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Crafting Confidence: A Songwriter’s Guide to Beating Self-Doubt

The main thing that destroys the creativity in any songwriter is their own self doubt.

We all have it and we all deal with it in our own individual way.

I find it strange that the things we take for granted were initially invented or created by individuals who were confident, courageous and passionately determined enough to step up to the plate and develop a (sometimes radical) new idea.

Imagine what kind of a world we’d live in if:

  • Albert Einstein believed in his bad school reports and gave up on life?
  • Alexander Graham Bell gave up just before he invented the Telephone?
  • Thomas Edison believed the naysayers and turned off his Light Bulb idea?

The list goes on and on…

As a songwriter, having confidence that whatever you say is worth something is at the very essence of what writing songs is all about.

  1. It’s common for novice songwriters to grapple with self-doubt. The key to overcoming this in songwriting is to understand and neutralise this doubt, recognising it as a natural aspect of the creative process.
  2. You’re not alone in this struggle; many songwriters experience self-doubt. It’s perfectly normal. The challenge lies in continuing to write even when doubt hinders your creativity. Daily stresses can often impede your progress in crafting a remarkable song.
  3. Yet, without doubt, would you ever fear failure in a constructive way? A balanced fear of not producing compelling songs is crucial, as it can be harnessed to enhance your songwriting. Let it motivate you to delve deeper and craft superior songs.
  4. Rejection is a frequent encounter for songwriters, and it weighs heavier when it comes from someone whose opinion you deeply respect.
  5. What if they believe you’re incapable of writing a powerful song? Our self-perception is often influenced by our assumptions about others’ opinions of us.
  6. Nothing stifles inspiration and songwriting more effectively than your own internal censoring. This worry, stemming from a fear of failure, is a common obstacle.
  7. However, consider this: perhaps you’re an exceptional and talented songwriter. How will you discover your true potential if you don’t persist in writing and revising?
  8. Doubts about your abilities often surface following reminders of past failures or unmet expectations. Yet, the greatest failure is not realising your potential.
  9. At times, it may seem illogical. You might be surrounded by people who love and respect you, yet still, you doubt yourself, creating a sense of failure in your mind.
  10. Creativity isn’t exclusive to those who produce commercially successful songs. We all possess creative abilities. Envision yourself achieving your goals and the fulfilment that will follow. In essence, picture yourself excelling.
  11. The world eagerly awaits unique perspectives in music, and there’s always a demand for songs that resonate on a personal level. We all experience moments of self-doubt, especially when witnessing the success of others.
  12. For beginners in songwriting, there’s ample opportunity to learn and create outstanding songs. This skill can indeed be acquired. The success stories of others serve as proof. However, self-belief is essential. I can cite an excellent example of a Hall Of Fame songwriter who experienced typical self-doubt.

Yes, I remember starting out on my songwriting journey all those years ago.

I was full of passion and enthusiasm but not much knowledge. Once I started getting some songwriting knowledge, experience and musical theory under my belt I started developing this thing called self doubt.

I started to compare myself to others and, at the same time my inner critic started to plant seeds of doubt in my head.

Eventually I got over myself and now the willingness to write songs comes easily to me however, in getting there I went through a lot of pain.

I’m sure most songwriters experience this at least once in their lives. If you’ve had a similar experience let me know. I’d love to hear about it.

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