Even though there’s a risk in publishing a blog about writer’s resistance, I’m grateful for the opportunity to exchange ideas with talented writers like you.
The risk? In a nutshell, we get more of what we focus our attention on. According to extensive social science research in the field of Appreciative Inquiry, what we expect and pay attention to profoundly influences the outcomes we experience.
In one study, social scientists told elementary school teachers that, based on tests students took at the end of the previous school year, one group of students in their new class would excel this coming year and one group of students would struggle to keep up. By the end of the school year, every child lived up to – or down to – her or his teacher’s expectations.
When teachers expect students to perform well, they do. When teachers expect students to fail, they do. (The researchers decided it would be unethical to repeat the experiment; after all, who wants their child to be randomly selected to fail or even to be just average?)
Likewise, AI theorists demonstrate that organizations or individuals who focus on being problem-solvers (which sounds like a good idea) get more problems to solve, while organizations or individuals who focus on leveraging their strengths get more strengths to leverage.
A blog on writer’s resistance and writer’s block could easily yield more resistance and block, but I don’t see my writing, teaching or coaching as a way to fix writers with problems. That would mean I’d attract writers who see themselves as lacking and I’d be forever trying to bolster them up.
This blog is focused on Overcoming resistance. We have to acknowledge the reality of resistance because it happens and if we don’t understand why it happens, it gets worse. We have to learn to identify the subtle forms our resistance takes so we can respond appropriately to it.
But our primary focus is on how we get past resistance to Enjoying Our Writing.
Thanksgiving is just a few days away and I invite you to make a list of the things you are grateful for in your writing life. Who inspires you? Who challenges you to be the best writer you can be? What’s the best thing you’ve done for yourself as a writer? What excites and engages you in your writing?
In short, what do you want more of?