Sunday, January 29, 2017

Moving away from the bully

I rose to the challenge and submitted my short story 40 minutes before the deadline. 
What happened next as I was strolling down the street to get to a yoga class, I noticed the little voice in my head judging me for my style of writing, for some of the informal wording that I deliberately decided to keep, and for borrowing from a few fairy-tales that I had seen as a little girl. Additionally, the animal characters of my story resembled real life people and real life situations - implicitly, of course!
Who says they wrote a fairy-tale about a swan and a duck and it was largely based on a true story??

So I was walking, judging my art and judging myself in the reflection of passing shops, and then it hit me. I never ever give myself a frickin' credit for anything! I give points to other people for minor things they do, but I'm constantly nagging myself. The voice in my head is one big bully. Not every time I am so aware of the mind-chatter, not every time I catch it by its claws and kick its butt - sometimes it's running in the background like a broken record and I play along. No wonder it makes me feel bad and it makes me do stupid stuff. Like saying "No" when I mean "Yes", keeping to myself, and that glass of wine? It's usually unwanted, but I keep hoping its effects would shut the voice up.

Not really. It is being mindful of the voice what shuts it up eventually.
The moment I uncovered the bully, I flooded myself with pride for what I did. I hadn't entered the writing challenge expecting anything but meeting the deadline with a story complying with all the criteria. I did it.
In fact, many people would be proud of themselves if they came up with 2500 words which together make sense and get the imagination going.

Comparing ourselves to the 'Ideal' or 'Idealized version' of success, will only make us suffer.
There is no nobleness in saying that what we do is not as good as - .

If I compare myself to published writers, older writers, or super talented writers and native speakers, well, I am really not quite there. But if I compare my current writing to the one I did 10 years ago, and my English to the one I spoke 10 years ago, I progressed a BIG time.

Do not let the judging voice at the back of your head spoil your little victories. 
They can be any size you think of, they can impact no one, they can be forgotten in a little while, but they were still little challenges you rose up to - and that counts tenfold.
Be brave enough to pat yourself on the back and move away from the bully. We don't need that voice, which brings no feelings of satisfaction. It doesn't cost anything to say "Well done, I did it."
What if I told myself that I was amazing?! Not the things that I created, but ME!

I felt so energized that I dropped my bag off at the studio, and I run out to the riverwalk for some proper cardio session. Possibly my best jog in a long, long time.

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