A long, long time ago, I promised a post on self-doubt, and how to overcome it. I asked you lovely readers to open up about your fears and worries in the creative world.
And you did. I learned so much from all you, everyone from writes who have never let another person read their story, to published authors working on multi-book deals. Everyone faced very similar fears. Don’t believe me? Check out the word cloud below. Those words showed up in the majority of fears, regardless of “success level.”
No matter the specifics of the fears, (will anyone like it? will anyone buy it? will I ever make money from it? will I ever find friends?) all the fears came, like many do, from a place of…well, insecurity.
I say that, not out of spite at all. I’m one of you. I’m a ball of insecurity and fears, never sure if I’m enough, if my words are good enough, my jokes are funny enough, my friends like me enough. Every fear you’ve felt, so have I, and so has the rest of the community. Maybe that’s why we’re driven to be creative. We’re looking for “enough.” We’re trying to create something we’re lacking. Maybe that’s why we play gossip games on Twitter, or start cliques. Not because we’re mean, but we’re scared and alone, lashing out like a cornered cat. We’re so sure we will never be enough that we turn our fear on our own creative works, bashing them and calling them stupid.
Here’s the thing. You are enough.
Say it with me.
You are enough.
In your worse moments, when it seems like everyone’s doing better than you, or that you’ll never catch up, that you’ll never have a good day again, or learn the skill to take the work to the next level, say that little phrase. You are enough.
Our business can be a cruel one. It’s full of critiques and rejections. Some can be helpful. Some can be hurtful. We’re surrounded by our creative idols, whose books fill our shelves, and successes our dreams, and some days it seems like we’ll never be half as talented as them.
Here’s the thing. Your art may always be incomplete, but you are not.
You are complete. You are enough. and WE (notice that word was missing from the word chart) are all in this together. WE can help each other. WE can drive away fears and insecurities together.
We are all enough. Our art is good art. We’ve got this.