Hey, Freelance Writer: It’s Time to Tune Out Your Inner Critic

Brad Bartlett
4 min readDec 13, 2023

Don’t let misguided self-judgment distort your writing confidence and creativity.

How often does that familiar inner voice pipe up just as you find your creative groove as a freelance writer? You know the one — effortlessly rattling off your deepest insecurities masked as constructive criticism:

“This draft is a disjointed mess…”

“Your concepts fall flat…”

“No one needs another blog on this overdone topic.”

Like countless freelance writers, I became intimately acquainted with my inner critic’s favorite means of sabotaging my progress. Its relentless commentary strained my relationship with writing itself.

After repeatedly losing days stuck in editing cycles or flinching at publishing perfectly good pieces, I realized such excessive self-judgment wore down my craft and confidence.

Yet tuning out the inner voice continues to be difficult. Its constant drone sits in the back of my mind like radio static.

It was only after researching the psychological source of extreme inner critics that I uncovered why reasoned arguments failed to dismiss them.

These voices originate from childhood feedback loops rather than objective discernment — so putting an end to them requires targeted emotional rewiring, not just logic.

Sound fancy and complicated? Let’s look a bit closer:

Where Does Your Inner Critic Come From?

Imagine your inner critic as an overzealous editor who embedded itself in your psyche back when you first started sharing creative work.

Maybe an authority figure like a parent, teacher or mentor delivered feedback so harshly that your young brain assumed their critical perspective must signify what “good” work looks like.

But creative expression isn’t one-size-fits all, nor is constructive criticism always communicated appropriately to a sensitive child.

Still, those cutting words — however unintentional — can still drop explosives into the foundations of your confidence.

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Brad Bartlett

Professional Freelance Copywriter. (www.bradleebartlett.co) Musings on #freelancing, #productivity, #self-development, and more!