Season 2 – epiBLOG 16:
OCTOBER THEME – “FEAR”
Months ago in a blog post entitled “Are You Enough to Start Over?” I discussed the idea that you can reinvent yourself based on your passions and your drive. Today, the topic that I want to discuss is the idea of the fear of feeling like you’re NOT enough to actually have what it is that you’re seeking.
How many artists feel that way regularly? Based on observation, my fiancé says that it seems like artists are constantly trying to fill a void – some sort of emptiness within us that never truly gets satisfied because of the constant amount of rejection, criticism, and self-doubt that tends to have to be endured, not to mention, the need for validation itself. I can easily see that. It’s probably true for anyone in the pursuit of a worthwhile dream or goal. I’m sure it’s not unique to the creative types.
However, my fiancé did make a relevant point. Obviously, artists write, draw, sculpt, sing, play an instrument, and design because it fulfills them. It’s satisfying and brings about a feeling of accomplishment when a piece of talent is expressed into a specific form. That expression could be a script, a song, or a painting. After a while, the need to be validated by others through praise or through others financially supporting the art becomes the next level of satisfaction. This is not true for every artists, as some are simply happy to just create. Nevertheless, for those hungry enough to desire making a living by creating their art, they are constantly looking outside of themselves for the validation to fill the internal hole. The problem with doing this is that you have no way of controlling others; you can only control yourself. In other words, look from within in order to fill the emptiness on the inside of you.
What I’m working through learning is that I have to be enough for myself. The idea that you are only good at what you do if another person says that you are, has got to stop. You have to believe and know that you’re a brilliant screenwriter, that you have a keen eye for sculpting that perfect masterpiece, that you have ears that tune into the beauty that is your music. Once you KNOW that you are everything that you need to be and that you’re operating from your defined purpose in life, that’s when you will realize that you are enough. Once you live into that realization, others will praise you and pay you for your skills, talents, and efforts.
Despite all of the logic behind what you need to do to move forward, fear of not being enough is very real. Having to constantly validate yourself in the face of adversity, in the depths of despair, and within the quicksand of hopelessness is not easy. What I do to alleviate these issues on a regular basis is read self-help books, use affirmations, listen to motivational CD’s in my car, surround myself with evidence of my past accomplishments (awards, trophies) in my office, and refocus myself constantly. It’s not always easy because disappointments, delays, and rejections are part of the process in moving forward. So, I can do all of those things and still feel empty on the inside if I happen to not have a good day. But doing those things reminds me that the empty feeling is temporary. It keeps me from going to the dark side or in some sort of downward tailspin that I can’t come back from.
Today’s LESSON is to acknowledge your fears and doubts, but move forward with your goals and dreams anyway.
FUN ASSIGNMENT: Add ONE (1) activity towards your daily routine in both the morning and evening (or even in the middle of the day) that helps to refocus your mind on your goals. For example, it might be adding affirmations to your daily routine. If you choose to do this, make sure you are stating your affirmation in the present tense, adding an action word, and a positive feeling to the affirmation(s). For example, “I am excitedly making $100,000 a year as an accomplished painter.” (Jack Canfield taught me how to create strong affirmations). You can also choose to read from a self-help book for a specific amount of time each day, listen to self-help audios, meditate, etc. Whatever you do, just choose an activity that you are willing to do consistently that helps to keep you focused on your goals.