woman writing in a notebook

4 Ways to Build Confidence as a Poet

Creative pursuits—whether at a hobby or career level—inevitably come with challenges, and poetry is no exception. From rejection to writer’s block, building confidence as a poet can often feel like an uphill battle. To aid you in your writing journey, we’ve created this list for you to reference during moments of self-doubt.


Recite positive affirmations


Affirmations are encouraging statements often repeated to develop more positive mindsets. Build your confidence by reciting your own positive affirmations each day. Take this activity a step further by creating a physical journal solely for this practice. Although you could easily write in a Notes app or Word document, putting pen to paper makes these statements feel more tangible. 


You can also seamlessly incorporate this into your writing routine. Stating affirmations before and after you write a poem can allow you to feel more positive about your work in a simple but effective way. As you craft these empowering statements, be sure to employ bold, direct wording. Consider using these affirmations as a starting point:


“I am a talented poet who creates work readers emotionally connect to.” 

“I’m proud of my ability to creatively paint a scene using words.” 

“I love writing poetry—nothing will stop me from pursuing my passions and developing my craft.”


Revisit work you’re proud of


When you’re stuck in a writing rut and feeling discouraged, revisit work you’re proud of. Doing so can remind you of your unique, powerful voice while renewing your faith and confidence in your talent. Additionally, previously written poems might spark inspiration. To remain organized, curate an easily accessible folder of specific pieces to re-read. 


Seek encouragement from friends and family


Insecurities can often cloud our perceptions of ourselves. When you’re experiencing self-doubt, seek encouragement from friends and family. Loved ones can remind you of your successes and how your poetry has positively impacted them. You might even feel inspired to record these supportive words in your journal, providing you with a confidence boost.


Accept that any craft is a learning process


Any craft comes with a learning process, involving emotional highs and lows. As you develop your writing skills, you might wish to expand your poetry craft even further. If you choose to submit your poetry for publication or apply to join a creative writing program, for example, you might receive disappointing replies, which can impact your confidence as a poet. 


Consider re-framing rejection as a chance to make space for the right opportunity. Throughout this process, also remind yourself that your craft is not tied to your inherent worth as a person. These tips can soften the blow of a negative response while helping you view setbacks as a way to grow. Not only can this practice support your confidence as a poet, it can also be applied more broadly to challenging moments in your life.


Ask yourself: What did I learn from this experience? In what ways can I apply these lessons going forward? How has this rejection revealed elements of my writing I should continue working on?


Hopefully, these tips inspire you to intentionally build your confidence as a poet. You’ve got this!