Fighting My Demons

Everyone has their own set of demons.
I thought I knew what mine were.
Photo Credit: Flickr by Éole
Photo Credit: Flickr by Éole
But when I started editing,
I discovered my worst demon:
Self-doubt.

I suppose self-doubt has been lurking about in my subconscious for years, probably my entire life, but until recently, I had not known the range of its power. For several days while I edited my work, self-doubt crawled around my head and set up road blocks, forcing me to vet and validate every thought. The demon then slipped down my throat like a large rock and lodged itself there, reminding me every time I drank or ate that I wasn’t good enough. Doubt’s minions then climbed into my lungs, tainting each breath to feel like arctic air coated in failure.

Self-doubt consumed me.

And I let it.

Editing my work became a bigger chore because I had to compete with the voice of self-doubt in my head that second-guessed and criticized every change I made. It became so loud, it was all I could hear.

So I worked harder.

And each page gave me a level of pride that slowly reduced the grip of self-doubt. I focused on the positive, I adjusted my attitude, and I challenged myself to be stronger than the self-doubt.

Now that my edits are complete, my bout with self-doubt has passed. I don’t know how to banish it forever, but I know how to press on.

And pressing on is the part of the journey that makes you stronger.

Is self-doubt one of your demons?

18 thoughts on “Fighting My Demons

  1. Self doubt is the worst! I don’t know a single writer who doesn’t struggle with it. It’s part of the human existence. Good for you for pushing through it.

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  2. editing is a definite bane!
    i have a hard time turning off that inner editor, but it’s awesome when you get to a point where you know you’re nitpicking, changing it then changing it back because you can’t make it better than it was! then you’re done! (but i could still make improvements, ha ha)
    way to persevere! that’s the way to win in the writing game!
    happy f day!

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    • Thanks 🙂 I’ve definitely developed an inner editor with this go round. (And I did that too… going back and forth, re-editing sections 🙂
      Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting.

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    • Andrew,
      Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

      I’m glad self-doubt isn’t one of your demons 🙂 It turned out to be a real bugger for a few days. As for editing, I’m a fan after this experience .

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    • Tackling that obstacle was very rewarding. (And posting this blog helped me learn that I wasn’t alone 🙂
      Thanks for stopping by (and I loved the word of the day and your flash fiction) 🙂

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  3. Self-doubt and second guessing…ugh, those are so annoying! Personal demons so hard to face, yet ingrained in our behaviors they are hard to weed out and get rid of. Can’t wait until I have mine conquered!

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  4. Pingback: There’s Always An Outside | janetkwest

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