How To Tango With A Monster

I was looking through my earlier posts and realized how much I’ve progressed as a writer, and more importantly, as a person. When I first started writing, a thought monster consumed me.

This monster of self-doubt clasped onto my soul and dragged me down. Some days I felt like I couldn’t do it. Some days I felt like no would listen to me, that I couldn’t help anyone. That upset me.

My brain constantly yelled at me, endlessly dragged me down with self-doubt. The thoughts continued to circulate through me, till I was consumed by them. I couldn’t afford to let the thought monster win.

I’ve figure out effectively how to battle the thought monster and here’s how I did it.

Ground yourself.

Live in the present moment. Self-doubt arises from past experiences or future unimaginable problems. The past and the future simply do not matter. Now is the only moment that matters.

The past is irreversible and the future doesn’t exist. Instead, the future is comprised of a series of ‘nows.’ ‘Now’ is the only time that truly matters, as it inevitably and continually occurs.

At this present moment, I am happy. My body is functioning optimally (or as optimally as I think). I am able to think clearly. These are the positives occurring right now. Staying present is the key to being able to focus on the positives, right now.

Have a Kit-Kat

or any chocolate bar. The choice of chocolate really does not matter. The only thing that matters is taking a break. If you are feeling overwhelmed, take some time away from your inner contemplations.

I used to lie in bed till 2AM, constantly worrying about everything. The monster had a firm grip of me until it pushed me off the bed. I learned something from one of my favorite authors: schedule your problems for later.

I tell myself: “I know this is the 2AM tango.” I make an appointment with myself for 2 in the afternoon. I say, “I’ll figure out these worries then, but right now, I’m going to sleep.”

Then I sleep. At 2 in the afternoon, I realize that none of those worries were valid. They were illusions that melted with daylight.

When in doubt, breath.

When I’m riddled with self-doubt, my breaths are shallow and fast. Sometimes, I forget to breathe, till I turn a different color.

So I fight it. I stop everything and just focus on my breath. I feel the air filling my stomach and exhale deep till there is nothing inside. It works so I do it.

Shifting your focus away from doubt, even for a moment, distracts yourself. Sometimes, distracting yourself is hard because you are doing something. But you’re always breathing so you can always distract yourself.

The monster is strong some days, but I feel like I can persevere. The self-doubt holds everyone equally. Some people just have better control over it.

I firmly believe in my abilities and myself. I know that one day I will help a lot of people. I know that my message is out there for people to read and watch and ponder over, and hopefully, benefit from.

The monster needs your attention to survive. Without it, it will wither away and die. Live now, schedule your worries for another time, breathe and pay no attention to doubt and I promise your doubts will die.

Be bold, be free, and love on.