Wavering in your commitment to write and the scary voice in your head

Written by: Franque Michele

If you have a desire to stay committed to a large project. Do it. I am learning in my life that commitment brings immense rewards. But, what do you do when your commitment wavers? In my previous post (link) I talked about my choice to stop teaching and my choice to make a commitment to my creative projects.  The post is positive, it expresses a Franque that is ready to take on the world. Let me tell you, it doesn’t feel like that everyday.  Sometimes, I ask, how am I going to make it?  I ask, am I making the right decision? Then I find myself online looking at jobs and sending in job applications.  The last time I did this was a few days ago, and something came up.  I began to see these periodic lapses for what they were.  

These are the voice of the scary bitch in my head.  She is trying to set me up for failure and if I feed her, she’ll win.  I’m not in any dire financial situation if I sit and finish this book. I’ve got a steady part time job that pays the bills. I’ll learn financial discipline and I’ll see where my career can take me. I have absolutely nothing to gain by picking up a full time job that may or may not allow me enough time to write. This scared bitch, is distracting me from my goals and she’s keeping me up at night.  I hate this bitch.

But this voice is normal.  One of the only things that keeps me in the game are the stories of creatives brave enough to share what their struggles looked like before they struck it big.  One in particular is Amy Poehler.  She wrote Yes Please a couple of years back and I devoured it last year. It has a section where she discusses her “demon voice” and the first time I read through it, I was floored, I took notes, I was freed. It’s not just me, and it can get better?!?

So what does this demon voice sound like?  Amy describes . . .

“You are six or twelve or fifteen and you look in the mirror and you hear a voice so awful and mean that it takes your breath away. It tells you that you are fat and ugly. The voice that talks badly to you is a demon voice. And the scary part is the demon is your voice.

And what does kicking this weak demon bitch’s rear end look like? Amy says

“to get over the demon, remember your currency, out loud, you can yell at it, defend yourself, remember your currency and be too busy to listen.  Enjoy life.”

Damn, I’ve got to remember my currency. I’ve got to remember what I bring to the table, what makes me love being creative and why I am making all of these sacrifices. I’m so grateful for Amy’s courage in sharing so many personal and vulnerable sides of herself.  I highly recommend that anyone pursuing a creative career read it.  I’m energized now to resume my busy schedule, too busy to listen to that nasty voice in my head.  

In the words of a wise sage that I know (in the form of my younger brother) “If you are going to do it, go HAM – Hard as a Motherf@%*#5er” – Eric Bains

Check out Franque and her stuff at franquebains.com

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