It’s been a ride full of punches in the face this week, but I won’t give up. It’s a bit like…when you’re trying to do something different…everything goes against you. But you know what happens? When you keep going, you start to understand that voice inside that guides you.

I was working on a design for my shipping box, and I couldn’t find the right supplier, or shape and size. Spent hours, lost sleep…and all I could think of was: BOXES. When I was looking at my box design, I remembered how proud and happy I felt when I finished it. But after a while, I felt insecure. Is this box really worth it? On one side, I was proud of the design, I worked around 12 hours non stop to make it, and it looked quite good and slick. Still, a voice inside me was telling me ‘it’s not good enough’. I was annoyed at it. I mean…not only the suppliers are against me, I’m against my own self! But then, instead of removing that ‘not good enough’ thought, I asked myself: Is this design really not right? And then I realised that I was fighting against a feeling that I had for days. There was something I didn’t like about it, I didn’t know what, but I was trying to deny it because I was too attached to my work.

I just thought that’s an annoying fleeting insecurity that I have to get rid of. Still, the thought persisted. I didn’t listen, and started to feel really low. So I asked this annoying voice: why don’t you like it? That’s all it took. And the answer simply was – it’s just not me. I just had to be kind to this voice, and listen. I then realised that the box really was too pretentious for me. It wasn’t a bad design, I’m sure some would prefer it. But I was trying to be someone who I’m not, just because I saw others opting for this very classy look.

So I changed it.

Final packaging option…pfew!

Before, it was a black, slick looking box featuring my name. Now it became something that’s so much more ‘me’. Now the box is an expression of my gratitude for anyone that would buy something from me, it just feels so right. Before, I liked the way it looked, but nothing compares with the feeling of ‘it’s right’. Now I’m happy with the design because that’s exactly what I would like to say to anyone buying anything I make: Thank you! I am so so grateful, you really are amazing!

It’s strange how sometimes, the voices which we think are mean, are actually well intentioned. I was looking desperately for my inner voice, not knowing it was there all the time, but not really how I expected this voice to be. This voice doesn’t tell me much. It just says: yes or no. And this voice has told me so many times ‘no’ that I ended up thinking it’s the enemy. But behind that no…there’s a huge treasure.

Just ask yourself, why do you feel like ‘no’? What can I change for the better? Can I do now something about it right now?…we just say we have insecurities. But so many times, it’s hard to accept the truth and change, so we just try to remove the uncomfortable thoughts, instead of trying to understand them. But when you do, it’s so relieving. Behind that ‘no’ there’s so much growth. A ‘no’ is as good as a ‘yes’ if you just listen to what it says.

So now, whenever you have doubts or insecurities, ask that annoying voice that sometimes brings you down if there’s something you can do to improve now. If you do this, insecurities will become friends and really nothing can stop you!

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