Addressing Doubt

Guest Post by Nancy Goulet

It nags at me. Taunts. Like that unraveled thread at the edge of my sweater tempting me to tug, tug, tug. Its pestering call begs me to create and bring something into being. ‘Begin,’ it badgers.

Equally strong are the reverberating threats of fear. ‘Can I create something worthy of being regarded or remembered? Will I simply waste my limited time in useless efforts? Will my creations be anything of value or just an ego-centric attempt?’

The two sides play at tug of war. I am at the center, paralyzed. I do nothing except bear witness to their incessant chatter.

Image from MS Word online clipart collection

‘Take up your pen. Give birth.’

‘Put it down. There is nothing new to say. Everything has been said by better folk than you.’

‘But they will never say it in the same way you will. No one will look at the world in exactly the same way, with your eyes.’

‘Why are your eyes, your insights any different, or more important? You are vain to think your point of view is special.’

‘Does it need to be special? Wouldn’t it be better for it simply to be true?’

The conversation ping-pongs within the walls of my skull.

Hope rises.

‘Create for the simple honesty that doing so is a basic instinct bubbling within. Stop thinking you need to be special or great. Your creations are your babies. Every parent knows you love your babies for different reasons and for exactly what they are and the potential of what they might become.’

Doubt needles in.

‘What if they become nothing? Just a waste of time and space?’

Hope defends.

‘It will never be so. The waste is not to create…not to give an idea the opportunity, the time, the space to grow. There will never be enough time if we don’t seize the chance to realize our ideas and breathe life into our dreams.’

One pulls. The other retaliates and yanks. Back and forth, back and forth in a seemingly endless shouting match between my ears.

Image from MS Word online clipart collectionWho wins?

I don’t know.

But for now I am holding a pen.

NancyG_avatarNancy Goulet is a writer and illustrator of children’s books. She is also a graphic designer and owner of studiowink, a boutique design firm that specializes in the fields of publishing, education, technology, health and finance.

Liz LeSavoy

You really hit home with this one Nancy! Thanks for the boost. 😉

Paul Czajak
Great Post Nancy! Reading this makes me think you should be writing novels, you have a beautiful way with words.

Reblogged this on Vanessa Peay and commented:
This article has helped me with some doubts I have

Marianne Knowles
Nancy, thanks so much for your emotional honesty! It’s a constant battle to squash doubt enough to keep going. Keep holding that pen!

Mary Jane
A beautiful and encouraging post. Many thanks.

Carol Gordon Ekster
Great post, Nancy. Doubt sneaking in is part of being an artist. We all feel it but it’s nice to know we are not alone. Let’s keep grabbing for that pen. We can not give up!

Robyn Campbell
Love this! We’re all in this together. We all struggle with doubt. I have my pen in hand.🙂

Daily struggle when one is an artist…whether writing, snapping pics, painting… You worry. Am I being too cliche? Am I not being cliche enough? Is this something someone will read? Wait, what am I asking? Of course they’ll read. Maybe.

It’s nice to be in good company with these struggles. Thanks for this post.

It’s always wonderful to hear we are not alone in this struggle! Thanks for sharing! My pen is at the ready as well!

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