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A Sign

I follow my Inner Guidance.  My Inner Guidance doesn’t always guide me to do things that make sense, but it is always right in the end.  No matter how many signs I receive from the Universe that my Inner Guidance is right, I still have doubt—especially when I am being guided to do something that does not make sense.

Recently I decided to ask the Universe for a sign that I am on the right path.  I requested this and then walked in a ravine hoping some miraculous sign would appear.  The sign could appear in the sky, or perhaps an angel could appear on my path saying, “Gary, you’re on the right path and doing the right stuff.”   As I walked, I often said out loud, “Please, Universe, give me a sign.  Please, Universe, give me a sign.”

And lo and behold, there it was right on my path!  The Universe gave me a sign!  It wasn’t what I was expecting, but it was a sign.  It was an old, rusted sign on the ground saying, “No Trespassing.”







“Come in!  Come in!”

“What?  You’re not upset to see me?”

“Why would I be upset?”

“You were before.”

“That was before, but not now.  You’re part of my creative process.  That makes you part of me.  Why get upset over part of me?  Why not embrace part of me?  Come in.  Sit down.  Make yourself comfortable.  Stay as long as you like.”



I use reason and logic most of the time.  The only time I don’t, use reason and logic, is when I am following my gut feeling.  Often my gut feeling will suggest I do things that do not make sense.  My gut feelings come from an unlimited place far beyond reason and logic.  That means they do not translate in common sense.

So far following my nonsensical gut feelings has not harmed me.  But that does not mean that I am not filled with self-doubt.

Is this the best moment of my life?

“Of course it is!”

Who said that?

“I did.  I’m your self-doubt.”

I did not know that my self-doubt could talk.

“You don’t know a lot of things.”

Okay, if this is the best moment of my life, then why are you here?

“I want to share this wonderful moment with you.  Why not accept me as I am?  Why not accept that I am always with you?   Accepting me will not stop you from putting one foot in front of the other and going forward.”

But I want certainty that I am doing the right thing.

“If you aren’t, then you will find out.  You must trust the process and be flexible.”

My self-doubt is telling me to trust the process?

“Why not?  Now let us enjoy the best moment of your life.”


“Who the hell do you think you are posting your own words?”

Hey, Self-Doubt, you sound like my father.

“That’s the idea.”

Well, Daddy, say what you want but you are not going to stop me:


“I write more when I have no place to write.”


“Have you noticed that unknown writers are said to have copied other writers,  whereas famous writers are said to have been influenced by others?”


“Anyone saying bad things about me is either lying, or ill-informed.”


“I’m a non-active intellectual.  I love arguing with people who agree with me.”


“I ran out of ideas while writing a story about a writer who is blocked.”


“When creating, I try to focus on the process and have fun, and not focus on how people will judge my writing.  Yep, that’s what I try to do.”


“It was such a fantastic story idea before I ruined it by turning it into writing.”




Hey, Self-Doubt, I have been thinking.

“I hope you did not hurt yourself.”

You said that I can choose not to believe you.


If I choose not to believe you, then I can become an obnoxious, conceited bastard.

“True.  It is possible, but highly unlikely.”


“My hold on you is too strong.  I used your father to program you from the time you were a child.  I had him criticize you constantly; everything you did was never good enough.  This program is so deep in you that years after you left home as an adult and married, your wife constantly criticized you; everything you did was never good enough.  Look at the people you attract now.  You attract people who criticize you and tell you that what you are doing is not good enough or wrong.  You will never be free of me.   Never!

I will be free of you if I deprogram myself.

“HA!  The United States will become a communist country first before you ever come close to getting rid of me.  I am so confident of my hold on you that I wish you good luck in becoming an obnoxious, conceited bastard.”

Okay . . .  Well . . .  Thanks for the well-wishes.







Self-doubt comes and goes and comes and goes and comes and goes and comes again.  Perhaps it does not go.  Perhaps it stays, but hides in my psyche leading me to believe that it has gone.  And then it leaps out, when I least expect it, and scares the confidence out of me.

I do not feel good when I do not write, yet I engage in this self-sabotage with encouragement from self-doubt.

Is what I write worthwhile?  Does it matter?   Is my writing getting me anywhere?  No matter how much other people try to reassure me, my self-doubt says, “What you write is not worthwhile and does not matter.  Your writing is getting you nowhere.”

Self-Doubt, have you been sent to torment me?

“You can choose to see it that way, but my mission is not to torment you.  My mission is to keep you humble.  Too many pompous people exist.  My mission is to stop you from becoming one of them.”

But you stop me from writing.

“I do not.  You stop yourself by choosing to believe me when I tell you that what you write is not worthwhile.  You do not have to believe me, or you can believe me and write anyway.”

You’re trying to encourage me?

“Know this, Gary Johnston:  My mission is to stop you from feeling self-important; my mission is to stop you from having an ego the size of the Seven Seas; my mission is to stop you from becoming an obnoxious, conceited bastard, and I will say anything to complete my mission.”

Uh–er–thanks for the heads-up.