How to write without limits

Are you aware of your writing beliefs?

One of the things we learn from coaching and NLP is the power of our beliefs.  They are not facts, but we tend to treat them as if they were.  They become the rules we live by.  They also act as self-fulfilling prophecies.  Joseph O’Connor in the NLP Workbook writes that “they act as permissions as well as blocks to what we can do”.  A negative belief will limit what we think is possible, achievable, realistic.  This applies as much to writing as any other area of our lives.

Of course we are not always consciously aware of the negative or limiting beliefs that are holding us back.  We may need to learn how to ‘listen in’ to our internal dialogue, to tune into what we are telling ourselves. One way to do this is to think about your writing goals then ask yourself: what’s stopping you?  what’s holding you back?

Mike Sansone at ConverStations has just done this as part of a ‘breakthrough’ exercise, identifying the negative beliefs that might hold up a blog writer.  This is what made it onto his list:

* Not enough time; I’ve got other things to do
* Nobody is reading my blog yet anyway, I’ll do it later
* I’m not a good writer; I don’t know what to say

Everyone carries around some of these negative beliefs.  And everyone’s list of limitations will be a little bit different.  Unique to you.  And I don’t know if you are surprised at some of the negative beliefs that you’ve
jotted down.  Or if they are old, all too familiar refrains.  Whatever they are, wherever they’ve come from, however immutable they may seem: don’t despair.  This is the first step in reducing the power
they have over you.   You can’t change them until you know what they

And now you’ve named them… now they’re written down… I don’t know which beliefs you want to change now?

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2 Responses to “How to write without limits”

  1. On May 15, 2008 at 4:09 pm SpaceAgeSage responded with... #

    I had a great journalism mentor who saw writing for the public as an honor and a commitment, so I have always approached writing as an audience-based activity. Unfortunately, approaching it that way has made some of my writing more of a duty-bound obligation than a matter of creatively and joyously resonating with my audience.

    Thanks for helping me see writing in a new light.

  2. On May 15, 2008 at 9:01 pm Joanna Young
    Twitter: joannapaterson
    responded with... #

    Thank you for the feedback - and for reminding me of this post that was written many moons ago!



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