Inspired But Also Demotivated

By Sarah Aterrado - February 05, 2023

I remember it was summer of 2003 when I created my first blog. I did it out of the need to channel my inner Hulk who gets infuriated at life's slightest inconveniences into something rather creative. Then I got through that teenage angst phase and became mature (surprisingly). Started sharing my opinions—without being pompous, my experiences—the good, the bad, the mundane, and pretty much every minuscule achievement and monumental milestone in my life. I have always thought it's not a bad thing to have something to look back to. 

I know people rarely read blogs nowadays. Most people crave for aesthetic visual content, usually in the form of a curated feed or fifteen-second reels. But then again, even though I have active accounts in most of these content-sharing platforms, I still wouldn't want to fully detach myself from this little old habit. I have not changed my content just to stay relevant. This blog is still about me and the mundane things I do. And it's reassuring to know that there are readers who have been somehow inspired despite the fact that my blog lacks depth and seriousness.

But for the most part, I have used this little space on the internet as a training gym to build and flex my writing muscles until I make it as a Palanca awardee.

It is just not happening as I have envisioned and planned it though. 

I often find myself slipping into a slump. And sometimes, I would stay down there because drowning in self-doubt is easier than believing in yourself. I even declined those offers to become a columnist for a local newspaper and a contributor for an online news publication because the mocking voices in my head tell me I could not do it. And I think my middle finger agrees. 

Look how swollen it has become. I guess gotta stop writing typing.

My writing journey resembles a roller coaster ride. There are the overwhelming highs and crippling lows, the slow and relaxing ascent, then the big exhilarating drop. The ride will eventually come to a stop, which is a good time to take breather before I hop on to the next, probably more challenging one.

The thing is, I have been riding the same roller coaster again and again. I have not improved over the years. And I am not talking about the technical aspects of writing here because I can say I've gone a long way when it comes to English grammar and composition. Of course, there is still so much to learn but I am at the point where I feel like I have mastered my craft... and not in a good way. To put it simply, I have been doing the same thing over and over. My writings have been trivial then and now because, well, it's the easier thing to do.

Five years ago, I dreamed of joining and winning the Palanca Memorial Awards for Literature. Four years later, I snapped into my senses and scrapped the idea of winning. Heck, it didn't take long before I scrapped the idea of joining too.

A few days ago, I was ready to abandon writing altogether after reading Atom Araullo's winning Palanca piece. I was impressed, inspired, and at the same time demotivated because it only proved how juvenile my writing skill is. 😅

And today, I know exactly why I couldn't muster the courage to start a draft. I have not been diverse in the things I talk about. Or maybe I am just devoid of ideas that I have been writing nothing but these simple, everyday occurrences in my life. Nothing of real importance. Nothing that leaves a valuable lesson or insight. Nothing that enriches the lives of those who read it. Nothing that's worth writing ten pages long.

I want to be better than that. I want to be brave enough to hop on to the next roller coaster and take the front row seat knowing there will be a steeper drop and sharper turns that I know would hurt. 

I think I should impose an internet ban on myself just to keep my thoughts clear of outside influences. The voices in my head—that are probably rooted from all the thoughts and opinions I read from others everyday—are getting too loud and destructive. I want to hear my own voice this time. 

And maybe, just maybe, I will discover a stronger voice. And maybe, just maybe, I will realize I can actually write something that is empowering and meaningful. Then maybe, just maybe, I will emerge victorious in a pool of professional writers and seasoned journalists.


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  1. hello ms. sarah! i'm a silent reader here. please continue writing because i love reading your blogs and you also inspire me to write. i'm copying a bit of your style gani. i love how you deliver your thoughts and opinions. so please continue doing what you are very good at. :)

    1. Hello! Thanks for dropping by. It really makes me happy to know that there are people who appreciate my writing. It does pump me up to write better knowing that people actually read my stuff. Thank you so much!