Too Afraid to Write?

A friend of mine, let’s call him Ben, is hoping to start a successful blog about writing. He has bought a domain name and had some work done on the format and layout. Ben is an aspiring writer and hopes that an active blog will be a great addition to his portfolio. With a long list of topics, and several entries written, you would think that Ben would be well on his way to “blogger” status. And yet, in the six months that he has paid for blog hosting, he has not posted a single entry.

This got me thinking about writing and the commitment it entails. On the surface it might seem that Ben is just lazy; I know that is not the case. I too have struggled with posting things online, where anyone might access them. It can be terrifying to let someone else read your writing, especially in such a public space (i.e. the internet). There is so much potential for criticism from an online audience, something that Ben and many others are not prepared for.

Are You Afraid of Criticism? Mather & Company, 1923

But, along with the potential for harsh criticism also comes the potential for intensely positive feedback. With billions of users scanning the web every day, you are almost guaranteed to encounter someone who has something nice to say about your writing. Although it can be scary, taking the leap into writing online can be very rewarding.

My advice to Ben and any other hesitant writers: Give yourself some credit! You worked hard on your writing, and other people are bound to notice eventually.

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1 Comment »

  • Thanks for this helpful article on overcoming fear, which definitely resonates with me having helped successful leaders publish their first books more than 100 times in the past decade.

    Still, no matter how successful someone is, we all have to understand, quickly recognize, and know how to defeat the top 5 professional fears. They are:
    1. The fear of silence
    2. The fear of sharing
    3. The fear of selling
    4. The twin fears of rejection and failure
    5. The fear of success

    Not surprisingly, most (not all) successful individuals initially assume they are the exception to the rule. “Fear? Who me? No way.”

    “No fear” isn’t just a Millennial motto for the adventurous. It’s a way of life. I know all this, yet yesterday I got hit with 1 of the 5 professional fears and responded 180 degrees opposite of what I know to do in such situations.

    I still believe “No fear” is a way of life, but it’s an imperfect way. Every time we give into fear, we need to humbly acknowledge it, remind ourselves what to do next time, and then move toward that “next time” as quickly as possible.

    –David Sanford,


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