Carrie Maldonado – Author

I write books and blogs to inspire, encourage, and entertain!

Writers Write!

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It’s pretty common in the American culture to define ourselves by our vocation, and by that I mean by what we get paid to do.  It’s almost like if you don’t earn money doing it, it doesn’t ‘count’.  I’ve seen a tide shifting here, but mostly only as it relates to stay at home parents. Both my husband and I have by turns stayed home, not earned a paycheck, and devoted our time to raising our daughter and tending the (endless) household tasks.  I was a little surprised, and disappointed, at how we both felt like we weren’t earning our keep unless we were busy doing ‘stuff’ around the clock, because we weren’t earning a paycheck.  We both realized in our heads that we were doing a huge, and very difficult job, but it didn’t feel like it because we weren’t getting paid for it.  This is a real struggle for a lot of people and I’ve seen it in myself in my writing and coaching.

What I’ve realized for me is that I’m reluctant to define myself as a writer and as a coach because that’s not how I earn my paycheck yet.  If people ask what I do, I say “Oh, I’m an HR Director, and I’m kind of a writer…but I haven’t been published yet.”  As though I need to reassure my audience that I am not trying to deceive them about my writerly-ness.  And yes, I know that this is sad, and untrue!  I’ve coached others out of this false belief, but it astounds me how persistent it is.  When we moved to Washington last year, I met a woman through a friend of a friend and thought she seemed really cool so I friended her on Facebook.  There I found out she was a successful, published author.  I hadn’t read any of her work so I binge read all of her books and loved them!  I had no trouble telling her how wonderful her writing was but there was no WAY I was going to tell her that I write too.  Everyone who knew about the situation asked me why.  There were a few reasons but mostly I was embarrassed that I hadn’t been published.  I felt disqualified to tell her I was a writer because no one had yet deemed my writing publishable.  I went through this when I was getting my coaching certification as well.  I would NOT call myself a coach until my own coach realized this and called me on it.  She said if I coach others I am a coach.  Period.

Obviously much of this is my own stuff, still getting a measure of validation through others despite years of work on this, but I don’t think I’m alone in it.  So my challenge to myself this week, and to you too if this resonates, is to stop qualifying.  If you are writing, you’re a writer!  This week if someone asks me what I do I will say “I’m a writer!  (And I also Direct anWriters write macleod writer who didn't quit HR Department)”


Author: Carrie Maldonado

Carrie Maldonado, is an organizational development consultant, author, and speaker. Carrie's eclectic mix of professional interests include writing, speaking, coaching, and consulting on topics ranging from organizational behavior management to spiritual transformation in and out of the workplace. Carrie lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with her patient and long-suffering husband and their three children.

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