The reason I started publishing my writing pieces was to convince myself that I am a writer. Say goodbye to Mr. S***head Imposter Syndrome!!!

You see, unlike Stephen King and Russell Baker who were practically injected with compliments on their writing talent by age 9, I was never affirmed in my writing as a student or a child. So since a lack of affirmation was present, then how could I possibly believe that my writing is unique and different and valuable at all? I couldn’t. I didn’t know. I just assumed I was bad at it and had no talent since no one ever told me otherwise. So pursuing a public health degree seemed appropriate…

In order for me to be a good and professional writer, I need to believe it about myself first. If I didn’t believe it, how could anyone else believe it? People can sniff timidity from a mile away. I needed to unlearn the lie I took on about not being talented enough, not having an authentic enough voice, not having experience in writing so why do I think I could make it? But the only way I could replace this with positive reinforcement is if I wrote shit down and put it out there, knowing it would go 1 of 2 ways. One, I gain no affirmation or support and realize the writing thing just ain’t for me and I begin to explore something different. Okay, I’d be bummed as heck, but it wouldn’t last forever. Or two, I do gain affirmation from others, I keep writing and then eventually believe I actually have talent and become a professional writer which has been my desire all along. Three weeks ago, I was dwelling on the first scenario and ready to throw up my hands and quit and sit in a pool of self-deprecation because I just was not hearing much from those who read my pieces. But in sticking with it and writing through the pain of writer’s block and lack of creative juice flow, I have officially inherited the second scenario. Each piece I wrote killed Mr. S***head Imposter Syndrome off one limb at a time.

Now this, you guys, is what the twenties are for; unlearning and relearning the truth about ourselves. Unlearning the lies and bad thought patterns we took on from our past and relearning positive ones that only build us up.

Singer, songwriter, author, and rockstar woman, Jewel, so beautifully sums it up in her interview with Joe Rogan, “I inherited an emotional language from my family and when I moved out I knew I needed a new one. That’s five billion data points, our brains just pattern match. Think about how many data points that is, emotional language is immense and I learned one from my family. I knew where to go to learn Spanish, but I didn’t have anywhere to go to learn a new emotional language. I started by looking at other people and when they had a skill I liked, I’d study them. What I’ve learned over time is you really do have to neurologically rewire yourself, you have to have these behaviors, you have to teach yourself a new emotional language.”

In my own experience at age 25, these past five years have been dedicated to unlearning my inherited emotional language and learning a brand new one. Here is what used to make up my language.

You can’t make it as an artist. Artists are weird. The younger generation doesn’t want to work. Does that mean I don’t want to work? Does that mean I’m not capable of work? Of being something important? A 9 to 5 office job or health care job is the only valuable job in this world. I’ll never be seen as something. I’m too lazy to do this. I mean this is the language I inherited as a kid. Don’t get me wrong, I love my family deeply, but most of them have followed a very risk-averse working path, perhaps a judgment for artists mindset which is a longer personal story in itself, it’s been their jive, I thought it was mine too, but it ain’t anymore.

Like Jewel, I knew I needed to change the neuroplasticity of my belief system that takes up most of the room in my brain. I needed to make room in my brain to love myself. I needed to know that I am capable human being. That becoming an artist is not a bad thing. That I have a purpose here on this earth, so finding tools to reprogram my psyche was required. I am privileged to have access to therapy, so someone is helping guide me in the rewiring process, I can’t take all of the credit for doing it on my own, no way. Jewel, however, was homeless and alone with no safety net and no access to therapy. So, sometimes, you do have to take it into your own hands.

Therapy or not, if you need a new conscious brain map, if you know it’s time to start thinking better of your life, you must enter into the dark places of your soul first, in order to remake your new map of treasure. I went from thinking I wasn’t capable of getting a job, holding a job, or even making my own choices and decisions in life, to now believing I actually had a chance in making it as a writer. But facing my past instead of being scared of it, is the only reason why.

What is your inherited emotional map made up of? Are you aware that you have one? Have you taken yourself outside of your thoughts and been able to distinguish where they’re coming from? Have you put in the conscious work to find a new emotional map? If so, how do you feel? Have you come a long way? Do you love yourself more now than you did when you functioned off of the inherited one?

If you have not yet observed your inherited emotional map, it could be holding you back from being a good worker, from flourishing in relationships, from taking a risk, from being decisive, from knowing who you really are and who you have been created to be. Hold my hand and journey with me through unlearning and rediscovering the beauty of who you really are. Because remember…

The 2nd commandment says, “Love your neighbor as yourself.” But…

You can’t love your neighbor if you don’t love yourself.

This, my friends, is a writer who finally believes in herself and who also believes in YOU.



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