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My inner censor

I am reading ” It’s never too late to begin again” by Julia Cameron recommended by a blogger whose writing I love so much- Molly Stevens.

I have had at least 3 blog posts started but not completed. I have carted all my yarn to my office, so I can keep my fingers busy and not stress over what might have been ( readers will know what I mean). In many unknown ways, my not going to do my Master’s has affected me- the first being my weight gain of over 10 kilos( 22 pounds) and my don’t care less attitude. There have been other stresses all of my own creation and nothing seems to count any more. I don’t have that positive attitude I used to have before that said I can do anything. Everything I try an inner censor comes and says – Oh, what’s the point ?”

Julia says that during work, there have always been colleagues who were critical of our work but as we near retirement, there is another stronger critic, our inner censor. In the chapter two, she says, when we say

” I’d love to design clothes” 

Censor says ” You can’t -you are too old to learn fashion design.

“I’d really love to design clothes”

Censor ” You are not fashionable. 

I’d really like to try, says you. 

Censor : ” What a terrible waste of money”.

” I can afford it”

Censor : You really are a fool

From Julia Cameron’s ” Its never too late to begin again”.

I have an inner censor too. The conversations in my head go on like this :

“I really want to study further, become somebody, make a few publications, become famous. I want to be able to go to my college reunions or school reunions as “somebody”.

Censor : You can’t do it. See what happened last time- you tried to get the visa and the visa woman rejected you. You had all the documents, the money everything in place, but she rejected you. You can’t do anything right. 

” I think I should try again. After all, they are holding my admission for me. Or I should apply to Harvard this time. If someone wants something strongly, the whole universe conspires to give him that said somebody famous. So I should try again.

Censor: No point trying. Even God is not in support of this venture. Your husband will be alone when you go.

” I’ll try to go for the summer course and come back after the summer”.

Censor: Even that won’t work. Just watch how you bungle even such a small thing up.

This weekend, I picked this book up again. I didn’t complete the first reading, though the book has been with me for ages, ever since the library bought it for me. Even reading a book has become a chore these days. If you ask me, am I depressed? Not outright but inside there is a deep, gnawing hurt that doesn’t seem to be going away. I pretend everything is ok and the tears don’t fall anymore but it is there.

Julia tells us to “shrink one’s censor”- describe it, how old is it, what does it look like, what are some of its favorite remarks, or even sketch it. Julia recommends that we name our Censor and this way, we can have conversations with a real named person and make a joke of it, if you will. 

I like this strategy. Over the weekend, an old senior plagued my dreams- her stinker and the way she bullied people around our hostel as Hygiene Secretary came back to me. I decided to name my censor ” Banani” and it is an apt name for my censor is not one- there seems to be a multitude of them, a veritable forest. “Banani” means forests. 

From the book :

“If you hear a voice within you say you cannot paint, then by all means paint and that voice will be silenced”. -VINCENT VAN GOGH

What are things I cannot do ?or says Banani?

Banani says : 

” You cannot crochet again. Your left thenar area hurts so much.

” You cannot lose weight. You cannot control your appetite, even gluttony.”

” You daughters will not get married.”

” You will never return to your home country”.


33 thoughts on “My inner censor

  1. Susie, long ago I heard a speaker say, “It’s opposite world. Whenever discouragement comes and fills you with defeating thoughts, it’s from the enemy Satan. He’s trying to defeat you. But since he’s working so hard to discourage you, you must be a threat to him. So it’s really “opposite world”. It’s opposite of all those defeating lies.
    Just my thought. . . You should try again, but instead of deciding where to apply, ask God where does He want you & what died He want you to do.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Sometimes Susie…..sometimes the silence is a prayer. One word …Jesus….is the only word you need to say because God already knows your heart and your hurts.
      I understand that voice inside that tells us we are never ever going to be enough. I have started wondering enough of what? What constitutes “enough”? The voice says you are not enough…God says ,”You are everything I have made you to be. Rest in me. Trust me and my timing for your life.”
      I know what you mean about overeating. In the first month of being sick I could hardly make myself eat because my stomach rebelled. That has changed and I cannot get my brain to tell my mouth when to stop putting food in it. The more I eat, the heavier I get, the worse I feel so I medicate with more food. I think I need to chat with God on that.
      I will be praying for you Susie and for me to!

      Liked by 2 people

      1. The “enough” is standards we draw by comparing ourselves with others or with an envisioned, supposedly better version of our own selves. It is always about comparison. If we learn to be satisfied, half the issues will be gone. I pray for you so you regain everything you lost and come back to a fuller you.
        Susie

        Liked by 2 people

  2. Thank you for the shout out, Susie! And the reminder that I need to pick up Cameron’s book again. My sensor has been working overtime, and I’m going to follow your excellent example and name her so I can give her a talking to! I have started a meditation practice and it is helping me notice the emotions that come and go without being consumed by them. And it has also helped me judge myself less. I have a long way to go, but I have faith I’m making progress. I will pray for you that you can notice this discouragement without letting it control you. You are so much more powerful that you can ever imagine!

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    1. Molly,
      You cannot imagine how much you helped me by putting this book in my path- almost providential. Even more than the judging is the attitude of ” I don’t care” or ‘ I care two hoots”. That is dangerous. God keep us away from complacence and nudge us towards using our talents- always.
      Susie

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Julia Cameron is a great and inspiring writer Susie. I have a few of her books. One of my favorites is ‘Finding Water.’ It has some of the same advice. I loved her words so much I made myself inspiring slide shows of her words to watch when I feel that inner censor prodding me. Thanks for sharing these words Susie. You are an inspiration to me too. Kathy

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      1. I think she is secular, although she writes with wisdom. There are some things, as in all books, that I don’t agree with in her books, but there is also a lot of good advice for overcoming mental blocks we burden ourselves with, or bad memories we’ve carried with us most of our life.

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  4. Wow this is really so true the inside censor does crop up all the time for me! I will try those suggestions to quiet it! You can do whatever you chose to Susie and you will be successful no matter. Just now you have helped me so much.

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