Photo by Jorunn Lorenzen
At our very core, so many of us are tightly wound with insecurities.
We often don’t feel good enough, smart enough, qualified enough, or worthy enough.
These insecurities can become our undoing, our own personal attack on the good things in our lives.
We put on our smiles each day to cover these insecurities up, pretending they are not there, and, for the most part, as an interim measure, we succeed.
Yet often in the dark, lonely hours when our self-esteem is low, we feed them. They become our demons, and they can change our outward appearance to those around us. They attack us until we become wounded and appear unhappy. Until we become weak and lash out at those we love, sometimes unprovoked. We sometimes allow these demons to transform the innocuous words of others into words of attack. They become a barrier to good intentions.
Your demons, at their core, are your insecurities, in a sense, the cause of the demise of the universe within you.
So, it is time to put on your cape and spandex suit and go out and face these suckers head on with superhuman strength! And believe me, you will need it—this will be one of your hardest fights.
There is nothing harder than the brutal honesty of facing yourself.
Give yourself a good amount of alone time to really think about these times; go for a long walk, or sit and take notes, whatever gets you into that space.
Think about what makes you defensive, of all the times when you haven’t felt good enough. Once you have a good idea of the themes (not attractive enough, not qualified enough, not deserving enough, and so on), think about why you feel like this. Here’s the thing—you are beautiful, you are amazing, and you got where you are because you earned it or have what it takes! Please realize this and accept it. Find ways of accepting your worth.
Instead of dwelling on your doubts, focus on your actions and how you can accept your worth, how you can be proud of yourself, and move forward from there. It is all in your belief of yourself – confidence and humility.
If you feel your chest tighten or hear your voice raise, do your best to pause and take a second, or even a toilet break, to think about what has caused this, and come back and approach the issue or person with calm and caring.
Even if someone is, and this is very rare, out to get you, approaching the situation with calm and caring will knock it on the head. But, in almost all cases, we misinterpret others and let our demons respond. We miss the true intentions.
We all communicate differently—men; women; the young; the old; people from different backgrounds, upbringings, and experiences; and so on, and this affects the way we hear. If you find yourself reacting negatively to what someone says, ask him or her if what was said was meant. Give those around you the benefit of the doubt, don’t jump to conclusions, and give them a chance to explain.
This will prevent many unnecessary hurts and begin to build that confidence in yourself.
Once we realise that the words spoken to us are filled with good intent, and we can understand what else might be feeding these demons, we can begin to starve them off.
But this is breaking an old habit and forming a new one. We need to be aware of both the time and consistency required for remedying this. We cannot let our past dictate our future, let alone tear it down. Set yourself up for success in all your future endeavours and relationships by understanding your demons, and then begin to slowly let them go.
Be prepared for new ones as they will pop up from time to time. Just give yourself time to realise what is causing this and take time not to let it rule you.
One of my favourite lines nears the end of the following poem.
“After a While” – Veronica Shoftsall
After a while you learn the subtitle difference between holding a hand and chaining a soul,
And you learn that love doesn’t mean leaning and company doesn’t mean security.
And you begin to learn that kisses aren’t contracts and presents aren’t promises.
And you begin to accept your defeats with your head up and your eyes ahead, with the grace of an adult not the grief of a child.
And you learn to build all your roads on today because tomorrow’s ground is far too uncertain for plans, and futures have a way of falling down mid-flight.
After a while you learn that even the sunshine burns if you get too much.
So plant your own garden and decorate your own soul, instead of waiting for someone to bring your flowers.
And you learn that your really can endure;
That you really are strong.
And you really do have worth.
And you learn, and you learn.
With every goodbye you learn.