Lately, I have been revisiting my vomit journal —oh, by the way, I have a vomit journal— to reevaluate the thoughts that were plaguing my psyche and kept me awake at night. The purpose of this journal is to have a log of my mindset I can revisit and compare with how I feel at the moment. That way, I can tell if things are improving or maybe I am getting more lost.
I tend to do this every four to six months to see my progress in terms of career and mental well-being. Additionally, it is an excellent source of content ideas and exciting discussions. Maybe consider starting your own, but I digress.
The point is that in my journey of revisiting my log of stream of consciousness, something jumped to my attention. I wrote extensively and in detail about how terrified I was at the uncertainty of starting a new venture and doing something I knew I was not good at for a living.
I will share some of it with you today because maybe it can help some of you understand that we all harbor the same doubts and fears. After all, what’s within me, is also within you.
I'm scared. I am terrified by the sheer amount of work and preparation ahead of me. I'm struggling to stay motivated and productive enough to produce the results I feel I need to reach our competitors. I didn't really comprehend the depth and complexities of the knowledge needed to succeed in the blogging and podcasting sphere. There is so much detail, so much effort, fine-tuning, and polish needed that I can't even comprehend how to tackle it, how to start. It constantly feels like I am just an amateur 30 steps behind everyone else. And there are so many others out there doing it better. They have it figured out already. It feels so demoralizing and defeating to think about the road ahead. Why am I doing this? Why did we start the blog? What is it that we wanted to make? I feel that I have something to offer. But nobody is listening. I want to be proud of something I make. I want to provide. I want to thrive. Moving forward is so draining and daring. Every step, every progress feels insufficient. Every post I write feels shallow and subpar. Every attempt at crossing the line feels superficial and short. I can't connect with people until I figure this out. What 'this' is, I don't know. But I have to do something. I have to do. I'm tired of being insufficient. I'm done with being not enough. I don't have any answers. I don't have the skills. I don't know what to do. But I have to do something. I am tired of this pain of incongruency. I want to believe something about myself, but my narrative won't support it. My inner dialog might be supportive, but I know there is nothing that supports my belief that I can pull this through. I don't know what to do. I don't know what to do. I don't know what to do.
Bear in mind that this is something I wrote about six months ago. And even though we started our venture last year, we started taking it more seriously at the start of this year.
Thankfully, I have been feeling much better about our capacity to overcome this obstacle and grow towards our goals. But this was a severe struggle that I faced every time I sat to write or produce something. All these thoughts would resurface and make me feel inadequate for the task at hand.
Do Better by Doing
If you are wondering what helped me push through and get myself out of that mindset, well, it’s simple. I decided to follow my own advice and do. So I focused on the things I am not good at and just kept doing them; Regardless of how I felt.
Doing the difficult things that didn’t come naturally to me helped me work on my flaws and get better. I know it might be self-evident to most of you, but we are all guilty of running away from a challenge. We are rarely rational when dealing with our insecurities and self-worth.
Moreover, I wanted to believe something about myself, but my narrative couldn’t support it. I felt a strong incongruency in my identity. I thought myself to be fun, intelligent, and resourceful, but the voices in my head, the story that I had adopted to describe who I am, didn’t have any evidence of such traits.
This mindset, of course, is the consequence of decades of internalizing the wrong messages and my misconceptions about my worth and recently have learned to disregard.
So, if you are struggling with doing what you love because you feel like you’re just not good at it or your voice has no value, don’t disengage. Instead, lean into it. Ignore the inner criticism and focus on doing more of what you suck at often. Ultimately, getting good at it is what will shift that perception.
Also, if you have a vomit journal, let us know! We want to hear more from you.
This newsletter was born out of some conversations Wendy and I have had recently about self-worth and praise. I plan on expanding on this topic in subsequent content.
Stay safe; stay well.