Let me introduce you to devil #1. I call her inadequacy.
She likes to sit back and remain quiet for a long time. She likes to watch me work and build and create and produce. She likes to watch me accomplish the things I set out to do. And the minute I’ve traversed some ridiculous mountain, inadequacy likes to beckon me to look at Facebook. Then Instagram. She urges me to digest a lot of status updates about other people’s engagements and blooming love lives. Then she gets really close and whispers that everything I have done, everything I want to do and everything I will do are all diluted by my lack of a partner. Devil #1 doesn’t think my success is enough without someone to share it with. Devil #1 ignores the fact that I have family and friends–a community so close knit, bundled and bound around me that I am already sharing my success with a cavalry of supporters.
I tell devil #1 to stop whispering. I tell her that her whispers can’t ever get louder than the stomps of my cavalry.
Meet devil #2. I call her fear.
She’s not as aggressive as devil #1, but her passivity and silence are probably worse. She’s always there putting doubts in my head and delusions in my heart. She never knows shit about what’s coming next, but that doesn’t stop her from thinking that whatever comes next is going to destroy me. She doesn’t know rainbows, only storms. She doesn’t acknowledge triumphs, only trials. She doesn’t put faith in the future; she gives power to the past.
I tell devil #2 what I heard recently during one of my rare appearances in church: fear is only an illusion. Devil #2 is not even real.
Meet devil #3. I call her insecurity.
Devil #3 has always believed I’m an impostor. She has given in to the notion that I won’t ever truly make it as a writer without a journalism degree or bylines for major publications. Devil #3 doesn’t believe in creating my own legitimacy or carving my own path or establishing my own value. Devil #3 just thinks there is one way to do this thing, and she doesn’t think I’m doing it the right way.
I ask devil #3 to look closely at Twenties Unscripted. I invite her to see everything I have done without the resources she is so convinced that I need. I tell her that the bricks holding up this platform are those of self-discipline, resilience and raw talent.
The devils on my shoulders signify that I am flawed, fragile and fucked up. I introduced you to them so that you remember I am human. And when you are human, confidence is not always a natural asset. Confidence is learned. Built. Eradicated. Rebuilt. I brought you on this journey so that you can watch my confidence get built. Eradicated. And rebuilt. Again and again. I invited you in so that you could watch me quiet and quell every single devil on my shoulder.