Do you believe in you?

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I found this lovely image on Pinterest and it’s from kidlit author Dallas Clayton’s book.

I want you to think back for a sec: when is a time in your life that you really believed in yourself? What was present in your life that allowed you to do this monumentally difficult thing? How did you keep the bastards from getting you down?

For me, I would say that I truly believed that one day I would be published. Statistically, this wasn’t looking good. And I kept getting rejected. After a lifetime of dabbling in writing I spent six solid years really going for it. Sacrifices were made and tears were shed. There were definitely dark nights of the soul. But still, I had this knowing inside me and I trusted that. I trusted my gut. And it worked! But the key here is that there was a lot that suggested it wouldn’t, but I keep blinders on as much as I could to those things. A very “I think I can, I think I can” mentality.

Believing in yourself starts with knowing yourself and learning how to read your gut. It’s hard work. It requires constant honest assessments, radical changes, humility, and time. I believe in myself, but I don’t believe I can do whatever I set my mind to. I believe I can do the things I have love and aptitude for, things that really are within reach. I don’t believe I’d pass the LSAT or graduate from med school or suddenly be able to learn every language that interests me. I know my limitations BUT I also know – or try to discover – which limitations I can overcome and which I really can’t. So, believing in yourself isn’t a Carte Blanche. But it can be a deeply empowering and life altering practice. It does require that you set up your life so that you give yourself space to put this belief into practice. This might look like increasing your writing time, creating a physical space at home to write, or getting some child care once a week to work on your book. The process will be different for everyone.

You are so much more awesome than you give yourself credit for. Believe in your badassery and behave accordingly! Happy Friday, friends.

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