Keep going, even when you’re nervous

IMG_9222This is Rey. She stands guard by my laptop when I am writing. She stands for bravery to do things that make me nervous.

First, I had to assemble her. Legos are fun, but when I was a kid, they didn’t make me nervous. You got a box of assorted blocks and did whatever you wanted with them. Now they come in kits with booklets of directions. My logical brain loves to follow step-by-step assembly, but it’s also intimidating because I might screw up.

There are lots of things that make me nervous. I was too shy to order a soft pretzel at the mall when I was a kid, so my mom sent my younger brother who could barely reach the counter. I’ve come a long way since then, but a lot of phone calls and social interaction still get my heart beating fast. Just calling the doctor to make an appointment for a checkup feels like an accomplishment.

Sometimes my house makes me nervous. Can I take care of everything I need to do to keep it running smoothly? Parenting makes me nervous. The teenage years are about to hit and I hope I’m ready.

Writing makes me nervous. It’s my passion, but precisely because I love it so, I feel there’s more at stake. The job of a writer is to inform, entertain, or somehow connect with readers. In order to create true connection, a writer must be prepared to share her feelings, no easy feat for a private person like me. Even when you’re writing fiction, there has to be emotional truth in what you say. I worry that no one will like what I have to say, or worse yet, that they won’t care at all.

I think about what Rey would do. She would keep going, no matter what. 

 

 

If you enjoy reading my blog, please check out my first novel, Giving Myself Away, about a divorced mom making tough choices and a fresh start.

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When you don’t take your own advice

I was having a rotten day… running late, too much to do in not enough time, and feeling stressed and resentful. I consider myself a responsible person, but sometime during that morning, I lost a check that my employer had written out for me to deliver for an order.

I panicked, I dumped out the contents of my purse, and I complained to my coworkers, who were sympathetic and said, “It can happen to anyone.”

Yeah, but not to me, I was thinking.

Of course I agreed with them in theory that it could happen to anyone, and if it had happened to anyone else, I would have said the same thing. I would have told them to relax and it will probably turn up later, and even if it doesn’t, no big deal.

Later, I found out that one of my coworkers who was soothing me about the check just found out her godmother had died. That put things into perspective immediately. Not only was I acting silly about a little mistake, but I wasn’t being aware that other people around me are dealing with much worse a lot of the time.

I’m trying to catch myself in the act when I start putting myself down and treat myself the same way and with the same allowances for mistakes that I’d give anyone else. Sometimes I barely notice the negative self-talk; it’s like having a radio on in the background and only listening to what they’re saying now and then.

When I hear it now, I stop and ask myself “What would I tell my friend who made a mistake?” And I say to myself whatever I would have said to her.

P.S. Someone did find the missing check and put it in my work mailbox a few days later.

Have a great day and talk nicely when you’re talking to yourself!

Grete

[Image courtesy of public domain images on http://www.pixabay.com]

If you enjoy reading my blog, please check out my first novel, Giving Myself Away, about a divorced mom making tough choices and a fresh start.

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