I recently binge watched Midnight Mass on Netflix and there was a line that has stuck with me. Riley Flynn is in his first AA meeting with Father Paul and during the conversation says "There is a saboteur inside of me, and I always thought, you know, we'd work it out. We'd learn to live with each other, because he wouldn't really hurt me. Not me. I fed him, so he wouldn't hurt me." But that is what the inner saboteur will do if it gains control, it will work against your hopes and dreams and take you down.
I think we have all experienced this voice inside of us telling us we're not good enough and a fraud. If you take a step back and think about it, it's actually quite ridiculous the same mind capable of so much creativity and beauty can have an ugly side with the sole purpose of taking you down.
Now, I don't have any grand thoughts on how to overcome the inner saboteur, but I do know it's real and can be very strong. For me it surfaces as procrastination. Basically, if I don't start....I can't fail. Or if don't meet a deadline, it's not my fault, there just wasn't enough time. Deep down I know all of this is bullshit and it's just me scared to succeed. And there it is again, the ridiculousness of it all....I'm scared I'll do well, so my mind makes me stop and not even put in the effort to try. Why is giving up less scary than doing the work and joys of doing what I love?
The thing is, even if you fail, you at least tried. You didn't let the fear of not succeeding win, and with the failure can be a lot of value. You can learn more about yourself, your process, what you like to do, how people respond to your work, and even what you don't like to do! If you find your own thoughts are holding you back, I encourage you to work on your community....once you start talking to other artists and makers, you'll find 99% (if not 100%) of them have dealt with similar doubts and this connection can be all that's needed to break yourself free from that voice. It will always be there, but with an outside perspective, it's easier to tell it to shut the hell up and get back to work.(If you are wondering what's on my face in the photo, it's a homemade matcha honey facemask...)