I had a dream in which a giant monster kept trying to pull me into its lair made up of dark hills.
It was a tall, gangly monster, and covered in dark shadows. It captured me several times, but each time, I managed to escape. I struggled to see it’s face each time it pulled me backwards (I wanted to see the face of what was causing me all the pain), but never could.
Finally, I had enough. I broke free from the monster one last time and knew that would be the last time I would allow it to capture me. I saw it come for me one last time but ran away far enough so I could still see it, but it could not reach me. This last time, I looked very hard at the dark figure and stared it down. My confidence must have scared it because it turned and ran behind the dark hills. As it turned, I finally could see it’s face. I saw that the monster looked like me. It had red hair and green skin, but it had my face. Though that shocked me, I still turned and walked away.
I walked away from the monster version of myself.
In thinking about this dream, I realized that my dream was kind of true. I believe all humans have something I call a “monster” version of themselves hidden within. Our monsters tell us we aren’t pretty enough, smart enough, skinny enough, strong enough, or talented enough.
Our “monsters” are kind of like the dark side in the Star Wars movie series. It’s a side that we all battle often. I feel like our “monster” (or dark side) wants us to give up on our hopes, dreams and goals, but we must use our inner light to gain enough courage to stand up it.
I have days sometimes when I definitely feel my “monster” pulling me towards it. When this happens, I got into the habit of saying the phrase “Not today Monster” out loud. It sounds kind of silly, but that’s the point. It makes me physically aware of what is happening and helps pull me back to the lighter side of life.
I encourage you to try using the phrase “Not today Monster” the next time you feel a twinge of your monster pulling you backwards. I think it’s a habit that can save us all some valuable time when trying to reach goals and achieve dreams.
Try using the “monster” concept with your kids too! So many children struggle with making choices. (Do I pinch my sister to get the toy or do just I ask her?). Help them understand the difference between what the “monster” would want them to do or what they should really do. If they feel a pull to pinch, tell them to say out loud “Not today Monster” to help steer them towards the better option. Kids love it when adults explain behaviors with things they understand (kids GET monsters, thanks to books, movies and more).
I could see where some incredibly smart children would start blaming the “monster” when they decided to make the choice to pinch their sibling instead of asking for the toy, and there’s solution to that. In that case, take the “monster” concept out of the situation because that kid is smart enough to understand the difference between the choices.