My Own Worst Enemy

My Own Worst Enemy

July 19, 2021

“But the worst enemy you can meet will always be yourself.“

In writing, one of the first things I learned was a story must have tension. In fact, author C.S. Laken teaches about four main pillars of a story and one of those is “conflict with high stakes.“ No one wants to read a book where nothing happens. People are attracted to conflict and tension keeps them turning the page.

Nicholas Cage

Nicholas Cage in Face/Off
(Paramount Pictures)

“I think what makes people fascinating is conflict, itʼs drama, itʼs the human condition. Nobody wants to watch perfection.“ Nicolas Cage

Now, I donʼt know if Mr. Cage is an expert on the human condition, but he does have a point. Watching perfection is boring (and so is reading about it). But what does this have to do with Living Write?

Conflict Part 1

There are six types of conflict in a story. The first is Character vs. Self. Of the six types, this is the only one that is internal where opposition comes from within. In my book, Chasing the Darkness, one of Azraelʼs most trying enemies is himself as he battles who he was and who heʼs meant to be.

Devil & Angel

I know youʼve heard that saying, “the devil made me do it,“ and not that I care what the devil feels, but he gets blamed for a lot. Honestly, I cause enough damage on my own without needing any of his help. Anyone relate? 🙋🏻‍♀

I am, many times, my own worst enemy; like for instance with food. I know I shouldnʼt have that Oreo dipped in peanut butter but its seductive voice calls me from the pantry and I give in. And then, because I blew it, I decide to eat three more (of heaven forbid, the whole bloody container).

How does one tackle the enemy within and stop destructive behavior? I found an article from Destination Hope that gives 5 steps. Iʼm only going to highlight three but if youʼd like to read the entire blog, click here.

3 ways to stop self-destructive behavior:

Negative self-talk is a no-no. Talking negative about ourselves can be very destructive and become a hard habit to break. Remember my post on thinking about what youʼre thinking about? If not, click here and check it out. We have to learn to take those negative thoughts captive and not believe the lies we tell ourselves.

Get Support. Having an encouraging family member or friend can help you as you deal with self-destructive behavior. Also, thereʼs nothing wrong with getting counseling. My husband and I have been to counseling four different times and we just celebrated our 25th anniversary. The point—donʼt do it alone.

Be Prepared. Knowing your triggers can curb those destructive behaviors. I tend to be an emotional eater and Iʼve discovered (as I researched this) that when Iʼm alone at night is when I swan dive right into the pantry in search of sugar. So, I need to come up with a strategy to counteract this, especially when Chase goes back to college and Louie is traveling. Iʼll keep you posted 🤞🏻.

Conflict in what we read or watch is necessary (and entertaining), but maybe we can eliminate some of it in our own lives. Hereʼs to being kind to ourselves, spending time with encouraging people, and having a game plan. Letʼs do this thing!

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