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7 Tips to Overcome Writing Shyness

writing shynessWhen someone reads something that you have written they have access to a part of your innermost self. This is less true for a quick email sent to confirm an appointment as opposed to an essay on the love of your life, of course, as certain topics or types of writing are more personal than others. There is, however, an amount of personal exposure that accompanies anything that is written and read by another, and overcoming writing shyness is an essential part of improving as a writer.

As with any obstacle, understanding writing shyness is the first step in conquering it. Perhaps you are nervous that your ability will be judged as substandard, or you are wary of revealing your position on an issue. These are two separate considerations, but they are both addressed in the first tip:

1. Know your audience

This entails analyzing the forum and context that will surround what you have written, your level of anonymity (if any) and the degree of personal information that you will disclose. Writing a comment on an article will likely not attract as much attention to your technical writing skills from your readers, and you might even be posting under a pseudonym. So, if this is true, you have less to worry about with regard to stating your opinion on the topic compared with posting a comment on Facebook, where it will be linked to your name and all of your contacts will be much more likely to read it. Understanding the differences between where and what you are writing and who will know you have written it is the place to start to increase your confidence in having others read your work.

Having acquired a grasp of where, what and how you feel comfortable writing, consider the next tip:

2. Write as much as you can

Even if you are just writing comments on other people’s writing, the experience of exposing yourself will make it easier to have other people read what you have written. Joining groups for authors is another outlet to display your efforts.
It is more than likely that along the way someone will comment on what you have written.

Thus, you must keep in mind:

3. Take it with a grain of salt

Everyone is entitled to their opinion. There are those who will find fault with anything. If someone is critical of you, look for anything constructive and move on.

As well, remember that writing is its own reward. Not everyone will find themselves a famous bestselling author:

4. Enjoy the ride

Writing is its own reward, and brings benefits that cannot be found elsewhere. Receiving feedback, even when it is critical, is secondary to the positive effects that writing brings.

That being said, do not hesitate to continue to hone your craft. Put some effort into it:

5. Fight the good fight

Keep getting better. Use the resources that are readily available to improve your vocabulary, structure and tone. You can avail yourself of people who are willing to assist you in improving yourself with constructive criticism. Learn new words and ways to express yourself and you will be more confident and willing to have others see your efforts.
A common bit of advice for those who must speak in front of a group is to imagine your audience listening in their underwear. This renders them less threatening, and is meant to impart confidence for the speaker.

A similar approach can help a writer with their shyness:

6. Imagine your readers at their weakest

Turn your anxiety into strength. YOU are the one who is brave enough to put yourself out there for everyone to see. You must embrace this, and know that those who might criticize you are more than likely not exposing themselves to similar criticism.
Remember: “Those who can, do; those who cannot, criticize”. Examine those who attack you, if any do, and see if they are willing to give their names or if they are hiding in the internet and throwing stones. Why should you worry about some anonymous keyboard warrior?

Finally, make the decision to write and not be afraid of whatever may result.

7. Write without worry

So what if someone disagrees with you or thinks that you are a bad writer? Writing more will bring improvement and greater confidence. Being criticized will bring greater tolerance. The more you do it, the easier it will become.

In conclusion, I ask you to consider the words of John Quincy Adams, American statesman, diplomat and sixth President of the United States:

“Courage and perseverance have a magical talisman, before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish into air.”

Bailey Belmont is a professional writer, blogger and learning geek. She is here to share her thoughts and ideas on how to use writing to expand our personal and professional frontiers. Keep updated with Bailey via Facebook or check her Professional Blog.

{ 14 comments… add one }
  • This is good to read and learn something new

  • Well this is definitely what i need right now. Most of times shyness ruins all the fun in writing. Thanks

    • Bailey Belmont

      Happy to help you, Manik! Just start writing – and you will gain confidence in it!

      • Just starting is the secret to a lot of things, Bailey – thanks for saying it.

        • Bailey Belmont

          I am sure that it is the only secret to all things.

          But you should remember: it is never too late to start writing.

          I have written an article on my blog about authors who wrote their bestsellers in old ages.

          You know what?… their books gained popularity!

  • Tenho observado que ao longo do tempo, conforme venho pesquisando e lendo muitos sobre vários artigos na internet e livros, tenho me tornado mas a vontade para elaborar as minhas postagens no meu dia a dia, cada vês que exercito a mente a escrita melhora em todos os aspectos.

  • Thanks ! I really need this. Most bloggers in my niche are successful because they are brave enough to blog about their personal opinion.

    Yet, I am as introvert, hiding under my pen name are still afraid to show my honest opinion.

    That is why I am unable to write as much as I want..
    dedauncomel.com recently posted..Senaman Terbaik Dan Sesuai Dilakukan Di RumahMy Profile

  • That is so good to read. I also wanted to add my thoughts about it.
    You should write in the same tone as you used while talking to someone. It would be easy for both writer and reader. Moreover, it would also help you in composing a better article.
    Anyways, thanks for sharing
    Jayant recently posted..How to Get LG G6 Like Rounded Display Corners on any Android Phone & TabletMy Profile

    • Jayant… yes, the way you speak is often a good writing voice… without all the ums and ahs.

  • i_zoe

    how can one sharpen his skills to become a proffessional freelancer

    • Lots of info on this site and others… read lots, books, magazines as well as online, and write often. It’s hard to get worse at something you practice.

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