That title suggests that writing online would be easy but those three words are highly deceptive. You all know that I have been struggling with my inner voice and have been trying to work out what I want to say in a way that is meaningful for myself but also for all of you to give your precious time to read. Last weekend I got to attend three amazing workshops in This is Knit with Kate O’Sullivan. I’ve been a follower of Kate since she started her podcast over on A Playful Day and I always love listening to her voice as I came away inspired and motivated.
Sometimes the best thing that you can do is to stop creating and just listen and so that is what I did for two glorious days in Dublin. I sat and listened to Kate just be herself as she navigated through the workshops. I know I love to write as long as it’s for me and I’m not trying to adopt another brand or merge with another voice. I always struggle with those as I like to tell a story in a particular way. You know what? It’s perfectly fine to write the way that I am comfortable with because that’s the secret, that’s me! That’s My voice, My personality and I want you to hear My stories told in My way. Will it be the best piece that you have ever read? Probably not but hopefully it will make you think or reflect.
I find that throughout my day I am constantly inspiring others or helping them create and telling them to just be themselves but it’s hard to take your own advice. I finally figured out that with me I just lack confidence from my lack of repetition. As my background is in chemistry my confidence to teach that subject came from a knowledge that I knew I was right. The maths worked out time and time again. But in the creative world, writing is subjective and it’s easy to second-guess oneself.
As a child, I use to read a lot. I always had a book. It was a family trait that I was happy to inherit. I could be anywhere, in anytime and be anybody by just reading a book and I loved it. I always had a large verbal range for a child because I liked to read and other children would make fun of that. So, I adapted and only spoke a certain way until I grew up and away from that behaviour. I made some wonderful friends who also like to read and debate and I began to be the person that I am now. Such is life.
When did I lose this confidence and love of the written word? I have no idea but I can tell you that it is still here and it’s one of the reasons I built this space and podcast so I could share so much with all of you. Listening to Kate over the weekend I realised that over time I had run to my comfort place and written in a particular way for media like Facebook and Twitter using the same language and following a particular approach to blogging because some academics deem it to be the ‘right’ way. Because of this, I did loose a little of what makes me unique.
By listening to such a strong, intelligent woman discuss writing and editing your own work, that feeling, you know the one I mean in the pit of your stomach? That feeling that you know what it is that you want to do and want to say finally started to become clear. The combination of being still and listening to someone who has been in your position and knows what you are feeling and thinking is incredibly empowering. Kate even used sentences that I have said to others but took no heed of until they were said to me and that feeling inside and my smile grew!
Why am I telling all of you this? Hopefully, you will sit back and reflect on your voice online. Have you read a post you wrote six months ago? What does it say to you? Does it make you smile? Does it get the point across that you wanted to? Are you really saying what you want to online or is your voice stifled by the need to create and push out content? Are you who you want to be online right now? I’ll let you in on a little secret, I am getting there and I’m walking and writing with a lot more confidence than before.