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Self Doubt

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Although I’ve not had much time for visiting blogs lately, every once in a while I stumble upon a new one (new to me) that really grabs me.  The other day I found Schmutzie.

This lady is talented.  Seriously.  But I didn’t want to write about her site in general.  There is a specific post from last year, with a video of her speaking at a TEDx event.

Here’s the link to the post with the video.  It’s nineteen minutes long, and worth it.  It’s about self doubt and all the things that stand in your way of being and doing what makes you happy.

She talks about working in a beige cubicle and feeling more and more weighted down every single day by feeling like she wasn’t happy or fulfilled.  She wasn’t a person who DID THINGS.  It really resonated with me because, well, take a look:

My second home.

My second home.

My beige cubicle floats atop a sea of beige carpet, enveloped by a horizon of beige walls.

I call it the Beige Mile.

For my own sanity, I’ve created my own artificial window to the world by cutting out my favorite calendar pictures from past years.

I thought about how soul-sucking my beige prison feels to me.  The self-doubt keeping me here is strongly woven:  too old to go back to school and do something else, can’t afford to go back to school, no TIME to go back to school.  But most importantly, I have never, and still don’t, know what I want to do for the rest of my life.

Commitment issues, maybe?

I’ve got a family to support, you know.  I can’t just up and quit and read tarot cards for a living.

And still, the wish to look back someday and say “I DID THINGS” niggles at my mind, unfulfilled.

It’s not easy to break down those self-built barriers.  It takes time.

But at least I’m aware now that they are there.  I can make a commitment to exploring them and challenging them.  It may not free me from my beige prison today, but there’s hope for the future.

But more importantly?  I can do everything in my power to teach my son to take risks, to believe in himself, to not let his own self doubt get in his way of doing things that make him happy.

If I can pull that off, I’ll happily serve my time in the beige prison a while longer.


About Flannery

Kid, husband, dogs, my mother, full-time job, maximum stress, minimal relaxation...sooner or later I had to vent. AND we moved from California to Texas. I could start a whole other blog about that.

15 responses »

  1. This is what I love about you, Flannery. You’re not afraid to come out and say things as you see ’em — even if they are difficult.

    And I think your gal on Schmutzie really nailed it on the whole self-doubt thing. Once you “own it” you can get over it and make life what you want it to be. So, you self-doubt owner… where to?

  2. You know, the hard thing is to balance those risks with trying to provide for your family. I guess sometimes it tanks being an adult. But you know what? You’re one of the best friends I know out there and you live, and call life, as you see it. That right there is something and to me it counts for a whole heck of a lot.

  3. Apparently written about me, too. Now I need to get my butt in gear! Beautifully written.

  4. Love this so much, lady. I need to think more about it. I also l also really really love the word “niggle.”

  5. This is awesome! I love it. And I saw that presentation last year and it was incredible. I should go back and watch it again.

  6. You have other commenters called Bec? Is… that even allowed? Anyway, self-doubt is a bitch. Like seriously, it’s the bitch that you knew in high school who even on your best hair day made you feel like you were never, ever going to have your shit together. I think it’s probably a really common feeling to have once your kids get to a certain age, looking down the barrel at the next phase of your life and not knowing what to do with it. But you know what? You don’t have to have all the answers for the rest of your life today. That’s a whole lotta pressure to put on yourself.

  7. Get out of my head! Or don’t. Because you say what I’ve been think better than I could.

  8. Emrys edwards

    Did things? You did and are doing one of the most difficult and rewarding things available to us – making a child and raising home to be a person!
    I did two of those!

  9. Sheesh, Flan – it’s like you crawled inside my head. Totally relate.


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