I like to think that I have always been a writer. I loved the daily journals that were required in third grade and excelled at creative writing in middle school. Junior year, I tried bringing back the high school newspaper and found solace in writing short snippets about my classmates. Throughout those years, I never felt like I wasn’t good enough – I simply wrote as an outlet. It wasn’t until I enrolled in a creative writing course in undergrad that I questioned why I had spent so much time and energy into writing. My classmates emitted creative writing vibes from their clothing attire to the way they could string together words to describe a simple object. I was none of those things. My writing didn’t impress the instructor. The self-doubt slowly started to creep in. Why was I enrolled in this course, wasting time and money for something that I obviously was not good at?
Shortly after the course ended, I limited my writing to research papers and Facebook posts. If I couldn’t impress a college professor and thirteen of my peers, why continue to try?
When the blogging space gained transaction a few years ago, my curiosity was peaked. I read a few posts on how to get started, but the limiting belief was still there. It wasn’t until my third semester of graduate school that I decided to pull the trigger and create this blog. What started out as a visual resume for job applications quickly morphed into a comparison trap. I registered a domain on Squarespace, paid for an email subscription, and signed-up for a Pinterest course because if I wanted to make it, I had to go big or go home. I spent hours trying to figure out how to generate income from my space on the internet because writing day after day to only spend money was draining my wallet and my motivation to continue writing. Eventually, I gave up and stopped logging in; lack of page views and interaction with my posts fueled my discouragement.
And underneath it all, the evidence was mounting for the prosecutorial argument stating I wasn’t a good enough writer.
I recently started seeing a therapist after coming to the realization that after trying for several months to cope with anxiety and depression, I needed professional help. I left the first session with a worksheet on limiting beliefs: top pick for me, I’m not good enough. I see this limiting belief in many areas of my life: personal relationship, hobbies, career, health-related goals … the list goes on and on. Yet, after stating these things out loud to someone else and bringing them into the light, I have been curious to uncover why and/or where these limiting beliefs have originated from.
For my writing, it comes from comparison.
For my relationship, it stems from a lack of self-love.
For my friendships, it comes from FOMO on social media.
When limiting beliefs creep in, we shut down and listen to the voice because there has to be some truth to it, right? Wrong.
Today, I’m challenging you to oppose the voice. Fight back and continue to do what it is that brings you joy.
Continue showing up to spin. Continue hosting your small group. Continue cooking new recipes.
I will leave you with this exercise - for every limiting belief that you may have, oppose it with three truths.
Here is mine as an example:
I’m not a good enough writer.
I scored high marks on numerous papers throughout my college education.
My friends and family shared with me how much they enjoyed reading my blog when I first started.
I enjoy using writing as a creative outlet.
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I will continue to show up in my rented space on the internet at least once a week from here on out; fighting back the voice that says I’m not a good enough writer.