Thursday, February 12, 2009

The Next Chapter – Secret #6 Conquering Saboteurs

I’m taking part in an online book blogging club called The Next Chapter. This post is part of our discussion about The 12 Secrets of Highly Creative Women. Feel free to jump in to the conversation here or with some of the other posts about secret #6.

My Little Crazy Thoughts

When I first read the chapter highlights, nothing much stirred for me.  But, as the words sat in my head and marinated with the rest of my experiences and history, a theme came to me.  My most pervasive saboteur is ‘the little child.’  She isn’t so much a child’s voice inside of me, but that’s how it manifests on the outside. 

When I think of all the times I want to share my ideas about anything, I get small in body and voice.  Mentally I think that my ideas lack validity and are easily dismissed.  Or that people won’t hear them and will talk right over them. 

Relapsing into childhood is one of the things I struggle most with in life.  I usually do pretty well, but when I’m in a context that reminds me of the past, it’s so easy to slip back into old patterns and habits.  Some of the things that this comes with include: not wanting to take responsibility, crippling shyness, self-effacing sarcasm, and sarcasm in general.

This is also an issue for me because I look young.  Usually I don’t mind being mistaken for someone much younger than I actually am, but in some contexts, it’s very disempowering.  I suppose this particular problem will eventually solve itself as time marches on.

Ironically, my child-like sense of play and fun is also one of the sources of my creativity and inspiration.

Fake it until you Make it

I’m reminded of one of my favourite blogs about Happiness written by Gretchen Rubin – The Happiness Project.  One of her 12 Commandments is to ‘Act the Way I Want to Feel.’  It turns out that our mood is more influenced by our actions than we realize.  It’s something I try to do with all sorts of things and works really well.

Discernment and Ownership

As I read the last bit of the chapter, one word did leap out at me. 


This I think is key to dealing with our saboteurs.  We really need to see what’s going on in our life and recognize our doubts and fears for what they really are. 

Discernment really puts the power back into our own hands.  It isn’t up to our friends or family to recognize our inner gremlins and defeat them.  We can get support and love from them, but the final step is ours to take.  We need to see what our own issues are and take ownership of them.  We get to choose whether they are going to stop us or whether we are going to knock them down and achieve our dreams anyway.*

*Wow, I seem mean.  First I visualize a little child and then I visualize knocking her down.  I just need to remember that she’s really just a gremlin.


Art Visions said...

I agree about discernment. You have to take time to understand where the sabatoge is coming from and why.

Jamie Ridler said...

It sounds like that Gremlin is clever to be a little girl because then you don't want to be mean and hurt her! But the real little girl is the one who is getting ready to stand up tall, find her voice and say 'hey get out of my way' so she can reach her dreams.

(wow, the word verification is 'twintall'!)

Genie Sea said...

Knock the be-otch down! She is just a wolf in child's clothing! You go girl! :)You are a woman now :)

Bohemian Single Mom said...

Yay for you on identifying the sabatoge!
The past is gone.

Gypsy said...

*fake it Til You Make it* is a term I have used and have utilized for years when I have come uncertain and self-conscious, etc. When those Voices* come to play, I a stop to it by just...well..Doing it!~ :)

Great Post!~

Snap said...

Oh, boy. I have the little girl gremlin, too. I guess it comes from my parents -- they weren't much on giving emotional support. I do think, as I've gotten older, that I have put the little girl on the back burner -- I'm going to try what I'm interested in and to heck with her!

Tell that Gremlin to go live somewhere else!

Her Speak said...

Ooh, the Little Girl Gremlin--she's a good one. Very sneaky for a kid. Well said, interesting insight!

Sucker Punch that Kid... ;P
Much Joy!~*

Kim said...

I think it's great that you are recognizing what is disempowering you and taking steps to regain your power! You go girl!!

intothedawn said...

I can understand how disempowering it can be to be mistaken for someone younger; that happens to me as well. I only just recognized it in this past year or so, people talking down to me as if I was much younger. My mantra became, "I'm 40 damn years old and I'm an adult and I'm not going to put up with this anymore!"

etherealgraphics said...

Hi Jennifer, I too used to fear the meek child within me in certain situations and yet, it was in she that I felt most happy, creative. I feel the little girl in me is truly a sweet reflection of my own true nature of love and peace and happiness. It is nice to embrace her whenever my life gets rough or I've got too much on my plate. Thankfully, the little girl in my never left!

KathrynAntyr said...

"Packing our own parachutes" is how I refer to taking ownership. It is key, isn't it?

Not taking on other's fears and anxieties is another key.

amy said...

Yes it is a choice. Kind of like we create our own reality really. Nice empowering post!

wildheart said...

Yes, it is so important to see clearly how the sabotage is happening- cause that saboteur can be tricky. Thanks for a great post!


Today, I've learned to daily become the creative woman imprinted upon my soul!

Lisa PN said...

Great post with so much to think of!

I too have often been thought of as much younger than i am and it's interesting what happens when people realize that i am about twelve years younger than they think i am. So interesting.

Yep, wolf in child's clothing for sure!

1,000 Faces of MotherHenna said...

Oh, I soooooo get what you are saying!!!! Thank you for the reminder about Discernment -- needed that. Zap, new thought in my head: I was thinking maybe that my gremlin which is similar to this is just playing a mirroring trick -- you know it sees my inner child and mirrors her in the hope I won't hurt it -- but it's really the wicked witch playing a trick in the mirror! Oooooooooh that witch! Thank you for flipping the switch on my brain cells! :)