That’s the struggle, isn’t it? It is one struggle that almost all of us deal with every now and then. You can not tell me that is not true. I know that I, personally, deal with it. Why? I wish that I had a good answer to that question. There are times when I will sit in my chair, wherever that may be, and think about all the things that I could be doing; things that I want to be doing, but then I start countering those thoughts with statements that criticize my own abilities. Sometimes it has nothing to do with my own abilities but the lack of equipment that would be necessary to make my work better. It’s amazing how much and how often that happens. I don’t have an explanation for it, nor do I have any real remedies for that.
For instance, I do love to take pictures, but I certainly don’t do it nearly as much as I once did. Why is that? The answer is surprisingly simple; “I can’t take pictures that are clearly focused.”
What in the hell does that mean? I tell myself that I need a better camera to take better pictures. Better in this instance usually means much more expensive than what I have. That ends up leading into doubting whether that would help and how I wouldn’t be able to afford to buy that camera, which, in turn, leads me into asking myself if it would be financially responsible for me to spend $2000 or more on a hobby. While the end result is the best option, I can’t help but think that I should have asked that question first and then worked on bettering my techniques and learning how to use my own camera better. It all started with me saying “I can’t.”
That is a phrase that I have used quite often. It is one that I have overused to an extent that it’s an ingrained part of my psyche. My inner critic often tells me that I’m not good enough to do something. It puts me down to a point where I believe it. The worst part of all that is that there is a part of me that knows that inner critic is wrong, but “I can’t” believe that part.
It even seeped into my writing oh so many years ago. Writing used to be a way for me to express myself; to release that inner creativity that wanted to be released, but that inner critic would rear its ugly head. It would tell me that what I was writing sounded incredibly juvenile; that nobody would ever be interested in reading something like that. It would tell me that my writing style would never be published. It would tell me that I didn’t know enough about the subject so what I wrote would never really make any sense.
I listened to that critic, and I stopped writing. I blamed it on writer’s block. I blamed it on my lack of creativity. I blamed everything else other than that critic. It’s taken me a long to time to fully realize that was the case. Am I writing now? No, but that’s a different story altogether. Yes, I am writing these articles from time to time, but this is something that I see as being different from what I used to write. Never mind all of that, though.
It even seeps into my interactions with the opposite sex. It makes me think that I’m not cut out for a relationship with anyone and that it will end up being a single life for me. That’s not such a bad thing all things considered. There certainly is a lot more freedom that way! But, sometimes you just want and need the companionship of an adult. Don’t get me wrong. I love having my son around, but sometimes I just want an adult near me that I can talk to; preferably about topics that I’m actually interested in.
So, what happens in those interactions?
“I’m not good enough for her.”
“She deserves so much better than me.”
Those two lines end up spending so much time in my thoughts that I end up acting upon them and pushing someone away or not even approaching someone at all. I’ve always called myself shy and quiet, but I don’t really think that’s entirely true. It has always taken someone who I connected with to gain and keep my desire to stay in their company. It is something that I know that I’ve done for as long as I can remember. I’ve ended relationships for fear of hurting someone down the road. I’ve avoided even seeking a relationship with someone because I didn’t think that I was her type or that I wasn’t good enough for her.
I can tell someone “It’s me, not you,” and be completely honest about that. It would be something that I believed was true.
It is tough living with low self-confidence that you can’t even give a reason for. It is difficult working through things when self-doubt is always there sitting on your shoulder and telling you that you shouldn’t even try.
So I struggle. Every day. I think about everything. I over think about certain things. I doubt whether I can actually accomplish something.
And I have no idea how to repair myself to a point where that stops. I can read articles such as this, but in the end, that’s all I’m doing. It will give me an idea of how to go about fixing my own little problems, but I never seem to be able to make it fully work. It is crushing at times. I’m certain that some of you totally understand, but I also know that some of you will question any and/or all of what I’ve typed here.
Compliments don’t seem to help. I tend to brush them off and continue on my way. I have never really accepted them. I might smile and say thank you but believing your words is not something that comes easily to me. Encouragement does not seem to do the trick either. It may work momentarily, but the doubt just creeps right back in. It doesn’t take long for that to happen.
I really do not have any kind of explanation for it. It’s just me.