Development Resources site
insecurities and doubts
may not be just a matter of objective competence. For example, two
actors noted for being able to create distinctive and powerful
characters have made revealing comments about their own identity
late Peter Sellers once said, "If you ask me to play myself, I will not
know what to do. I do not know who or what I am." And Jennifer Jason
Leigh [left] has claimed, "As a person, I don't really register that
~ ~ ~ ~
writer John Banville has won The Booker Prize, the world's most
prestigious award for new fiction. Judges said his novel "The
Sea" is a
“masterly study of grief, memory and love recollected."
before the announcement, the author seemed certain that he would not
win: "I tend to think all my books are bad,” he said. .. [LA Times Oct 11, 2005]
~ ~ ~ ~
Talese on writing his latest book
Due in 1995, "A
Writer's Life" was delivered 10 years late.
In memos to himself, Talese was unforgiving: "Where are we going? Just
completed no progress for one month!" he said in one note.
Despairing, he confessed: "I continue asking myself, as I have before,
what am I doing here? Where's the story? What's the point? Does it
matter?" Echoing a writer's worst fear in yet another memo, he asked
himself: "When are you going to get back into print???"
the end, Talese found the narrative thread that had eluded him for
years, offering in the bargain a revealing glimpse not only of his own
life and times but of the wrenching self-doubts a writer sometimes
As Talese has described it, "Writing is like driving in a tunnel with
the lights out. You don't really know where you're going and it's never
a straight path.... At some point, you get to a point of total
frustration as a writer," said Talese.
"And so you have to go out and
do something, even if you don't know if it's the correct thing to do.
You just do it! Get out there! Forget whether it's right or wrong. Just
marathon quest for a new book led back to...
himself.” By Josh Getlin, Los Angeles Times April 23, 2006
Carolyn Cole / LAT)
~ ~ ~ ~
honesty about oneself and the quality of one's work. Over
can be debilitating, but insufficient self-criticism is the handmaiden
of mediocrity and, often, failure.
Hamilton -- quoted in list The
Written Word -- Quote a Day 4/6/04: Self-Criticism
/ self concept.
~ ~ ~ ~
and other artists are often self-deprecating and openly critical of
their work. Sometimes humorously or facetiously, but often seriously.
Are talented people more likely to be critical of themselves and their
Pursuing excellence demands evaluating both our work and
ourselves in various ways, but highly talented people are, according to
writers on giftedness, often susceptible to perfectionism and
unreasonably high standards and expectations that can be self-limiting.
number of actors report being dissatisfied with their performances on
film; some won’t even watch dailies or see their finished movies.
And a high level of talent does not assure you will always feel you are
“good enough.” Meryl Streep admitted in an interview last
year, “I have varying degrees of confidence and self-loathing....
You can have a perfectly horrible day where you doubt your
Lesley Sword, director of Gifted and Creative
Services, Australia, notes in an article that gifted children [who
happen to grow up to be gifted adults] are “highly self critical
and over reactive to the criticism of others. They express
dissatisfaction with themselves; they see what ‘ought to
be’ in themselves... They have a vision of perfectionism that
they measure themselves against and they can become despondent
sometimes even depressed, at their perceived failure.”
that indicates the shadow side of being overly critical of our work,
our abilities and identity: it can deflate and depress, corrode our
professional and recreational athletes have found
listening to the Self-Esteem
Supercharger before a game or match improves their performance.
Professional soccer player Michael Cestone says, "I had tried
subliminal tapes with limited results, so I had to try the Paraliminals
because they were different.
"I was desperately looking for something to help me prepare for the
season. I noticed results immediately.
"The first time I used the tape I felt more focused and was able to
read the game better, as well as make faster decisions. That was only
More details about the above program on
~ ~ ~
|Step 3. It's time to rebel
any old memories of limitation. Against scars from criticism. Against
denied encouragement and recognition. Just rebel!!! Get over it!
OK -- so you came to believe that something was wrong with
you. That you were somehow imperfect or limited.
Just stop buying into that. It's false, and no longer appropriate for
who you really are. That's what is meant by the expression, "You become
exactly what, and who, you think you are."
is, you are NOT a poor writer or an inept actor -- but if you BELIEVE
you are, you WILL act in that way.
~ ~ ~ ~
have varying degrees of confidence and self-loathing.... You can have a
perfectly horrible day where you doubt your talent. It could be about
not feeling able to achieve a certain
scene or about an emotion you feel you weren't able to get to... Or
that you're boring and they're going to find out that you don't know
what you're doing... any one of those things.
Streep .. [The
Sunday Times Magazine, October 2004]
> photo as Sen.
Eleanor Shaw in The Manchurian Candidate (2004, Paramount)
~ ~ ~ ~
Winslet : Over
the years, the stakes have become higher for me. Sometimes I wake up in
the morning before going oft to a shoot, and I
can't do this;
I'm a fraud. They're
going to fire me -- all these things. I'm fat; I'm ugly; I look like a
mag., Nov, 2000]
> related page :...impostor
~ ~ ~ ~
Traits of creative people
Creativity and Creative Problem Solving list, June 5, 2000, post by
Robert Alan Black -
author of book Broken
Crayons: Break Your Crayons and Draw Outside the Lines
1980 as part of my doctoral studies of Creative Thinking I did a study
of the traits of Creative People. I chose two educational journals and
two psychological journals and searched for articles on the traits of
creative people from 1950 to 1980. In total their were over
150 researchers and experts on creativeness, creative
thinking, creativity and creative people.
the list came over 400 separate traits. From that I pulled out 32...
not motivated by money sense of
destiny adaptable tolerant of
world differently see
possibilities able to
independent severely critical ....
more on page - giftedness:
~ ~ ~ ~
often so terrified of being imperfect. They don't want to be laughed at.
And it holds them back. Young men are taught to take criticism in a kind of
have documented that women believe that approval is like
oxygen, which can make it too painful to be a risk-taker or leader because
you're too visible and the criticism hurts so much. ...
Women have been
raised not to step up to the
plate. They're supposed to
think it's cute
to say, "Oh, I can't do it. Oh God, I
can't believe this." That's
but it's really a lot of whining.
Naomi Wolf -
quote and photo from Woodhull
more on perfectionism 2
~ ~ ~ ~
team of researchers reported in the Journal of Personality and Social
 that women who wear skimpy swimsuits find that their ability to
solve academic puzzles shrinks.
problem, says psychologists Barbara Frederickson and Tomi-Ann Roberts
is that women are so self-conscious..
they tend to "step outside their bodies"
to view their looks critically.
test subjects "were so self-conscious about wearing a bathing suit that
it affected their mental alertness," Roberts said.
more on body image 2
~ ~ ~ ~
at the organizational level can affect the individual level.
because we have an inner
voice of blame, criticism and fear within us,
we avoid the
work necessary. ..,
creative strength is a prerequisite for organizational strength.
in this individual creative
process ironically is destruction.
We must destroy our Voice
to be fully
Ray: - from "Creativity
in Business: Individual Enlightenment
The InnerEdge Newsletter, Oct/Nov.99]
Michael L. Ray, Ph.D.
of book Creativity
~ ~ ~ ~
of us perpetuate negative
self-talk about talents that we don't accept.
Self-criticism can seriously
potential talent that wants to be expressed.
This negative self-talk comes in
a variety of forms.
we hear it in our own
It says things like: "I don't really have it.
I'm not good enough. It won't
I'll fail. I'll make mistakes and look foolish.
I can't make a living with my
behind our fear and self-doubt...
in our heads, it is possible to disempower them.
Lucia Capacchione, PhD
- from her book: Putting
Your Talent to Work
external standards are
removed, the expressive arts
allow our soul voice to
flow through more
- from her book: Living
With Feeling: The
Art of Emotional Expression
~ ~ ~ ~
Seligman.. has described an effective
technique for countering what he refers to as "catastrophic thoughts."
trick is first to recognize the despairing idea -- "I'm the weakest
employee in the department, and I'm probably going to get fired" -- and
then check it against real evidence, as if the statement were being
uttered by another person trying to make you miserable.
arguing with yourself in this way, Seligman has shown, you can separate
beliefs from facts, defusing many pessimistic assumptions by editing
them according to logic and evidence. ...
find, for example, that depressed people often turn small foibles and
mistakes into stinging self-criticism.
and 1980s, Seligman and other investigators showed that depressed
people who learn to recognize and disarm this kind of reflexive
pessimism and self-attacking can free themselves of
worthlessness, fatigue and other symptoms of the condition.
from article Searching for a happiness strategy by
Times, Dec 9, 2002]
quotes on positive psychology
> book: Authentic
Happiness: Using the New Positive Psychology to
Realize Your Potential for Lasting Fulfillment - by Martin
E. Seligman, PhD.
~ ~ ~ ~
Gifted children.. are
highly self critical and over
to the criticism of others.
dissatisfaction with themselves; they see what
"ought to be" in themselves
and they can be unhappy with "what
have a vision of perfectionism that they measure themselves against and
they can become despondent
sometimes even depressed,
at their perceived failure.
from article Psycho-social
Needs: Understanding The Emotional, Intellectual and Social
Of Growing Up Gifted - By Lesley Sword
~ ~ ~ ~
intense gifted people often experience intense inner conflict, self-criticism,
and feelings of inferiority. The medical community often sees these
as symptoms and labels gifted people
~ ~ ~ ~
are passionately engaged with their talent but are constantly separated
from the creative experience by relentless self-criticism, self-doubt,
and feelings of inferiority often suffer from another type of block.
accompanied by depression and the periodic shutting down of their
Issues with Recognized and Unrecognized Gifted Adults by Mary
Are you determined to do your best at all costs?
you feel inadequate to measure up to your personal standards?
consumed with self-doubt and self-criticism?
self-perfection or the perfection of your life's work the central
driving force of your existence?
> from 7. Perfectionism section of self-tests: giftedness /
Jason Leigh: I look at
acting as my life. I invest
almost everything I can in it. ... I do a lot of head stuff before I
get there, but once I'm
there, doing my part, it feels instinctual and it's where I'm freest.
you're going for something that's
honest, you have to be very honest with yourself. You're facing the
about yourself all the time. Some of those truths you don't always
because they can highlight your limitations or your inabilities. These
are the stumbling blocks that you have to get past somehow.
... It's exciting and it's paralyzing. ............[Interview mag.,
Quit Your Day Job" : 3
Ways to Keep Criticism from Getting to You - By Valerie
are two kinds of negative feedback, the kind that – as
painful as it is
– is generally accurate and helpful and the kind that is
Inner Critic (issue of Living The Creative Life
newsletter - includes book references on dealing with destructive
Dialogue - By Remez Sasson
process and effect of these inner conversations is similar to
affirmations. Constant thinking about the same subject influences the
subconscious mind, which consequently accepts these thoughts and words
and acts on them. Negative inner dialogues bring negative results, and
positive inner dialogues bring positive results. You can use this
process to your advantage.
and decisions faced by gifted and talented females - by Sally
M. Reis, Ph.D.
[excerpt:] On the other hand, concern over
mistakes, perceived parental expectations, and perceived parental
criticisms were the salient factors for the gifted
unhealthy/dysfunctional female perfectionists. They possessed a
fixation about making mistakes that resulted in a high state of
anxiety. Their definitions of perfectionism focused on not making any
Negative self-talk - by
"When negative self-talk robs us of our enthusiasm
for our dreams, we're suffering from the classic creative block...
Self-criticism can seriously injure potential talent that
wants to be expressed." These quotes from the book "Putting
Your Talent to Work"
by Lucia Capacchione and Peggy Van Pelt emphasize the damaging impact
of some "inner dialogues" we may have with ourselves.
Self-Esteem and the Gifted Adult - by Stephanie S. Tolan
gifted adults seem to know very little about their minds and how they
from more "ordinary" minds. The
result of this lack of self-knowledge is often low, sometimes
low self esteem. Though
women are particularly hard-pressed in our culture to recognize and
utilize unusual intelligence, uncertainty about gifts can affect both
and females, especially those who are not recognized as intellectual
~ ~ ~
Being Mean to Yourself: A Story About Finding the True
Meaning of Self-Love
the Self : The Psychology of Confidence and Respect
Esteem at Work
Woman's Self-Esteem: Struggles and Triumphs in the Search for
Are Good Enough : Overcoming Feelings of Inadequacy
Katselas. Dreams Into Action: Getting What You Want! Life
need not be something we are in awe of, overwhelmed and frightened by.
Nor do we need to be continually critical in our approach to
fear and criticism of our own lives, or others', lead us to a lower
self-esteem, a disastrous response...
Stan Taubman. Ending
the Struggle Against Yourself : A
Workbook for Developing Deep Confidence and Self-Acceptance
Valerie Young. The
Impostor Syndrome How
to Feel As Bright and Capable As Everyone Seems to Think You Are
Valerie Young's often humorous and always on target insight into why so
many bright, capable women seem to doubt their competence. Learn
what the Impostor Syndrome is -- and isn't. This live presentation
strategies to help you to start seeing yourself as the intelligent and
competent person you really are. handbook
/ ebook / CD program from
> More titles:
growth : books---impostor syndrome 2 :
quotes articles books....
perfectionism 3 :
quotes articles books......self-esteem / self concept : sites articles books
articles books.....self-limiting resources : articles books.....
~ ~ ~
page : Talent
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