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Under somebody's thumb

By Mike Johnson

When I started writing, I believed I could only access my dreams through the approval of others.

To get published, I thought I had to convince editors to buy my work. So that’s what I did.

Before that, I worked jobs, believing I needed the approval of bosses to gain income and promotions. So that’s what I did.

Over time, I resented being under someone else’s thumb.

We tire of seeking the approvals of others to live the lives we imagine.

We’re irritated that others can’t see what is so vivid and obvious to us.

We chafe at being told no by people who don’t deserve to carry our pencil.

Some make peace with this captivity and shrink their dreams to fit that reality.

Others use that anger and frustration to figure out ways to break free.

It turns out we don’t need approval. FOR ANYTHING.

You can sell your own writing.

You can create or buy your own income streams.

You can directly live the life you imagine.

But you have to demand it.

From yourself.

The biggest thumb that holds most people down is the thumb of capitulation.

Only you can give approval to your own freedom.


Find more of Mike Johnson's writings at

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