Looking back over the last decade or so of my life, I’ve come to realize what my biggest obstacle has truly been- And that’s me. That’s right- I’ve been my own biggest obstacle and it’s taken me a long time to finally admit that. But now that I feel like I’m finally in a good place in my life with better mental and emotional clarity, I can admit things I had trouble with before… and this one of those things.
Over the years I’ve blamed the obstacles I faced on other people, bad luck, and many other things. Yes there were times when other people, bad luck, or another factor did cause an obstacle for me, but most of the time it was my doing. Turns out I’m not only my biggest critic, worst enemy, but also my biggest obstacle as well.
Looking back, I know why I was my own biggest- It’s because I didn’t believe in myself and didn’t think I deserved to have good things or amazing opportunities happen for me. I gave up so many times or quit before I even started purely out of fear. For every one reason why something could go right, I came up with ten reasons why things would go wrong. Being in the negative and self-depreciating mindset I was in, the ten reasons would always outweigh the one. And looking back on those ten reasons, they were either excuses or just pure and utter bullshit I used to make myself seem like I was in the right for not taking chances.
I got in my own way more times than I can count in several areas of my life. I missed out a lot of possible friendships because I automatically assumed the other person wouldn’t like me so I didn’t see the point in trying. There were many writing contests I passed up entering because I didn’t feel my writing was good enough and that if I entered I would lose and it would just prove that I wasn’t a good writer. I’ve passed up so many opportunities because of one excuse or another when the truth is I was just afraid of rejection and failure. But I failed simply because I didn’t try. I automatically jumped to a conclusion and ran with it. Now that I’m older and hopefully wiser, I’ll never know what could have come from those opportunities if I had simply just tried.
It feels so weird to admit all of this now, not just to myself but to anyone who reads this post. I’m sure any of my friends and family members who read this have probably waited for this revelation. To everyone else, especially any younger readers I might have, I hope this helps prevent you from making the same mistakes I did. Don’t be your own worst critic, worst enemy, or biggest obstacle. Treat yourself with love, respect, and kindness. If you fall, get back up and keep going. Don’t assume, assuming gets you nowhere good. Take a chance, it might lead you somewhere good, and if it doesn’t go well at least you tried, so be proud of yourself for that!
If this post is able to help at least one person not be their own biggest obstacle, then I feel I did what I set out to do. As writers, we should write to inform, inspire, and entertain. If we manage to accomplish one or all of those things with our words, then we did what we set out to do! My hope is with each post that I accomplish at least one of those things for each person who reads my writing.
So thank you for taking the time to read this as I continue to share parts of myself and my journey with all of you. I hope everyone has an amazing and obstacle free week!