I’ve seen many, many writers who believe they need to be inspired in order to actually sit down and write. Or that they need inspiration to write a great piece of art.
Here’s the tale of someone who things along those lines:
Chris has many rituals to call forth inspiration. Before writing, he goes for a little walk, then makes a special tea which he pours into a special mug. He puts on his writing shirt. Finally, he sits in his special writing place, calls up his file and…
…nothing. All the joy he had felt about writing fizzles away.
Trying to ignore the sinking feeling in his stomach, he reads the last paragraph he wrote, and finds it horrible. He deletes it and reads the one before it.
Desperation sets in. He closes his eyes and recites his favorite mantra for a few times, feeling dread as his mind starts to fog up. He opens his eyes and stares at the screen for a few more minutes before giving up.
He now has written -70 words.
It’ll be days, before he tries again.
Of course, this is an exaggeration. Truth is, however, that I have seen and experienced elements of this.
There are many, many myths and limiting beliefs about writing. And the idea that we have to be inspired, is one of them. But trying to force inspiration practically never works. In fact, that’s a great way of creating a massive block for yourself.
Rituals *can* work. They can help us find the right mood, that is true. But the more you depend on rituals, the worse they often get. It’s like an addiction, you have to increase the dosage for it to work. So be aware that it could be a dangerous path if you decide to create writing rituals.
Basically, they are a way of trying to trick our minds. We writers are smart people, however, so tricking the mind doesn’t work very well for us.
So how do I get inspired, you may ask.
The answer is: You don’t, necessarily.
You just sit down and write the next sentence, as best as you can. And then the next. And the next. It helps if you have a bit of an idea where the story is going, because usually, stories don’t pop into our heads full-grown.
And of course, it’s wonderful when inspiration hits.
But don’t wait for it, or you won’t ever finish your novel. I’m serious.
Instead, tap away that belief and start writing by doing the work. You can always edit what you have written. You can always make it better. And the more you write, the easier it gets. Promise.
Here are your tapping suggestions:
Even though I have always believed that inspiration is necessary to write, I’m okay the way I am, and I’m open to the possibility that writing is a craft that gets better with practice.
Even though I have always believed I need to be inspired to create great art in my writing, I’m totally okay the way I am, and I’m open to the possibility that I can write well even when I’m not inspired.
Even though I have been taught that writers must rely on inspiration in order to create really great works, I’m totally okay the way I am, and I now give myself permission to write anyway, and let inspiration sneak when while I’m putting down words.
How do you feel about inspiration?
Do you use any rituals to force inspiration?
What happened while you were tapping?
And finally – what are you creating right now?
Would love to hear from you!
Image Source: F. Moebius
PS: You’ll find my personal experiences with these beliefs in the comment section. Because I am tapping with these very sentences, I’m inviting you to join me on this journey, and share your experiences.
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