One of my biggest reasons for procrastinating is overthinking the problem or task at hand. I let a whole lotta nothin' build up into a serious something in my head that keeps me from just doing the damn thing.
Writing is easily and all-too-regularly one of those things.
I was at coffee with one of my contributors today catching up and talking about blogging. The hype we build in our heads about the potential reactions and ramifications that might come from putting our opinions out there; that's enough to paralyze our thoughts before we've even got one word written.
Ever feel this way about tackling something?
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I've been struggling with this in a new writing gig I've taken on recently (more on that next week!) Writing for a big publication is nerve-wracking. I get so wrapped up in trying to get the voice and tone of their brand right, my true and authentic voice got lost in the way. Nothing I write seems good enough, so I procrastinate. I have so much trouble getting all the pieces together in my head in a way that flows right, and there never seems to be a good time to crank it out. I'd rather do almost anything else than just sit down and focus on making it happen.
Does it reflect my writing style?
What will their readers think?
What is my writing style anyway?
I turned in a post this week to said publication, and got feedback I didn't know I needed. They told me to infuse more of my opinions and take it outside of their normal box.
Of course. That's why I was chosen to write for them in the first place! My voice, my writing style and my opinions are what attracted them to me, and I was so nervous about getting their brand right I'd forgotten that.
And then I remembered how I felt when nothing I was producing seemed right. It didn't feel right because it wasn't me in the first place. My contributor said he feels the same way every time he tries to write a post for me!
Sometimes we get so caught up in getting things perfect - often on terms we let other people decide - that we never allow ourselves the time and mind space to just take a stab at it. To let that creativity just flow. It might not be right the first time, and it might never be perfect - but just getting it out there is what matters.
More often than not, it turns out exactly as we need it to.