Home » On Memoir Writing » Memoir Writing – Discover Your Life – Self Loathing

Memoir Writing – Discover Your Life – Self Loathing

*I apologize greatly for being two days late on this post. I apologize to infinity and back.*

Have you ever told yourself “I am a bit hard on myself “?  Do you remember the occasion? The little voice that says this is the voice of your Self and your ego’s criticism at war with who you are and what you do. Your ego is knocking you down and your authentic self is fighting for you.

This voice is telling you that something is wrong. Self needs something and your ego is kicking you down. Listen carefully to the thoughts running through your head when this voice pops up. There’s a message. There is a lesson to be learned.

Since Sunday I have not been writing. With a preschooler in the house I need to rise early to get my writing out of the way or it isn’t going to happen.  It especially is not going to happen when my husband is not around.  He left to New York for business on Sunday.  The catch with getting up early to write is that I am ready for bed around supper time.  I get pretty grumpy in the afternoons.  So I head to bed early and let my husband put our little girl to bed.  Only I can’t do that this week.

I made a conscious decision to not get up early this week to write because I didn’t want to be too tired to parent and run the show around here.  Got to have your wits about you with a seventeen year old girl in the house. Not to mention patience for a demanding three year old.  I even painted myself a glorious image in my mind about how grumpy I would be if I woke up early to work.  I would be laying on the couch watching movies and yelling all day long at my family.

Low and behold, I am miserable.  I lack patience.  I have not attention span.  I am grumpy and heavy and I can’t stand it.  All I can think about is writing and working.  I walk around the house saying, “Don’t be so hard on yourself Marlene.  It is just one week.  One week of a sacrifice.  You are not a bad mother.  You are just trying to cope with not writing and juggling everything else.”

Only writing can release this heavy pressure on me.  Why did I tell myself to not write?  So I wouldn’t be a bad mother.  Well, what have I got?  Not a great mother.  I would be better off if I wrote.  Quite often on the days that I write I am the happiest. I have  unbounding vitality! Well, on good writing days that is. Some days my vitality’s not unbounded but content.

The point I’m trying to make is that we lie to ourselves. Since Sunday I have been telling myself that this is the way it has to be and that I’m being too hard on myself as a mother, I’m being too hard on myself as a writer. When the reality is that I want more. I want to write even if it will make me tired.  I would be better off if I wrote.  My family would be better off if I wrote.  Why do I, or we, tell ourselves these lies?

When we hear this voice in our mind that convinces us of something, this can lead to self-loathing. What I am really telling myself is that I could be better than what I am.  Hey aren’t we all perfect even in our imperfections?  Also though, it can tell us something specific.  Like I have standards of being a mom I want to meet.  I have standards as a writer I want to meet.  I have standards of a work-life that I want to meet.  We could go deeper and evaluate these standards but for now lets just remember when was the last time we said “I’m being a bit hard on myself.” to ourselves.

When have you:

1.  Told yourself “I am too hard on myself”?
2.  You given up something you did not want to give up?
3.  Not done something you really wanted to do?
4.  Judged or compared yourself to someone else?
5.  In a world that strives for perfection what “imperfect” part of yourself do you loath?

Photo by Sunstone Creations

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3 thoughts on “Memoir Writing – Discover Your Life – Self Loathing

  1. 1. My husband tells me that I tell myself that I am too hard on myself constantly. Unfortunately, I just self talk this way.
    2. I’ve given up knitting, time at the gym, time at the piano, because I want that time to write. While I love writing, I hate that giving up other things I like because there aren’t enough hours in the day!
    3. I’ve skipped concerts or dinner plans because I feel like there’s already too much in my schedule.
    4. I compare myself to those who do not have the physical flaws I see in myself.
    5. My skin. I’ve been on accutane twice and at 28 still look like a fifteen year old.

    Good questions!

    • Thanks for being so open Sarah! I love it when people put themselves out to the world in an honest way. I struggle with that at times.

      I too have given up things that I love to make time for writing. My yoga instructor says that if we make time for the important things in life then the little things will get done too. If we let all the little things get in the way then the big things can’t get done. Our cups over fill.

      In one class she gave us this example of filling a cup with small beads and stones. Then she put the big stones in and the cup was too full. But if she put the big stones in first, then poured the small stones and beads in everything fit. The big stones represent what is important to us.

      I loved this cup analogy. I am told it is on the internet somewhere but I could not find it to attach the link.

      Also, I wanted to say that I had a coworker in her 40’s still in a war with her acne. She tried some stone therapy and it took it away. I will find out more for you in case you are interested.

      Thanks for stopping by and I hope our paths will cross again!

      • Thank you for the thoughtful reply. I am open to anything (well, I wouldn’t eat baby kittens, so I guess I do have limits!) to help out with my skin, so I will gladly watch for your recommendations!

        I have heard that cup analogy before as well. I think all writers should physically do that ritual at least once a week, just to remind ourselves that we can fit everything in. In fact, I may go buy a jar today and do just that.

        I agree – I hope our paths cross again as well. Your blog seems just up my alley!

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