I'm usually pretty good at ignoring thoughts I know are silly.
You know the ones that tell you they don't like you, because they didn't reply to that text message? (They love you, they just have their own stuff going on, or they forgot, or they lost their phone, or etc) Or that the mums at school are only pretending to like you because your kid is friends with their kid (how dumb, they are lovely and so are you, of course they like you, and really, who cares if they don't?!). Or the thoughts that tell you that everyone else went and did something fun and you weren't invited? (who even is this everyone else anyway?! And even if you weren't invited to something, so? You don't invite everyone any time you do something, do you?).
Those silly ones I know how to shake off.
And also, the fact that they are indeed silly thoughts, is very obvious.
A quick shake of the head and a squaring up of the shoulders usually sorts them out, and no one even knew I had them.
But what about the big ones?
They usually come along with an element of truth and they're quieter and sneakier.
I kinda roll with those for a while without realising.
Head: Maybe you shouldn't blog anymore
Me: Yeah I'm thinking about not blogging anymore
Head: So many other people are doing the same thing, and better than you could anyway
Me: Exactly. And they are super creative and always have something of value to say
Head: Your voice has no value, you should probably give up writing altogether really
Me: I know, right? I don't have anything of value to add. I'm not even that great at writing. Maybe university is a waste of time even.
Me and my head, sometimes that's how we roll. In fact, that's been the too-ing and fro-ing in my mind for the past three weeks. I've been immobilised. I've overthought to the point where I've frozen in fear. Comparison grips my heart with its sticky green fingers and I am suddenly not good enough.
And then suddenly, HANG ON, WHY AM I ENTERTAINING THOSE THOUGHTS?!
Why have I even entertained the lie that what I do is about anyone else?
Why do we entertain the lie for one second that we aren't good enough?!
This blog has, and always will be an outlet for my creativity - a space to write.
When I write, my thoughts come alive and untangle themselves and I hear His voice more clearly and I see myself with better clarity.
So, I tell myself now, when these thoughts come no, you can't stay here, you don't belong.
Loose thoughts and emotions* that have you thinking of yourself negatively, or robbing you of value have no place. You need to kick those things out.
Fight those thoughts with positive confession. I dare you.
I'm Em and I'm super creative.
I love the way that God wired me - with a desire to communicate through story, and image
I love that I can write and let words flow out of my heart
I believe God can use what I do to draw people to seek Him
I'm wired to write.
It's my God-given passion and I have a voice and I'm going to keep using it.
Elizabeth Gilbert in her latest book Big Magic, which I am devouring, says "... because in the end, creativity is a gift to the creator, not just a gift to the audience... Just write anything and put it out there with reckless abandon..."
So, I don't know about you but I needed to encourage myself to just keep doing my thing.
Whether or not it gets read. Whether or not it gets noticed. Whether or not 100 other people are already doing it better.
“Don't ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive and go do it, because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” **
And if anything tries to tell you otherwise, it's all in your head.
Be brave and just keep doing what you do.
* 2 Corinthians 10, MSG
** Howard Thurman