Reminder: you are enough.

Dear Self,

You really ought to be nicer to yourself more often. Take a look at yourself in the mirror and remember that you are the glue holding this together. Remind yourself of your intelligence, of your humour, of your good moments and your strengths. Because you have them all in stride.

You really ought to remember what you’ve been through in your life, not as a negative, but as a positive. You did it. You survived. You got stronger. You made it through that and you can make it through this. Nothing in this world is insurmountable so long as you believe in yourself and your capabilities.

Also, you really ought to quit with the excuses. Exercise is good for you, so stop finding reasons to not go. Eating healthy keeps your body properly functioning, so stop eating crap. Your well being is what is most important, so don’t ever deny help when it’s offered, or when you need it. We all need help sometimes. Your family loves you, so stop avoiding them and your friends want what’s best for you, so let them know you appreciate them.

Self, I wish you could know how great you are. I wish you could quit thinking poorly about yourself and direct some of those compliments you like to give to others towards yourself once in a while.

Don’t ever try to hide who you are. Don’t lower your standards, don’t dull your shine. Don’t think that you’re too much or you’re not enough because who you are is good enough. Good enough for you, good enough for friends, good enough for family. Those that love you love you just the way that you are. And the great thing about being human is that good enough can always get better, so long as you believe in yourself.

You’re talented. You’re insightful. You’ve got a way with words that you really ought to start using more often. You’re open-minded, you believe the better in people and yet somehow you don’t believe the better of yourself. You really ought to change that.

Promise me self, in the latter half of this year, I want you to be better. I want you to think smarter and stop putting yourself down. I want you to see the good in yourself and make a conscious effort to smile every day. Because you deserve to smile… even on the crappy days. Nothing in this life is perfect, but that doesn’t mean you can’t find a bright spot.

You are enough. Love yourself, please. Love everything about yourself. You’re this way for a reason so it’s time you start appreciating that and understanding that you are enough.

The Good Folks

You know those people in your life that just make you better? Goodness, I am so thankful for them.

Without even trying it’s like they just completely understand you, they appreciate you for exactly who you are and they bring out the best in you. They want to see you succeed and they do all that they can to help you get there. They’re the best kind of people in this world.

They’re also a rarity. They’re hard to find and easy to lose, so when you do find those people you hold on for dear-life, knowing the good that they spread is just the kind of good you need in your world.

I have a few of those people in my life. Those people whether I’ve known them 15 years or 1 year, it feels like I’ve known them forever. I admire them. I adore them. I dream of being like them and I hope that I can do for them even a fraction of what they do for me.

But the good folks, they don’t care about that. Because they don’t help you to ask for, or expecting anything in return. They don’t want reciprocation. They’re just that good. They pass along their goodness like a light to your life and to everyone’s lives that they touch, just because. Because that’s who they are and that’s what they bring to this world.

I got a phone call this morning and it wasn’t a request, it was just to talk. He knew that I wasn’t in a happy space and he just wanted to talk. He wanted to make it better, to make me feel better. And I can’t even stress enough how much it helps when someone calls just to say hey. So few times in life do people reach out just to reach out. More often then not, they’re reaching out because they want something.

If you have someone in your life who calls to just talk… remember that. Remember them. The good people in this world, they’re hard to find. If you’re lucky enough to find them, hold on for dear life! They’re worth it. I promise they’re worth it.

Some people, they just make your life better. They make you better. That’s what I want to be for someone. That’s who I strive to be.

Today was a good day. Today I am grateful.

A dear friend of mine, Ashok, recently told me that I should end each day by saying ‘Today was a good day, today I am grateful’.

I’m trying to take his advice to heart, knowing that if I start believing the better, I’ll start seeing the better. I’ve always been someone who’s had a hard time getting past the negatives in a day. But I’m making changes. I’m trying to remind myself the good is more important, and that I need to stop and pay more attention to it when it comes.

Today was a beautiful summer day. In what’s a seemingly rare occasion around here this season, the sun was shining… all day long, the birds chirped, the world (at least my corner of it) was peaceful. Anxiety will always be a part of me, but that doesn’t mean it has to be the largest part. Today, my anxiety did not win.

“Your value is not your current circumstance.”

I went to see my Therapist today. Let me just say, she’s wonderful.

One of the biggest takeaways that came from today’s session was the fact that I’m someone who correlates my value to my present circumstance.

I’m in a shitty place in my life right now. I am. I don’t avoid that fact at all. I’m unemployed, I don’t get along with my parents, my family and most people around me. Not for lack of trying, mostly for the fact that my beliefs and outlook towards the world are vastly different than those which I was raised with.

I know that I’m an intelligent, competent, qualified person. I know that I have a pleasant personality, that I’m loyal and I giving of kindness, compassion and love. I don’t see those things though. I see consistent rejection. I see consistent disappointment. I see myself consistently falling short, whether it’s my fault or not… I always find myself blaming… myself.

I don’t think I’m alone in this. I think no matter who you are or what your situation is, a lot of people correlate their value to their situation. And a lot of people wind up in bad situations at one time or another in their life. After all, we’re all only human.

It’s something that I struggle with. I need to be better at accepting rejection. Because this is my present situation and even though it’s my present situation, it’s not my value. Even if they reject me, I’m still intelligent, competent, qualified, pleasant, loyal, kind and compassionate. I’m still all of those things. But when I consistently find myself getting rejected, I consistently find myself believing I’m being rejected because I’m flawed. Because I’m a problem, because I’m a loser. Because there’s something wrong with me. There’s always something wrong with me.

I’m not saying that I’m perfect. Because I’m definitely not. But I could be a fucking incredible addition to any office, and all of these rejections do not have anything to do with the value that I bring to this world.

I need to do a better job at talking myself up. I need to do a better job at remembering that if they don’t hire me that’s their loss, not mine.

My therapist, the sweet and wonderful human being that she is, said ‘I think you’re too big for this town. I really do. In the limited time that I’ve known you I’ve come to realize the sheer capacity you have to change people, and to make them better.’ And honestly, hearing it come from her was a huge boost to my self-esteem. Then she went on to say ‘I wish you would take that power you have to change others and use it to instill change within yourself. It’s time you start believing in yourself.’

After I left her office I went to watch my nephew play hockey. There’s no reception in the arena(it’s basically a giant cement cave) so I had a few missed calls when I got out of the arena. One of the voicemails was from my Therapist. She’d gone online and looked up positions pertaining to my skills/experience and called to tell me the positions that she found that she believes I should apply for. How amazing is that? She went looking for potential jobs for me!

I need to do a better job with rejection.

I need to remember my value. In 2019, dealing with this shit storm has made it so easy for me to believe less of myself and diminish my value. I’m not any less of a person than I’ve ever been and I need to start remembering that.

Circumstances don’t define me. It’s just a temporary stop on a journey to where I need to be, where I belong and where I’m happy with what I truly deserve.

Grow through what you go through.

Growing up, there wasn’t a ton of money to go around my house. With a boatload of kids, living in one of the most expensive cities in Canada, my parents had every penny counted towards something two days prior to pay day arriving.

There were times when things got really bad. And yes, I know I am not the only one on earth who can say this. I was not alone in what I went through. And a lot of what I went through, kids are going through right now.

On more than one occasion, my brother’s and I went out on our bikes after dark to collect bottles from around the neighbourhood so that my mom could return them to the grocery store in hopes of getting $10 for gas money. That $10 would quite literally be the difference between my dad being able to drive to work and my dad hitchhiking to work. And since my parents always did everything within their power to make sure their children were looked after, as kids, we did everything in our power to make sure our parents were looked after.

I’ve learned a lot of lessons from my past. While I am a firm believer that our pasts don’t define us, I also believe that our past does teach us a lot if we’re willing to learn from it.

Me, I know A LOT about how to stretch a dollar. I’m exceptionally good with my money. And, though it does worry me at times (as I’m sure it does with everyone on earth unless you’re Bill Gates), I recognize that my upbringing taught me a lot about how to stay calm in times of financial struggle or monetary crisis.

Everyone on this earth has been through something difficult in their life. EVERYONE. What I’ve noticed though is some people seem doomed to make the same mistakes over and over. They’re not willing to learn from what they’ve been through.

I think that one of the best things you can do for your development and growth as a human is to learn from the circumstances that have made you. Grow through what you go through; learn from what you’ve been through. If you truly want to better yourself, to let your past make you better and your present make you stronger, then learn your lessons. Take the shittiest things that have ever happened to you and ask yourself how you can make sure that never happens again. Remember the hard times and ask yourself what you learned from them. I guarantee you, even if it’s not top of mind, you learned something from these times.

If you’ve been through hard times, if you’re going through hard times, ask yourself what you can take from the difficult and the struggle. Ask yourself how it’s going to make you better. Grow through what you go through. It sounds cliche but you’re braver than you think, stronger than you know and smarter than you believe.

I’m trying to be nicer to myself.

Being my own worst critic, I’m finally starting to realize that being mean to myself for all of my faults probably isn’t helping me get better, it’s just sending me farther into the darkness. I have faults… but I need to learn how to learn from that, not make myself feel worse for that.

My goal for this week is to be nicer to myself. Honestly, I think we could all benefit from being a little nicer to ourselves. But I’m going to start with me.

I’m trying.

Today, I’m trying to be positive. I’m trying to see the good things in my life. I’m trying to appreciate what is for what it is and to accept what isn’t for what it isn’t.

Today, I’m trying to smile… not because I have to, but because I’m appreciative. I’m trying to be appreciative. I’m trying to believe that something better is coming, that one day I’ll look back on this time and thank god that I didn’t give up. I’m trying to believe there’s more out there for me. I’m trying to believe that one day, hopefully soon, someone will see me for who I really am and believe that I an make their world, their life, their office, their inner-circle better.

I’m trying to be thankful – both for what I have and for what I’ve left behind. I’m trying to tell myself the bridges I burnt were done so that I don’t ever try to go back, because I’m trying to remind myself that there’s no point in reliving the past. The past is the past for a reason… it needs to stay there.

Today I’m trying to be hopeful. Hopeful for health, for happiness and for the ability to lead a life that leaves me fulfilled and content. Today, I’m also trying to be grateful for what I have, recognizing the positives and also, recognizing that I am who I am for a reason.

Don’t ever change yourself for someone else, that’s what they say. I’m not sure who ‘they’ are, but I understand they’re very wise. So, it is because of them that I’m trying to be proud of who I am. I’m trying to believe in myself and diminish the voice of my insecurities.

Each day brings a new opportunity to make it better than the last, to be better, act smarter and to try. And today, I’m trying.

Oh boy, I am trying.