The following letter is a combination of five 5-minute prompts produced from today's session at Foster: Season 1, Reckoning. It is a form of shadow work.
. . .
Hey goblin, what's poppin'? For so long you've been a part of my inner fabric, influencing my life in many ways. I've always known you were there, that sparkly, enticing, opposite voice inside my head that operates in such interesting ways. I've never had the chance to properly introduce myself, and frankly, I've been a bit scared of you and you've never hesitated to surface all my fears. You've always known how to cause a ruckus in the most unfortunate way: causing me to doubt my own authenticity and worth when it really counts. But this is the first point in time where I want us to become a dynamic duo, superhero-style. Like Venom and Eddie Brock. To allow us to form a common ground. For us to colour ourselves green, if we both feel like it. For us to work together to achieve a greater good. It's fun to know that I have all of these “villainous” sides of you baked inside of me. But you know what? I think what would be even more fun is if we can make our dual identities work for both of us, wouldn't you agree?
Honestly, you make me feel so hopeless at times. So angry, so frustrated, so fearful of the thought that somehow I'm not enough. Your voice comes in contortions, misshaped waves with inverted amplitudes: “don't do it, don't do it, don't do it — you can't, you shouldn't, you wouldn't” or “yes, yes, yes, yes, yes — you need everything, there's no use in stopping”. Just like natural organisms, we don't have the biology to live in these extremes, Goblin, and you know that as well as I do.
Anyway, I'll keep this letter to you relatively short as I know you'll always find fault and throw fear no matter what I create. The thing is, I think that's the special thing; you challenge me as a past enemy. I've learned to accept that this dynamic is totally okay — I hope we'll make it productive from now on.
Sam - you've always been someone who performs. That's when you feel most like yourself, but that's when I see the biggest opportunities to take over. You think you do it for yourself most of the time. While that's true, there's a part of you that craves for more, for the attention, for the recognition. But fear takes over, and I have no choice but to go along with it, to try to stop you instead. Here's the thing though: what do we have to be scared of? Why can't we just live and just do? If authenticity is something you want so desperately to pride yourself on, how is that mindset worth anything when you don't even have anything to show for it? You love talking, but talk is so cheap. Stop betraying yourself and do what you need to do to get to where you want to be. I'm being harsh, yes. But since is this the first time you've properly addressed me, I think it's worth having that conversation over and over until you finally get it. Maybe in this kind of world, we'd be allies instead of enemies. You're getting closer, Goblin
Courage is going to be your best antidote. The courage to play. The courage to pause. The courage to strive, but in your own race at your own pace. The courage to say no. The courage to work hard again. The courage to get your shots on goal. The courage to face your fears. The courage to open. The courage to explore, to experiment, to express. The courage to love. I can't emphasize that enough because I think you've been holding yourself back forever. I know that Slumpy Sundays are a real thing; just pick yourself back up tomorrow to reset and restart. The best thing you can do for me is to energize me with your courage. Your Ally
I see a blue ocean of possibility: sky-high potential in my learning curve, passion projects actually leaving the ground, new relationships that I'm wholly open to cultivating. More specifically, I think I'd stop second-guessing my untapped ability to be technical, producing tangible artifacts in varying degrees of quality — everything from the duct tape broken prototype apps to formative no-code legos to functional revenue-generating MVPs. In the same vein, I see a world where my creative projects become thoughtful containers for my ideas and feelings, catapulting essays and commentaries into the hands of many close friends and internet strangers alike. If I didn't let the voice control my urges to truly build, then I would have a wide-ranging portfolio of projects that look more like a conveyor belt rather than an empty factory.
I need to accept my imperfections and my insecurities of looking any kind of way. I talked about my performative side earlier and how it's always been this shadow asset for me. At the same time, I think real authenticity comes from paying close attention to what your values and needs are and straying as little from that as possible. For me, that means not letting my fear of the universe — the unknown, the undefined, the unstructured — get the better of my own natural talents. I've realized there are two gaps in my pipeline of creativity: the very beginning and the first 33%. Sometimes, I stop myself before I even get started. I don't leave myself room to chip away at this grand idea. Other times, I take a few decent cracks at the build, and then lose steam. What happened to all of that inspiration at the outset? The Goblin probably knows.
This is a year of focus, attention, and alignment. The tools are there, the lego pieces are laid out, and the systems are well-oiled. All that's left is for me to lean into my truth and start crafting the world I want to see.