Stories – Day 18

30-Day Writing Challenge

We tell ourselves stories about who we are (identity), what we like (preferences), and how others see us (our masks). These stories are artificially created via the magic of our subconscious most of the time and they all tend to be more harmful than helpful. 

Once I became more consistent with journaling I uncovered many stories, but more importantly, I started crafting helpful stories. Through a little reflection and observation, you’ll realize that each story is a collection of past experiences, interactions, and identities we’ve created or adopted from others. There’s nothing wrong with adopting stories from others, that’s what we do best – mimic each other. The important thing is to notice what’s happening, giving yourself the opportunity to accept or reject this story before embedding it into your subconscious. 

I have a long list of subconscious stories I tell myself, most of which are false or adopted. In the last four months, I’ve wrestled with these stories trying to figure out if they’re mine and something I want to keep, which leads to a lot of anxiety and sadness. To be completely honest, tears have been shed, but that’s the nature of questioning the deepest stories we tell ourselves. 

This process sounds SUPER attractive, right!? Haha…

It’s painful – yes, but it’s definitely worth the effort. One gift I discovered while going through this process is that I can find out what I enjoy and what I don’t enjoy much easier… For me, this is a revelation! 

In the past, I struggled to see what was interesting to me, instead, I did whatever my inner circle thought was interesting. That’s not to say I still don’t do that, but at least now I’m aware of it.

Here’s a recent example… 

I’ve always found myself interested in areas around cybersecurity never making a connection with the industry itself. The subtle signs were always there, but I never noticed because I was telling myself a different subconscious story, identifying with a certain path, and never allowing myself to divert. Some signs were… 

  • Reading two cybersecurity-related books, watched multiple documentaries, spending many weekends studying the technical infrastructure of my previous company out of interest, learning/teaching blockchain for years, and admiring those in cybersecurity.

Even with all of these signs I still never allowed myself to explore the space, I told myself that cybersecurity wasn’t aligned with my path, so I was blind to these subtle signals. 

The moral of this meta-story is to always question the subconscious stories you tell yourself, and create more helpful stories, and this will help you re-discover those subtle signals from the past. 😉