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Which Wolf Do You Feed?

I was watching Death In Paradise the other night (a British murder-mystery show set on a beautiful island in the caribbean that I highly recommend) and the detective shared a story about the two wolves. 

It really resonated, so I jotted it down to share with all of you. It turns out it is a Cherokee legend, and it goes like this: 

ONE EVENING, AN ELDERLY

CHEROKEE BRAVE TOLD HIS

GRANDSON ABOUT A BATTLE THAT

GOES ON INSIDE PEOPLE.

HE SAID “MY SON, THE BATTLE IS

BETWEEN TWO ‘WOLVES’ INSIDE US ALL.

ONE IS EVIL. IT IS ANGER,

ENVY, JEALOUSY, SORROW,

REGRET, GREED, ARROGANCE,

SELF-PITY, GUILT, RESENTMENT,

INFERIORITY, LIES, FALSE PRIDE,

SUPERIORITY, AND EGO.

THE OTHER IS GOOD.

IT IS JOY, PEACE LOVE, HOPE SERENITY,

HUMILITY, KINDNESS, BENEVOLENCE,

EMPATHY, GENEROSITY,

TRUTH, COMPASSION AND FAITH.”

THE GRANDSON THOUGH ABOUT

IT FOR A MINUTE AND THEN ASKED

HIS GRANDFATHER:

“WHICH WOLF WINS?…”

THE OLD CHEROKEE SIMPLY REPLIED,

“THE ONE THAT YOU FEED”

Let’s read that last line again:

The one that you feed.

This hit me hard, because as a writer, I spend most of my time in my head, analyzing and re-working my words. And this idea of the wolf who wins is the one that you feed reminded me that if I continue to tell myself negative things, if I continue to put unnecessary pressure on myself to “be” XYZ kind of writer, then that will be the person and writer I am. 

So, think about what you tell yourself, and which wolf you feed.