At ten blog posts behind me, it’s time I introduce myself & tell you why I started writing this blog.
You & I are going on a road trip – Buckle Up for a sometimes Rough, Rutted & (you know me) Always Real, Ride…
1. I WRITE THIS BLOG TO CREATE COMMUNITY.
FIRST STOP: COMMUNITY. GATHER A TRIBE OF FELLOW SUFFERERS WITH ANXIETY, WORRY, OR DEPRESSION WHO CAN FIND OUT THAT THEY ARE NOT ALONE.
Community is the BIG reason I’m writing this blog & the most painful one I had to navigate.
Before this point in my life, I was mentally fraying at the edges & fighting to make a better internal life for myself. To that end, years ago, I had made a Things-To-Do-To-Get-Healthier list.
For reasons you’ll see later, forging community was dead last on that list, yet it’s the piece that tied it all together. Community was the final bit that got me to more consistent healthy thoughts & living a life that I dictate, not everyone else dictating to me.
WHAT COMMUNITY MEANS:
1. LEARNING TO TRUST other people enough to show them the sides of me I had never shown anyone & trusting that they would accept me because of it.
Sharing how I feel with other people has been the most terrifying & eye-opening experience I’ve ever had. I thought showing people the mess within me would push them away. But, instead, it brought them toward me.
We are all FAR MORE SIMILAR THAN WE ARE DIFFERENT. Thus, every person I opened up to told me a story that was eerily like mine. When you share openly, people draw closer to you because they can relate to you.
2. ASKING WHAT YOU CAN CONTRIBUTE. We grow more when we are invested in ourselves AND when we invest in the growth of other people. Not only sharing what we’ve learned but asking what we can contribute takes our own growth & healing to a deeper, more connected level.
The way to reach mastery at any new skill is to teach it to others. Being involved in the healing & support of other people is a boost to our skillset & therefore our confidence.
As a social being, no matter how un-social you may feel, we HEAL, GROW & DO BETTER when we also give to another being.
3. FREEDOM. When you realize you are not alone, you lose the tendency to hide your voice as often. You begin to trust, even with new people, that they will relate to you too. (sometimes they don’t, that’s ok too…)
4. SHARING YOUR STORIES GIVES OTHER PEOPLE FREEDOM. You can see the change on someone’s face when you share your story with them. It’s like a 1,000-tonne weight is suddenly lifted off of their shoulders.
They aren’t alone anymore. There is a huge sense of relief when we hear that someone else is feeling or experiencing what they have.
Someone else is speaking the words they have been DYING TO SAY. Suddenly, there is someone else, for both of us, who feels like we do!
That’s Community to me.
Maybe more of you think you are the only ones dealing with your anxiety, distorted thinking, depression, or chronic stress and worry.
I hope this blog can help you see that you are not alone & bring us together.
2. FACE MY FEAR
Second Stop: FEAR. I mean mind-numbing, on the daily fear.
yeah, coaches & therapists are people who have fear & anxiety too.
You don’t get to a certain place in your life where anxiety goes away. My struggle with fear & anxiety is monumentally smaller than it used to be. But it isn’t removed.
Even if you have a tonne of training in mental wellness, anxiety doesn’t leave; you just get better at regulating it. So I teach you more about the positive ways you can face your fears here: How To Face Your Fears & Build Resilience.
In terms of fears, Covid deserves some credit in the writing of this blog. However, since Covid started, I couldn’t help but notice how many people were suddenly acting like I used to feel (at one point in my life) on the daily:
- Afraid to go outside.
- Afraid to get together with people.
- Questioning every decision.
- On high alert.
- Keeping on a mask & afraid to take it down.
- Anxious that something, somewhere, will go terribly, irreversibly, catastrophically wrong pretty much half of every day…
I mean, how many people do I know, including myself, who felt like this BEFORE Covid?!
All that is to say; there was a time that I remember feeling happy when it was raining because I could justify to myself that I didn’t have to go outside, but it seems, I have a bigger tribe who’s talking about things like that with me now – with that in mind, I move to #3:
3. I WRITE A BLOG TO EXPRESS MY ACKNOWLEDGEMENT, GRATITUDE & ENCOURAGEMENT.
People have hit their uncertainty limit. They are done with the not-knowing that the past 1 & 1/2 years of experiencing Covid has offered up & therefore, people are beginning to ditch reaction & take on reflection.
Here’s where I see, hear & am SO grateful for:
a. More Emotions
I hear more honest conversations right now. I hear more feeling content & less intellectual content from people. Covid has opened up access to their emotional world for many people that they had perhaps shut themselves off from before the pandemic.
I hear more emotional textures in people’s language. More reflection in their tone. It seems like a bigger tribe is feeling more than they have before.
b. More Sharing & Talking
People are talking about how afraid they’ve been of venturing outside. But, unfortunately, this has led to the discovery of how scary it has been for them to venture INside (their own hurt) as well.
They’re discovering & talking about the hurt they’ve experienced.
They are talking about looking for love & being rejected by their parents, their spouses, their children, their friends… Because more people are talking, we are more willing to share our hurts because we hear others share that hurt alongside us.
c. Increased Willingness To Learn New Things About Ourselves:
Some people have just realized who they are & their community is changing as a result.
They may have thought their feelings meant something was wrong with them. But they realize now that they are not broken. There isn’t anything wrong with them; they weren’t taught how to give & receive love from the people tasked with that responsibility when they were young.
They are learning they didn’t let themselves down; now they realize that they were let down by someone else & they are learning that they have to teach themselves now.
My Hope? I, therefore, encourage people to continue accepting emotions, sharing their truths & embracing self-reflection.
I don’t want anyone to stay in their pain, but I don’t want them to stop talking about & owning their own stories. A part of me is selfishly & preemptively sad/worried about it all going back to how it was when people weren’t talking about what really matters.
Is there a way to get rid of the virus but keep all of the deep reflection, personal dismantling & honesty about how we feel from day-to-day intact?
Thus, reason #3 for why I write a blog: ENCOURAGE US TO CONTINUE TO HAVE HONEST CONVERSATIONS.
I’m Meg Ryan in You’ve Got Mail: sitting at my typewriter, writing a blog – releasing this letter into the dear void & hoping you will resonate with it, write me back & say those golden words:
If you aren’t having real conversations or realizations…get into my ENCOURAGEMENT CIRCLE
– I share my personal blunders, fumbles & wins to help spark your new thoughts.
– I’ll rally around you & inspire you to move to where you want to be by offering up options where you may not have seen them before.
Download my free training here: Unravel Your Negative Thoughts & get access to The Encouragement Circle. I look forward to greeting you there.💛