“So remember these two things: you are talented and you are original. Be sure of that. I say this because self-trust is one of the very most important things in writing.”
Brenda Ueland, Art as a Way of Life
Brenda Ueland — I love her! Her classic on the creative process, If You Want to Write, is an encouragement counselor between two covers. Every page offers a gentle but firm reminder that we are the masters of our own destinies when it comes to writing. We have everything we need already inside us. We just need to learn to let it sing and soar.
Art as a Way of Life sounds like another must-read: Brenda’s comment that “self-trust is one of the very most important things in writing” hits the nail right on the head, doesn’t it? With self-trust, we can climb any mountain and overcome any obstacle in front of us in pursuit of our dreams. Without it, we’re like leaves blown in the wind.
But what does it mean to have self-trust, to trust in ourselves? We need search no further than my trusty Compact Oxford English Dictionary: It defines “trust” as “firm belief in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of someone or something.” That sums it up
nicely, doesn’t it? When we believe that we are talented and original, as Brenda says so
well, we have self-trust. And when we trust ourselves:
We’re reliable: We can count on ourselves to show up, to do our work, and to keep on doing it until we get where we need to go. We believe we have what it takes.
We’re true: Whatever it is we’re writing, we’re true to the vision we have of our stories, to the truth we want and need to tell as we see it.
We’re able: We have confidence in our ability, in our power and capacity to do what we want to do, however difficult it may seem at times and however long it takes us.
We’re strong: We have the energy and endurance to hang on until we catch on, to persevere and fight through any rough patches we hit.
Self-trust: It’s the gift we give ourselves that keeps on giving. Write on!