4 Things That Hold Many Writers Back

If you’re at all like me:

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You dream of sipping hot coffee or tea on crisp mornings or quiet evenings, imagining what you’ll write about next.

You dream of sitting down to your computer — barefoot (and maybe braless, too) — and writing. Freely writing.

You dream of writing for a living. Or better yet, living for a writing.

But maybe there are some things standing in your way.

Maybe it’s one of these four things that hold many would-be writers back:

1. Money (or lack of)

Money tends to be the biggest one I hear about, so we’ll spend the most time on it here.

Here’s the thing: You cannot make money as a writer if you do not have any writing-related (or unrelated but complementary) income generators.

If you don’t monetize anything — be it your blog, books/ebooks, or your time (writing for others) — you cannot expect to ever earn a living as a writer.

I’m a published author who also currently work as a full-time writer for an integrated marketing agency and production company. Yes, my day job is as a writer. Like, “writer” is on my business card and everything. Prior to that, I was freelancing and consulting as a writer.

Or more accurately, I was struggling as a freelancer.

I had never attempted to freelance for a living. I had no idea what I was getting into, and how volatile a business it can be. One week: feast. The next 4 weeks: famine. Even if all your clients are happy with you (as mine were), they simply may not have enough work to throw your way.

And even the best full-time gig still has a set salary (not including raises). In both cases, freelancer or full-timer, I’m measured and compensated according to what I call “butt-in-the-seat” time. If you’re paid hourly, that’s it: You can only earn in an hour, up to as many hours as you can work…

…and, to be fair, you can only work for one client at a time.

The key is to work smarter, not harder. Here’s how I’m doing it:

I’m very grateful for my job. But with student loan debt to repay, as well as other aspirations that involve money, if there are appropriate, efficient (that’s key) ways to supplement my income and accelerate debt freedom, I want to do it!

That’s why I’ve started incorporating semi-passive, compounding, and smart ways to bolster income.

My favorite ways so far are:

  • Creating pay-per-click ad space here on my site, through AdSense.
  • Earning commission checks from Young Living, simply be sharing and empowering others. More about this one in the Wellness section below…

There’s a place for you on our team! Learn more >

Note: Simply joining does not ensure a certain income amount — but to get an idea of what’s possible, here’s the Young Living income disclosure statement.


2. Time

I hear this one a lot. You are the only person who can answer for why you don’t have time to write. Maybe it’s the season you’re in, and certain priorities deserve more or most of your time — that’s okay.

Usually, what happens for would-be writers is one of three things:

  • It’s just not a season in their lives when writing can be a high(ish) priority. Again, that’s okay! Maybe just keep a notebook and jot down ideas to revisit in a future season.
  • They’re actually wasting more time than they realize, and could reallocate some to writing. I’ve totally been convicted of this at times. Be willing to see — and eliminate or manage — some of your time-wasters.
  • They’re expecting a marathon of creativity instead of being content with a sprint. Sometimes I think, “I can’t write until I can write for 3 blissful, focused hours straight.” That’s great if you can have some dedicated time like that…but don’t diss the power of a solid 15 here and there. In fact, sometimes sprints like that can be better for me, because I have less time to overthink what I’ve just written.

3. Wellness

Writing is inherently sedentary. (Well, I guess an exception could be if you have a treadmill desk?) Historically, writers have also had a tendency to glorify unhealthy habits in the name of our craft. Which, seems harmless enough, but can have very, very real impacts on your life (not just your writing).

What my own journey with chronic illness has taught me is that if I’m not well enough write, it’s really hard to write well. Or at all.

This is why Young Living was such a natural (no pun intended) fit for me. As much as possible, I need to nurture my own wellness. And I’m learning to do that through more natural means. (The average person applies 300 chemicals to their body — 80 of which are applied before breakfast!)

And while there are other business opportunities like Young Living, for me it does not get easier than diffusing Lemon to feel more energized in the morning, massaging some Lavender into the back of my neck, or adding Peppermint to my glass of water. (And that’s just the beginning!)

The quality is exceptional, and incorporating them seamlessly fits in with my lifestyle.

There’s a place for you on our team! Learn more >

Note: Simply joining does not ensure a certain income amount — but to get an idea of what’s possible, here’s the Young Living income disclosure statement. 


4. Belief

This one is crucial — it’s the maker-breaker. I have seen — with myself and with others — that almost everything else hangs on this. Whether it’s believing you’re worth compensating for your writing, or believing that you have what it takes to build a writing life that you’ll love, belief is everything:

Belief in yourself. Belief in God, for a gift or calling He’s given to you that involves writing. Community is helpful with encouraging belief. (It’s another reason I picked my particular Young Living team, actually.)

Connecting with others who believe in you is helpful, but it still comes down to what you believe about yourself. Examine your thoughts about yourself and your writing, and seek God for how to overcome the belief blocks in your life.

(In my own life, I’ve found that it’s involved intentional time with the Lord, and willful change in the thoughts I’ll allow…to purposely feed truth and starve lies.)

I know it can be scary at times — but if you’ll connect with the right people, make incremental, intentional changes, roll up those sleeves, and choose courage instead of fear…it will be worth it. I truly believe that.


About Rebecca

IMG_0950-RebeccaHalton-CityLifestyle-160607A chronic illness diagnosis (and overall desire to feel better) has set me on a mission to discover greater freedom, wellness, and wholeness — while enjoying and expressing a God-given passion for writing. And I want to help you to, too!

If you’re willing (you may not feel “ready,” and that’s okay…that’s what our team is here for, too) we’d love to have you join our team. After signing up for a Young Living membership with me (#1743386), we’ll include you in our Facebook group where you can connect with other women like you!

You can access the group 24/7, and ask questions or find resources and inspiration for how to tap into Young Living’s potential (including financial).

You can also reach me with questions through Facebook / Twitter / Instagram.

Note: Simply joining does not ensure a certain income amount — but to get an idea of what’s possible, here’s the Young Living income disclosure statement.