One of the ways the Saboteur stops us is to use rhetorical questions as barriers. Questions like:
- Who do you think you are?
- Who do I think I am to write _______?
- Why on earth would anyone want to read what I write?
- What makes me even think I can write _______?
- How could I even begin?
Any of these sound familiar? Take a few minutes to record what other rhetorical questions your Saboteur uses to keep you safe.
You know, safe from embarrassing yourself, looking stupid or getting rejected.
Safe from making mistakes and all the learning and growing that come from mistakes.
Safe from following your dream, giving yourself a shot, and growing as a writer.
Disarming the Saboteur
And like any powerful tool, a question in the hands of the Saboteur is a dangerous weapon. It is our never-ending job to disarm the Saboteur.
Start by taking the rhetorical, “you idiot” tone out of these questions. Ask them as genuine questions.
“Who do I think I am?” is an intriguing existential question when you really think about it. Change “How could I even begin?” to “How could I begin?” and you open your mind to possibilities.
Freewrite responses to any of the questions the Saboteur has thrown in your way and you’ll find a way around the Saboteur.
What questions does your Saboteur use to stop you?