Wednesday, March 7, 2012

The What If's

I was messaging with my pseudo-niece this evening and the topic of what if's came up. Originally, it was about what will I do money-wise next school year since my income is going to simply disappear this summer. (Stopping my dayhome because everybody's moving on.) In my case, every time I start thinking about job/career possibilities, a little nagging voice says, "Why aren't you writing [your book]?" And the what if's start:

"What if I can't finish the book/finish it in time?"
"What if I can't get published?"
"What if I can't figure out what to write?"
"What if it doesn't make enough money?"
"What if...?"

It hit me that I do this with food, too.

"What if I change my diet and I still have allergy symptoms?"
"What if I change my diet and I don't feel any better?"
"What if I change my diet and I don't lose the excess water/weight on me?"
"What if I finally make the commitment to veg*n and can't find enough yummy food to make?"
"What if I finally make the veg*n commitment and it causes a lot of problems with extended family?" (We get together for meals a LOT.)
"What if I try that recipe for supper and my family won't eat it (because they're really picky eaters, just like me)?"
"What if...???"

I could go on and on. It didn't hit me until tonight just how many what if's I've really got going on inside. I don't usually think of myself as a doubting kind of gal, but it seems I am. At least in some areas.

What is the purpose of what if? What does it do? Does it show us our doubt? Is it fear of forging ahead anyhow and it's trying to stop us? Is it a form of anxiety? Does it matter? It's a pest. An annoyance. A self-created block. The what if's above are like little bullies or liars doing NOTHING but holding me back from achieving things I want to achieve! This is starting to make me mad! lol

I've just had a thought: What if I ignored these doubts or told them to take a hike? What if I treated such doubts as lying thoughts out to ruin me? (That sounds decidedly paranoid, doesn't it?) What if I forged ahead and wrote that book and changed my diet, and everything else I'm self-blocking regardless of problems or difficulties that could arise?

Maybe what if's aren't so bad. Maybe we just need to use them to work for us instead of against us.

(Taken from How to Escape the What-If Trap. A good read if you, too, 
are suffering from negative What If's!)

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