The internal negative voice

Hazel wants to know why I don’t always have the confidence to write about the things on my list of voice-related topics for May’s NaBloPoMo (see comments on this post). Somewhat serendipitously, if not particularly cheerfully, answering her question gives me an opportunity to write about the ‘internal negative voice’, which was one of the topics on my list. I have no idea what the proper term is for this, but what I mean by it is me telling myself negative things about myself (or other things) on a regular basis. I expect most people have the same problem, unless they’re complete egomaniacs, but I know some people experience it more than others.

I’m not writing about all the things on my list of voice-related topics because I think my blog posts are rubbish and  boring at the best of times, and, quite frankly, I can’t be bothered to spend time writing anything especially meaningful because it’ll end up being meaningless and dull and I may as well not have bothered*.

The above is a good example of my internal negative voice. It’s the same voice that is setting me wondering whether I’ll be able to do my job when I go back to work. Part of me is desperate to go back, because I need to get back to a normal routine and I need to see people! Another part of me is scared that I will have forgotten how to do my job, that I won’t know anything and I’ll just be a nuisance. I felt inadequate enough before I went away and now I really won’t know what I’m doing when I go back. I think I dread this feeling of inadequacy more than anything, even more than the thought of having to deal with my line manager (the two may related, however).

Oh, I probably shouldn’t even be thinking about work! And whinging certainly isn’t going to help me or make anyone who reads my blog very happy. Sorry. Time for another walk, I think.

*In case you’re wondering why I carry on writing my blog, I usually only write when I’m feeling more positive about myself and my ability to write, or when I think I need to (for example to convey news or information) but the problem with doing NaBloPoMo is that you have to write every day however you’re feeling!

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4 thoughts on “The internal negative voice

  1. The negative internal voice can be a number of things. Freud would suggest it is the superego looking for moral perfection. In this instance it is either writing perfection or authentic perfection. Others would refer to that negative voice as the internal editor which tries to get you to follow all the “shoulds” or norms you’ve internalized. The unfortunate thing about this voice is that it has a tendency to shut down creativity. But I would argue there are other voices you’ve internalized. Through our parents, mentors, faith communities, school, etc. one usually has encouraging and accepting voices, voices that believe in your capacity or abilities or at least in the honest effort one puts to a task. you wouldn’t want to get rid of this voice of caution, but if you know it is too restrictive access the other voices as a challenge. don’t muzzle the negative voice, but surround it with others that offer balance. warmly.

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