Dwelling on Failure

Thursday, February 1, 2018 / 3:54 PM

I've developed a terrible habit of getting lost in potential criticism before I complete a task. I didn't think it was enough to paralyze me, but I have wondered lately if it's something that's stopped me in the past from attempting something.

"If you write that story, someone will accuse you of doing it all wrong."

That's a thought I realized has gone through my mind more and more, as of late. I'm afraid to pitch stories because I don't think I have something worth saying. I'm even more afraid, if I do write and publish it, it will be so poorly-received from all sides that I should rethink why I'm even in this business in the first place.

Don't get me wrong: valid criticism is important. I've been appreciative of the times when I can engage in thoughtful conversations when I have made an error. But sometimes, the Age of Twitter can bring out the shade-throwing and subtweeting; other times, the criticism comes rapidly enough to make you feel like you can't ever win.

Fearing failure is one thing. To dwell on it can be a painful reminder that perhaps you should start trying.

I'm working on this. I want to grow, and I've been fortunate to have people in my life who are encouraging that growth.

Does anyone else ever feel this way? And if you know this feeling, how do you move beyond it?

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