Sometimes we just need that extra validation. Whether it's someone telling you if you are on the right track, or if you might be wasting your time, at least then you have some resolution. Hearing we're on the right track is often the kick in the butt we need to keep going. We all need that cheerleader every now and again. And conversely, if we are way off base, we can move onto something else and not have to worry or wonder.
2.) Talk to a critique partner or trusted friend
This feeds directly from number one, but even just talking about a plot can be enough to shut up the doubt gremlins. A good brainstorming session with someone who isn't so close to your project, can often give you options. And once you have options you can can squash that little monster with excitement to keep going on a project. Then suddenly a lot of the doubt falls into the background for a while.
In addition, talking to other writers and critique partners can help us see we aren't alone. There's comfort in numbers and in being able to hash out feelings with someone else who feels the exact same way. Writing is horribly lonely sometimes and we forget we aren't the only ones going through this stuff. So find a friend and commiserate together.
A lot of times we can doubt our own knowledge on a topic. Research can help us confirm what we know and also further bolster our stories with new information. When we doubt our qualifications, research can often help tell us we really do know what we are talking about. Or if for some reason we are on the wrong track, it can help set us back on the right one and re-energize our writing. Show that doubt gremlin you know your stuff.
Sometimes we just need a break. Don't let the little gremlin win, but take some time off to regroup. Then you can come back rejuvenated and ready to rock that manuscript. In war sometimes you have to give up a battle to win the war, and taking a break is exactly that. It's taking enough time to come up with a new plan and conquer with renewed fervor.
Sometimes changing focus is enough to shut up the monster inside our minds. You aren't taking a break, you are just temporarily refocusing your efforts on something else. Something new and shiny just might be what your brain needs to tell those gremlins to go shove it.
This one is really tough. Unfortunately though, that voice is sometimes right. In our gut we know something isn't working, whether that be plot, characters, timing or we just aren't there skill wise yet. That doesn't mean you are giving into the doubt gremlin, but it does mean that you are tackling it in another way with a new strategy.
The doubt gremlin is evil and debilitating. We've all been there. But the best way to conquer that obnoxious voice in our minds is to keep going. So find what ever it takes to do that and run into it head first. Show that doubt gremlin you aren't going to listen to it, and you will prevail!