Sometimes I worry that I’ll never complete my second novel. Sometimes I think I peaked with my first book and I’ll never achieve success of that level again. Sometimes I dread checking my e-mails in case there’s one from my publisher, asking how it’s going. Sometimes I think I’ll run out of ideas, that my sentences and structures are not good enough and never will be. Sometimes I hate the day. Sometimes I just want to close the door and go to bed and sleep it off, start again tomorrow. Sometimes I get angry when I look at myself in the mirror. Sometimes I feel like I’m not a good enough Dad, not helping my kids develop and grow, not doing enough for them. Sometimes I wish I could take them away from society and raise them without the influence of other people. Sometimes I feel hopeless and useless and like I’ll never be truly successful. Sometimes I worry about what sort of life I’ll give my family. Sometimes I avoid looking at my bank balance. Sometimes I wonder what people will say about me when I die. Sometimes I wish I was a better person.
Sometimes I realise the worst could happen, but it hasn’t. Sometimes I think that everything could fall apart, or, it could get better. Sometimes I realise how bright the sun is, how the wind pushes through the heads of the tall trees. Sometimes I sit and watch my son playing, when he doesn’t know I’m looking, and I marvel at how perfect he is and wonder about the things he’ll do in his life. How I’ll always be there for him no matter what. Sometimes I hold my daughter’s hand and it feels like I’m the most important person in the world. Sometimes my wife will touch me on the back and I feel so lucky to have someone believe in me. Sometimes I experience something that’s so resonant, so in tune with who I am, that it feels like the pieces of the world have fallen into place. Sometimes I connect with people that make me realise everything is possible. Sometimes, most times, I believe in myself and know, not think, that everything will be fine.
Because life isn’t just what happens, it’s what you bring to it. Everyone has doubts and insecurities, it’s how you absorb them that defines who you are. How you see yourself influences how others see you, so if you can’t be confident in who you are, that’s what you’ll project. Sure, you’re not perfect, but neither is anyone else. Yeah, maybe you don’t feel confident today, but why not? Why not choose how you approach the world. Other people will respond how they decide, but they don’t define you. You do. You decide how you live your life.
Look at what you have, not what you don’t have. See what’s possible, not what’s in the way. Know the people that are important to you. Know who you are to them. They’re the ones. They are the ones you need to show the way. Show them that you can achieve whatever you set your mind to. Show them you can choose how you approach the world. And go do it.
There’s nothing else you need.