   Then I just sat and internalized the peace of the birds outside my window and the chimes in
   the background in my living room signalling another new hour. I took a few deep breaths
   and then I came back to my desk.
   I can’t tell you how good it felt. I felt renewed. And I was able to start working without
   feeling overwhelmed and anxious.  All of these inner scripts were gone and all I had was
   peace within my heart and soul, and my manuscript in front of me.  I felt lighter and much
   more able to revise my manuscripts. And I had a GREAT work time revising that particular
   So, don’t let negative thoughts overwhelm you as a writer and wreck your peach of
   mind. Don’t try to be perfect. Just try TO BE in the moment and TAME all of that INNER
   DIALOGUE that steals your peace of mind and your creativity. You will be glad that you
   If you wake up the way I did today, I encourage you to try this exercise and let me know
   how you do.
   May you have a peaceful day of writing!
   ~ Irene


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