7 negative emotions writers feel—and how to overcome them

Apprehension about your ability to craft fluid, meaningful prose occasional can grip anyone who tries to string words together. Relax. You’re not alone. Here’s some helpful advice.

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Do you find writing interesting and pleasant—a time filled with self-discovery? Or is it stressful and unpleasant—sort of like a root canal combined with doing your income taxes?

I work with many people who associate writing mostly with the negative. The act of writing makes them feel anxious or frustrated, confused or fearful. Today I’m going to look at seven of the most commonly held negative emotions associated with writing and suggest ways you can deal with them.

My theory? If you can recognize these feelings—as they’re occurring—you can start to take charge of them and lessen their impact.

1. Anxiety

Anxiety is a feeling of worry, nervousness, fear or unease, typically about something with an uncertain outcome. If you feel anxiety about writing, you’re probably saying some of the following things to yourself:

My boss or client is going to hate this piece.

I could lose my job when my boss/client finds out I can’t write.

I’m going to look really foolish when this appears in print.

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