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Creativity coach, writing and creative process instructor, speaker, author of Around the Writer's Block: Using Brain Science to Write the Way You Want (Penguin/Tarcher 2012) and Dancing in the Dragon's Den (Red Wheel Weiser), Teaching Artist at the Loft Literary Center.

Waiting for Writer’s Block to Disappear?


What Are You Waiting For?

Some wise anonymous person said “Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass; it’s about learning how to dance in the rain.”

Are you waiting for inspiration? For that feeling of being caught up in the writing flow where it’s easy? Where you know exactly what to write? Where you feel eager to write instead of resistant?

Are you waiting for resistance to go away? For all your questions, doubts and fears to fade? For your Saboteur (aka Inner Critic) to realize you really are brilliant and stop attacking you?

Don’t Wait for It!

If you wait for inspiration, if you wait for resistance to go away, you’ll never write.

If you’re waiting, you’ve got it backwards. We don’t write because we’re inspired – we get inspired because we write.

We don’t write because we figured out what to write – we figure out what to write because we write.

You don’t write when your resistance goes away – your resistance goes away when you write.

Resistance Isn’t a Stop Sign

Resistance is not a sign that you should wait. It’s not a sign that you’ve failed somehow.

Resistance is a fact of life for writers. You are going to feel resistant. I feel resistant nearly every day. The trick is learning how to respond to your resistance.

Responses to Resistance

Running away from your resistance is not a good response.

Letting your resistance push you away from what you love and really want to do is not a good response.

Even fighting your resistance is not a good response. You end up using lots of energy fighting and still don’t do what you love to do.

Dance with Your Resistance

Like learning to dance in the rain, learning to dance with your resistance is a fabulous response.

Not so sure about that? Watch Tony Robbins demonstrate the power of dancing with fear (or resistance).

How do you dance with resistance? Well, first of all you have to show up on the dance floor – in other words, you show up at your desk and open the file or notebook. Then you have to move to the music – you put your fingers in motion and put words on the page or screen.

You have to risk looking stupid on the dance floor moving to the music – that is, you have to write something no matter how incomplete, inaccurate, awkward, foolish it might seem and no matter how much you fear someone will reject or criticize what you write.

What are you waiting for? Your resistance wants the next dance!

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