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Building my wings on the way down

 {Image by Kelly Ren}

Two weeks and two days until I start living my dream. Since the day I decided to leap I have not felt one bit of fear. No what-ifs, no how-will-I-pay-my-mortgage thoughts, no self-doubt. Until last Friday. One comment from someone that made my stomach flip, spiralling me into 24 hours of self-doubt and fear driven thoughts. Enter the false self. 

I often speak of false and authentic self. In a nutshell, from what I understand, our authentic self is the part of us that is driven by the heart. It is what gives us that butterflies-in-the-stomach urge to do things that excite us. It is what drives us to do what is at the core of our being, our passion. My authentic self is the part of me that has inspired and encouraged me to leap, to leave the security of 23 years of full time work to do what makes me smile when I wake up in the morning and excites me like nothing else.

The false self however is the part of us that is driven by fear. It is the side that reminds us that we need to be responsible, it discourages us from following our dreams to do what we feel is expected of us. In my case, my false self has been telling me for many years that I have a very decent, well paying job, and that without this well paying job I would fail. My success has relied on money, my false self has made sure of that. And if ever I considered leaving said job to follow my dream to write, my false self would promptly tell me I would fail, that without my income I could not live with the financial security that I have in the past. 

So last Friday, when I mentioned to this someone that I was leaving my full time employment to become a freelance writer, his response of “Oh, you can make money from that?” made my stomach flip. It was an instant reaction that required no thought. I felt queasy and although I know the answer to his question is “Yes, yes I can”, my false self latched onto the doubt in his question and started to reside and fester in my gut. I went home that night and I grappled with the self-doubt, my authentic self reminding me that I can do this. I CAN DO THIS. I went to bed, and woke up the following morning still riddled with self-doubt.

The thing with self-doubt is it resides in your own mind and is driven by you. I sent some crazy text messages to a friend along the lines of “Tell me I can do this?” and her responses were all I needed to shove the false self back into its box. It has no purpose here, I have a dream to follow and I am damn well following it. I take comfort in the fact that for the many months I have thought out, planned and implemented my huge life change I have only ever felt this self-doubt once. I completely trust my gut and my gut says go for it. The only way to leap is to take that step and build your wings on the way down (Cate Bolt said so). If I spend my days worrying about money and relying on that very decent income in a job that does not put that flame in my belly, I am afraid I will reach a ripe old age and feel lifeless, dreaming about what could have been.

I am a creative soul; I live, eat and breathe words. I want to take pretty photos and spend my days seeing the beautiful detail in the smallest of things. I want to enjoy afternoons of silence without agenda and hours on my laptop pouring my heart onto the keys. And if I can make a buck or two doing so to pay my mortgage, I will be a happy soul. A happy, creative soul.

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  • Mrs Lettuce - You ever it was that planted that seed of doubt is going to get a rude shock, right? You will prove them wrong most definitely. Rrrribit, Rrrribit. Go get em Pegs!ReplyCancel

    • Peggy Saas - It’s amazing how fear from others can encroach on us. I see it in the faces of a few people when I tell them what I am doing. Thankfully I have people like yourself cheering me on Cass, it totally outweighs the doubt! RRRIBIT!ReplyCancel

  • Elinor - YES YOU CAN Miss P. You have followers all over the world for goodness sake who love what you write and will be megaphones spreading the word of all you do. So excited for you – if ever you need a blast through your self-doubt just print off all the fabulous things people say read them. Remember you have a duty to live your dream.
    My biggest motivation is the quote ‘the biggest influence on a child is the unlived life of their parent’ – that’s enough to give me a kick up the backside to keep on going for my clients and my family. You will be fabulous and I can’t wait to be a part of your journey from the sidelines. xxReplyCancel

    • Peggy Saas - Thank you Elinor, I was fist pumping after reading your lovely and encouraging words! You’re so right, I have a duty to live my dream. And who am I not to fulfil that duty!

      I am going to print that quote and hang it squarely on the wall in my study to remind me if ever self-doubt creeps in again. Thank you, it sure is comforting having you on the sidelines cheering me on. xoReplyCancel

  • Elisa {With Grace & Eve} - I like to think if we are following what makes our heart sing then we can’t not succeed xxReplyCancel

    • Peggy Saas - Elisa, a friend told me the exact same thing. She also said “If you’re doing what you really love, the money will follow” and I have to agree. I will make it work, I know I will. xoReplyCancel

  • Reannon - Of course you can do it Peggy! I am sitting by eagerly awaiting to hear all the tales you will tell about your new dream life, partly because I love to hear of other peoples happiness but also so I can live vicariously through you too. It’s going to be awesome because you make it awesome Peggy xxReplyCancel

    • Peggy Saas - Thank you Reannon, I love the encouragement. I think as I get closer the reality is sinking in and I am feeling a combination of extreme excitement and anxiety. Good anxiety though (if there is such a thing)!

      I can’t wait to share my tales with you. :) xoReplyCancel

  • Cherie @ raising master Max - This post speaks to me.

    My god, it speaks to me.

    I am entirely lead by false self. I want the same dreams as the ones you are pursuing in two weeks & two days, but I think, how do you make a buck doing that?

    And I guess I am lead by the fear of our very recent big debt. I don’t want to be there again. That was not joyous.

    So, I will live vicariously through you in the interim.

    Your creative soul pursuing the dreams that this creative soul dreams of, will absolutely be enough for me right now :)

    xxReplyCancel

    • Peggy Saas - Oh that’s adorable Chez, you’re encouraging me living your dream. You too can live out your dream babe, maybe not in two weeks and two days, but you will. Give it time. You are in a good place now financially and there is nothing wrong with enjoying that newfound freedom and security for the time being. You will know when it is time to leap when you longer enjoy what you do. When a job becomes mundane and uninspiring us creative souls crave something deeper. You and I are alike, you know what I mean.

      Hold on for now sweets, you will know when your time to leap is near. I also wondered how on earth can I make a buck from writing, but I am finding that it is very possible. I look forward to having you cheering me on babe, you’ve been a huge support for me since the start. Thanks Chez. xoReplyCancel

  • Rachel - Your on the right track Peggy… The more people start to believe that success is not measured by how many dollars in our bank account but how wide our smile is…. freedom will come.ReplyCancel

    • Peggy Saas - Rachel I am amazed more and more at how many measure success by dollars, it has never been my motivation. As long as I can feed my child and pay my bills, I am content financially. I would much rather wake up in the morning with a spring in my step feeling inspired than do something less inspiring to just put money in the bank.ReplyCancel

  • Deb @ Bright and Precious - I am not sure what makes people undervalue freelance writing (or the need to make comments like that). Know deep down in your authentic creative soul that it IS possible to have a career doing what you love. It’s something I hold to as well. I’m hoping to take a very similar leap soon, so I can identify. Congratulations Peggy – I wish you love and strength as you build your wings. xxReplyCancel

    • Peggy Saas - Oh that makes me smile Deb, I love seeing others leap and follow their dreams. I keep telling myself I can make a living out of my true passion, I need to not listen to others when they express their own fears by trying to relate them to my dream.

      Thank you for the encouraging words Deb, you have reminded me that I can do this! xoReplyCancel

  • Linda - Don’t let others keep you from singing the song you are here to sing Pegs in this grand symphony of LIFE. How COURAGEOUS you are sweet thing…HOORAY you have FOUND your song…let it continue to play in your heart & CREATIVE soul forever sista<3 And Celebrate…as BIG MELODIES are about to happen in Peggy's world. I am honoured to be able to sing along with you. <3 And oh what a beautiful song it is <3ReplyCancel

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