There are two men that seem to be trying to live within my shell.
The first fellow is a self confident one. He seems to have plans and is ready and eager to carry them out. He seems himself in positive light: strong, confident, a leader, a swordsman and writer, ready to accomplish whatever he puts his hands to. He has goals that he is ready to share with you, even if you find them to be two hundred years out of date. He is bold and daring, paying no heed to those that are naysayers.
The second fellow is much more quiet - almost invisible. He seems to be making do with life as it is. He is much quieter than the other fellow and his goals seem to be non-extant except for a general sense of making it through the day. He will tell you that after doing the work that needs to be done because this is the work that he has, there is little left for following goals which seem to have no relevance to his actual life. He theoretically believes he can do things but seems to have a very low threshold for what can be done.
It is not that these two argue so much when they bump into each other in the confines of my head, it is that they are both competing for space at the same time. It is hard to be self confident and lack self confidence, to have great plans yet feel you cannot carry them out, to want to do great things yet feel as if you have no time to do them. This leads to a great deal of confusion and even paralysis in dealing with any situation, a sort of back and forth motion as I move to do something in fits and starts before convincing myself it is a pointless pursuit - although I really want to do it.
How do I resolve this? I am not sure. I can grasp that at some level the two men cannot ultimately exist together for the simple fact that they will cancel each other out, leaving nothing. It has to be one or the other: either boldly facing the sun of achievement or retiring to the shadows of complacency. These are the options.
Why then do I feel reluctance to face the sun of achievement? It seems foolish, does it not? Who likes constantly feeling as if they are trapped or held back, waiting for a day that will never happen?
The only thing I can grasp is that somehow I believe that acting boldly - accepting the role of the self confident self - will result in one of two things: complete failure (for it is confidence based in my dreams and not in something sturdier) or that it will create issues in the lives of those around me.
To the second point, those around me have adapted to the way I am. To change that abruptly - to change into someone who does not fall back into the shadows or turn aside from goals or is even bold from time to time- is a change to the operating relationship. That can create issues.
To the first point, this is the challenge I have faced my whole life: am I capable? Can I? Do I possess the abilities and more importantly the will to do what I set out to do? Is what I want right? I am constantly looking for verification from God and others that I am doing the right thing in the right way, sometimes to the point that I will do nothing without that verification. I lack the confidence that I myself have chosen the correct path - and that I am capable of doing it.
How does this end? After almost 30 years of fighting, I have to make a choice. Believe - or not. Move forward - or retire. Confess that you believe that you can - or agree that you cannot.
There are two men that seem to be trying to live within my shell. Ultimately only one of them can.