Hey there folks!
In my time with this wonderful experiment of mine I have been rather open about my own struggles with depression, anxiety and loneliness. I am not one to really try and harp on these topics or use them as crutches, but I do have my own mess to deal with and that is one of the key reasons I have issues committing to this writing on a regular basis. I really do not believe I am all that different from other people in this regard, but my inspiration and motivation wax and wane leading to outbursts of creativity and droughts of despair.
My most recent drought of writing has found me entrenched in a job that provides an adequate living for me, but offers little real satisfaction. While I feel that what I am currently doing is more beneficial to society than making a pizza, it is also not a duty that would be greatly missed if it were not present.
I have been in the position for a little more than a year now and I now find myself in a much more secure place. When I took the position I was coming out of a pretty terrible year that saw a great many changes brought into my life. In my entry titles The Deep End, I discussed my need to start swimming out into the deep end of pool as it were. Finding myself in a new kind of working environment and growing accustomed to my life alone, I felt a strong desire to acclimate myself to my surroundings and grow into my new skin.
While my writing had helped to get me through a very difficult time it became a casualty of the life it had empowered me to build. Not only did the new time constraint of having a job get introduced into my schedule but my old companion doubt paid a visit. As with every other visit I have had with doubt I did not recognize him at first. In retrospect this seems rather strange but that is always the way with doubt. No matter how much time we have spent together over the years I almost never recognize him on first sight. Even when he starts to focus in on the things I am most proud of I don’t catch on.
Soon after introductions the rationalizations start coming as I allow him to convince me that I don’t have time for the gym and I can sit down and write later. I mean I have been doing so good lately don’t I deserve a break?
Eventually I start to recognize doubt for the antagonist that he is, but by this time he already has his hooks in me. As I start to fight against the apathy and lethargy the real attacks begin. “Who are you writing that shit for anyway? Seems like an exercise in vanity to me, who the hell do you think you are?”
At this point doubt has turned my own confidence against me. I think I know so damn much that I believe myself when I start thinking that no one gives a shit about me. I convince myself that my writing is a frivolous, egotistical endeavor because in the end I am just a worthless impostor, pretending to something I can never be.
Like so many other things in life this is part of a cycle that I have learned to identify , even if only in hind sight. However, after this most recent round about I found myself reflecting on the irony of believing myself to be worthless. If I really don’t know what the hell I am talking about then why should I listen to myself when I say that I am worthless.
The times in my life when I need to be confident in my thoughts and decisions too often coincide with the times I am paralyzed with doubt and fear; meanwhile, the times I should really ignore the swill coming out of my head I become supremely confident in thoughts I should not even give the time of day.
I have no idea if I will ever be able to escape this nagging claws of doubt, but I know for damn sure that when I notice his insidious influence upon me I need to draw strength from somewhere outside myself and find inspiration in the words of others so that I can remember what my voice sounds like again.