Removing Myself As An Obstacle

I have 2 advanced degrees, neither of which are in writing, English, or any type of journalism. Tonight is the first night that I am taking time away from my family to devote a few hours solely to myself and writing.

I am terrified. Who do I think I am? I am qualified to count people’s money. I’m not qualified to write words on a page and think that it can be “something”.

Yet I’m here. I’ve wanted to write since I was a kid. It’s hard to admit it but I would try to write stories since I was 10. I would dream of publishing a novel. Instead of actually trying to follow my dreams, however, I followed the practical road. I became an accountant. And that was after rejecting dentistry (science and I did not get along). Writing was never my first choice as a career in real life.

For the last 5 years, I have been a stay at home mom who has occasionally written in her blog. I would be focused for a few weeks and lose it after when real life overtook my side aspirations. Now, I’ve been given a chance at consistency.

And I am terrified. I was having crazy anxiety just driving to the coffee shop right now. I feel like a fraud. I’m not a professional writer. So why do I get to step away from my family in order to sit and put words on the screen for a few hours? Is it even realistic goal? Does it have to be? Can’t I just dream big?

I don’t know if this will even come to anything. All I know is writing has always been good for my soul. So here I am.

Encourage, Not Discourage

I have a friend who posted about working out on Facebook. In her comments section, there were a bunch of comments about how it was funny that she started working out or that they were waiting for her to give up.

Seriously???

Someone is trying to do something good for their own life and whether it will work out or not, why are people discouraging her? Why would you tease someone who was trying to make a positive change in their life?

I don’t know about everyone else but within the Indian community, you do see this a lot. Instead of helping people out, we tend to put people down. We don’t always support others in their dreams or goals. Even when we do seem to support someone, it’s not always real. We end up talking negatively about them behind their backs.

Why do we feel the need to put someone else down? Why is it so hard to just believe in them? Does it matter if we end up being right or wrong?

Just say that someone does quit or doesn’t achieve their goals. Does it make a difference to us? My guess is what that person will remember is your belief in them, in your support for them.

There’s no reason to discourage someone (even if you mean it jokingly). It could really hurt their feelings or prevent them from following their dreams. Even though we think that our words would not have that effect, they might.

Support. Believe. Encourage.

 

Oh NO, I’m caring!

As I was writing today’s post, I realized that I needed to start a new one. The reason for that was that I was thinking too much about what if I offend someone or they don’t agree with me. So now, somehow, I am caring what people think about what I write. The purpose of this blog was to bring up issues and thoughts that most people won’t say out loud. I am not supposed to censor myself. But here I am, doing exactly that. So I decided to start over and to write about why should I care what people think.

I want people to enjoy what I’m writing about as well as really start thinking about issues that are brought up in these posts. I forget that it’s not all about how many views you have or how many likes you have just because the numbers make me feel validated. It makes me feel like I’m doing something useful in this world when I see a lot of people liking my posts.

Here’s the thing. I’m not doing this for the numbers. That wasn’t my original goal. I’m doing this to talk about things that hadn’t been talked about. And that includes censoring myself for no reason. That includes most of us censoring ourselves because we think someone might not like us or might criticize us.

Why do we worry so much about this? Yes, we should be discerning and tactful in what we say but at the same time, why are we so worried that someone is immediately going to dislike us because we say what is on our minds? Most likely than not, that person is worrying about what he/she will say rather than what you’re going to say.

We all want to be liked, accepted. There are people that will come into your life and will like you and there are people that will not. This happens to everyone. So maybe we should just be confident in what we are trying to say and say it. We know that our intentions are not bad. If someone takes something the wrong way, they can discuss with you and listen to what you actually meant or they can dislike you for it and walk out of your life. At the end of the day, if someone does not like you for something you said (true or not), it is their problem. As long as you are not intentionally being rude or mean, saying what you’re thinking should not be a huge deal. You are allowed to express yourself.

I have learned over the years that if you worry too much about what you say, things get left unsaid. Sometimes, everyone is thinking it and no one wants to say it. Sometimes, it’s that one thought that crosses one mind that can solve a problem or help someone. Sometimes, it might be that one thing that gets said that prevents a bigger problem from happening. I don’t want to make this sound like you’re saving the world by saying what you’re thinking but I still want you to believe that it might. And it might. All of the great people who have fought for freedom or for change are people who didn’t care what others thought and said what needed to be said.

So believe in yourself. Believe in what you have to say. Believe that your words count.