Rival tenants make themselves at home in my head. Pride lives in the penthouse. Procrastination lives in the basement. Comparison and jealousy room together. Insecurity takes up an entire floor. And they all insist on holding meetings to dictate how things get done in my life–especially my writing life.

Procrastination lives thinking tomorrow will always come.

Pride thumbs its nose at insecurity, but feeds jealousy and comparison.

Comparison eggs jealousy onto greater heights. Insecurity scurries around, sprinkling lies like dust on a mantle.

These all act as self-saboteurs to this writing life, but the worst of all is The Inner Critic.

The Inner Critic

The Inner Critic casts doubt on my ability and distorts my perception of others, myself, and undermines my success. It reminds me of my lack of education by casting doubt on my writing ability. It points to measurable stats—like numbers of subscribers, likes, and comments.

My inner critic convinces me to be paranoid toward others and myself. It casts questions about the motives behind each like and comment made on someone else’s work or my own.

The writing journey relies on our willing obedience to do the next thing God places before us. It may be as simple as writing a post and creating its graphic. But not creating with the goal of having something shared thousands of times. We trust Him with the outcome—whether it reaches ten people or ten thousand people.

But if I’m honest, in my heart of hearts, I want the ten thousand more than the ten. I grow frustrated and discouraged. I wrestle with God as my enemy instead of relying on Him as my commander-in-chief.

I must remember that I write to minister to hearts, but also I write as a ministry to God’s glory.

Writing Success

Certainly success is good and should be celebrated. But it cannot be measured in accolades. Success is obedience, strength of character, and perseverance. It’s trusting the One who started you on this journey. Trusting His faithfulness to complete it for you.

Self-sabotage, on the other hand, is anything that undermines our commitment to obedience. It disguises itself as fear, disappointment, doubt, procrastination, and perceived fraudulence. It talks in circles around why we can’t do what God has called us to do.

Our success is not defined by the accolades we receive, but by our willing, faithful obedience to God’s call on our lives. But in answering that call, we also fight the saboteurs of procrastination, pride, comparison, jealousy, and insecurity.

You’ve been gifted and called to string together words that resemble a pearl necklace. The treasure they bring to people’s hearts is beauty and reflection. Your words smooth the shards of a broken heart and bring a glimmer of hope to the suffering.

Why We Self-Sabotage

Somehow we believe we have failed if we don’t gain subscribers, grow a community, get that course done, or sell our product. And so we employ, subconsciously, the underminer of self-sabotage to self-protect.

Assurance of how this writing life will turn out is not a guarantee. Success is putting one letter after the other. It’s hearing the doubts in our hearts and reassuring them of Truth. It’s learning how to use procrastination to our advantage rather than letting it undermine our work in progress.

We can do this by working on multiple projects at one time. While one project is in the edits phase, research another, and develop a rough draft for a third. Then rotate between the three. It might seem like procrastinating, but in reality, it’s making steady progress on multiple projects.

When we run into pride and insecurity, we get this beautiful opportunity to learn what it means to be humble of heart. When we realize that self feeds pride and insecurity, we shift our focus from ourselves to our Heavenly Father. True humility recognizes everything is from Him, for Him, and to Him and has nothing to do with us.

As jealousy and comparison rear their ugly heads, our identity, which is firmly planted in God’s heart, is refined. When we focus on others, we lose sight of our own value and other people’s value as well. We can choose to celebrate each other rather than compete with one another.

That inner critic, which wreaks havoc, is afraid of failure and believes it to be imminent. It uses self-sabotage to control when and how we fail.

Control over failure is the real reason we self-sabotage.

Our Counter Attack

Instead, we can counter the tendency to self-sabotage by placing our hopes, dreams, and current works in progress into God’s hands. He is a good and gracious Father Who loves us.

We are responsible for our obedience, but God is responsible for the outcome. Can you trust that? Can you relinquish your idea of success and trade it for His?

That’s the way through self-sabotage. In order to counterattack the subtle weapons of self-sabotage, we must relinquish control. It’s an illusion anyway. But trust is real and true, won through the hard, the messy, and the hurt.

Write on, friend! Learn to wrestle with your Inner Critic. Rest and receive the One who has called you to this journey. Defeat the saboteurs by trusting God’s heart and plan for your writing life–and write on!

“In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps.” Proverbs 16:9


More on Soul Care

Remember Your First Calling
Redeeming Rejection
How to Stop the Never Ending Gabe of Approval


[click_to_tweet tweet=”Success is obedience, strength of character, and perseverance. It’s trusting the One who started you on this journey and His faithfulness to complete it for you. ” quote=”Success is obedience, strength of character, and perseverance. It’s trusting the One who started you on this journey and His faithfulness to complete it for you. “]

[click_to_tweet tweet=”Sabotage is anything that undermines our commitment to obedience. It is disguised as fear, disappointment, doubt, procrastination, and perceived fraudulence. It’s talking in circles around why we can’t do what God has called us to do.  ” quote=”Sabotage is anything that undermines our commitment to obedience. It is disguised as fear, disappointment, doubt, procrastination, and perceived fraudulence. It’s talking in circles around why we can’t do what God has called us to do.  “]

[click_to_tweet tweet=”The Inner Critic casts doubt on my writing ability by pointing to measurable stats. It casts questions about the motives behind each like and comment.” quote=”The Inner Critic casts doubt on my writing ability by pointing to measurable stats. It casts questions about the motives behind each like and comment.”]

[click_to_tweet tweet=”We counter the tendency to self-sabotage by placing our hopes, dreams, and current works in progress into God’s hands. He is a good and gracious Father Who loves us.” quote=”We counter the tendency to self-sabotage by placing our hopes, dreams, and current works in progress into God’s hands. He is a good and gracious Father Who loves us.”]