Mental Health Monday–Self-Evaluation

Part of mental health treatment includes identifying goals and monitoring progress. Having objective measures helps. Why? Well, it’s hard to see how far you’ve come when you’re neck deep in the mire of day to day life. It’s also hard to see improvements when your eye is focused solely on whittling away at the negatives. I dare say it gets demoralizing and exhausting after a while.

So what’s the solution? Stepping back to look at the big picture. Assess how far you’ve come. Compare where you’re at now to where you were “before.”

Writers need to do this too. (I’ve recently been reminded of this, hence the post.) I stew and stew over how much work I have left in front of me to improve my writing. It makes me tired…and whiney (sorry, crit partners, you are the poor saps super supportive peeps who get to listen to me grumble).

What better way to celebrate progress than through a blogfest? Yup, that’s right, a blogfest. Check out Christine H’s blog, The Writer’s Hole, for deets on an upcoming blogfest/contest comparing “before” and “after” writing skills. Read her tale of working on a WIP for FOUR years and how she managed to stick with it.

On Saturday, February 5th, I’m ponying up and sharing some “old” writings (pre-“training”) and sharing lines from a more recent WIP to show the difference.

Who’s with me? Go on then, sign up! *nudge nudge*


Don’t forget to check out Lovely Lydia’s post on Medical Monday.

Be sure to pop on over to Sarah’s blog for her super awesome psychology post!

14 comments on “Mental Health Monday–Self-Evaluation

  1. Paul Greci says:

    Yes, self-evaluation is so much part of the writing process and journey. Really, it’s part of most processes. For me, the key is to try do it in a mindful way b/c it’s so easy for “self-evaluator” to slip into “self-critic.” Thanks!

  2. Tracy says:

    That is probably one of the best lead-ins I’ve ever seen for a blogfest!! lol

    4 years on the same project? Goodness that is some serious dedication.

  3. Sarah says:

    Lovely, Laura. We all need to do this more often. It helps when we have honest friends and crit partners to assist us.

  4. I’m off to locate my big picture … 😉

  5. Lydia K says:

    Self evaluation is so important! Great post Laura. As always, I am too chicken to post my own stuff. Need to work on that!

  6. Christine Fonseca says:

    Dude…you so don’t want to read my old stuff. But yes, self evaluation and self monitoring are so important – in everything

  7. lbdiamond says:

    Paul–thanks for stopping by! I like how you point out the difference between self-evaluator and self-critic–two very different connotations!

    Tracy–4 years IS a long time! I’ve been working on my YA Dystopian for a year (since the idea first hit), but it feels like much longer, LOL!

    Sarah–thank. CP’s certainly make all the difference!


    Lydia–Your work is AWESOME! Post it bravely! 😉

    Christine–LOL! I’m sure it’s not as bad as you think. 😉

  8. I’m scared to look back. My editor taught me even more than any of my crit partners could and whoa, it would be very scary.

  9. Self evaluation. Excellent post, Laura. You totally rock. I grumble too. And I’m a whiney baby. Crit partner should slap my baby hiney sometimes. But she puts up with my junk.

    I’m thinking about joining you. But OH THE EMBARRASSMENT! 😉 Cuz I thought I could write. I thought I was the best dang writer on the planet. Uh-huh. Now I KNOW the ugly truth about those days.

  10. Cinette says:

    Once I moved from pen and paper to computer, I never saved any of my old stuff, and the stuff on paper (pre-training) will NEVER see the light of day! I love you guys too much to subject you to such sappy drivel;0)

  11. Talli Roland says:

    Old stuff…. *shudder*

    I think I tend to over-self-evaluate! 🙂

  12. Fantastic idea to have objective measures. Sometimes it’s too easy to concentrate on what still remains to be done!


  13. Christine H says:

    Thanks so much for the post about the blogfest! I really appreciate it. I will be back to scope out your blog more later. Really cool stuff, psychology.

    I do feel better about the whole “four year” thing after going to the Philadelphia Area Writer’s Meetup yesterday. Several people pointed out famous authors who took 5, 9, or more years to finish their work. A huge part of it is world-building. I can’t do anything halfway so I had to create not just a culture, and a history, but even a language. Just to be sure I wasn’t copying anyone else.


    Have a great week! Thanks again so much!

  14. Signed up. Mostly for the potential to win chocolate, even at the risk of public embarrassment. 🙂

    Though, I like to think about it as an educational opportunity.

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