Listening to my inner voice

August 22, 2016

Happy Monday!! I hope your weekend was fabulous and that you are ready to take on a new week.

Mondays feel very different now that I am not on my way to an energy draining job, depressed knowing that I have five more days to go before the weekend.

If I had not decided to listen to my inner voice, I would still be depressed and feeling stuck at my old job. I am an introspective person, who is always writing, and so the idea that I had been ignoring my inner voice makes me uncomfortable.

But it’s the truth.

For as long as I can remember I have always loved to write. Writing in a diary or journal has always been comforting to me. The sound of the pen or pencil moving across the page, the excitement about a new blank notebook, and the satisfaction of filling up a page or the entire notebook with my words; all of this is exciting stuff for me.

Writing is like a gift I give myself that keeps on giving. After writing there is that feeling of release I get from emptying my brain. And then the big payoff is reading what you wrote.

I first learned of morning pages from the book The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron.

I am not always consistent about writing the three pages first thing in the morning. But whenever I have times of deep despair I return to morning pages. When I start  writing morning pages again, the hardest part is resisting the urge to read what I wrote immediately. But, I just make myself wait because it is so worth it!

One morning while doing my morning pages I noticed I had gotten to the last page of my notebook. I decided enough time had gone by, and I decided to go to the beginning of the journal and read the morning pages from the last four months.

And that was how I learned that I had been ignoring my inner voice.

The overwhelming theme of this batch of morning pages was that I didn’t like my job. No real surprise there. But as I read more, I learned that I had been feeling tired of my job and had been struggling to go there for over a year. And I found out about specific things that I didn’t like about my job.

I learned that I was unhappy spending so much of my time with people I didn’t feel close with.

I learned that didn’t like the vibe of the place and that I didn’t like the office culture.

I discovered that I felt like my job was a dead end job.

I learned that I had started to exist in a constant state of dread. And that even though I was not interested in working there anymore, I was reluctant to make the change.

My morning pages showed me I worried a lot about what others would think. I wrote a lot of thoughts like “others are going to say I’m dumb” and “how will I ever get another job like this.”

My inner critic felt like it was irresponsible to leave a job just because I dreaded going there. My inner critic was sure that I was making the right choice by staying in a safe job for a stable organization because good jobs are hard to come by, especially for someone like me.

I asked myself the question that I would have asked someone I loved if they said that about themselves. What is someone like me? What does that mean exactly? I thought about that hard for a moment.

How would I describe myself? I cringed in embarrassment when my answer was, “as someone who hates their job”.

After reading my morning pages, I decided to accept that I was feeling the way that I was feeling. I decided that I didn’t have to prove anything to anyone, and I did not have to feel bad about not wanting to work there anymore.

I realized that hating my job and trying to make myself hold on to it like it was a prize was my way of feeding my self-limiting beliefs.

I gave myself permission to leave the situation that was not working for me.

Has this ever happened to you? Were you ever surprised to learn something about yourself from your writing?  What did you do when you gained this insight? Leave a comment and let me know.

Ilea Eckhardt

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