Whew. November is here. Halfway gone as of writing, actually. That means of course that 2021 is coming to an end, and what a year it’s been! I have found myself almost apologizing for having such a stellar 2020, when so many had a totally crappy last year. For me, my craptastic year was 2021, or has been. Everything that was great about 2020: working on home renovations with my then-fiance, selling our homes, buying our new home, nesting, blending our families, my business growing 400%, lots of connections with powerful business leaders, my wedding, my honeymoon, gorgeous holiday season. And much more!
Everything that has sucked about 2021: not having time to finish home projects, spending all extra money on lawyers to fight a spiteful woman, my stepdaughter’s learning disabilities (completely being ignored by her mother, naturally), not having time to devote to further growth of my business, having COVID quarantine twice, getting zero cooperation from other households for our family, time with my new husband shot because we had to respond to court/lawyers, Spring Break trip to San Antonio was extremely stressful for myriad reasons, our summer family trip was cut short due to lack of time together, problematic colleague issues, infiltration of my livelihood, and I spent most of the summer and fall seasons almost completely “checked out”.
So what has changed to turn this year around? Short answer: my attitude.
Because, let me be candid and vulnerable here (as usual)…we ALL have our issues, we ALL sometimes get in our head and in our own way, and we ALL have bouts of self-destructive behaviors and thoughts. I know of absolutely nobody who is perfect, or who never makes mistakes, or who spends all day every day with a sunny disposition. Yet, even knowing that I am no exception to the rule, I spent months beating myself up for every single negative thing that happened to me or around me, as if I thought I was bulletproof, as if I suddenly became entitled. Like, how dare I have a bad thing happen to me? Haven’t I shielded myself against bullshit? Whyyyyyyy me?!
I had to check myself. Life is full of ups and downs, like a rollercoaster. We can’t experience the highs if there aren’t any lows or plateaus. 2020 was just so chock full of joy and love, 2021 fell upon me like a cloak of disaster. This year I have had successful sessions with clients for: self-esteem/confidence, business/abundance blocks, past-life regression, childhood trauma, sexual trauma, PTSD, phobias/fears, weight issues, motivation, alcohol/nicotine/drugs/porn/gambling addictions, health issues/physical conditions, anxiety, depression, stress, romantic blocks, communication, and life purpose, just off the top of my head. I counseled all of these people through some really dramatic life events that caused them issues in myriad ways. Almost every time I found myself giving people advice, or repeating what I know to be true, I felt like I fraud. Yep. That nasty ol’ Imposter Syndrome reared its ugly head. It was a doozy!
Why? Because I wasn’t taking my own advice. Who can relate? We can easily see through people’s problems and guide them towards a solution, but when it comes to our own life, why is it so difficult to apply the same information to our own situations? I know I’m certainly not alone, but that doesn’t give me any comfort. Regardless, I let myself spend several months wallowing in self-pity. How did this manifest? I was irritable with my family. I isolated myself from my friends on occasion. I’d often wake up and decide whether I was fit to work or I’d reschedule appointments and stream shows all day. I started finding things to be resentful about (managing my household w/out much support, my family’s growing list of demands and issues, my husband’s naps, envious people attempting to destroy my happiness, wishy-washy and milquetoast people, etc.). I’d take my bad attitude and I’d exacerbate it by drinking booze, earlier and earlier in the day, until I found myself passing out early, waking up in the middle of the night unable to go back to sleep, being exhausted and pissy during the day; rinse and repeat.
I had friends I respect incredibly much tell me over and over to stop being stupid. “You know better”. Pointing out that I was ALLOWING negative energy to absorb and take over, rather than trying to block it with light and love. All I was feeling was brought on by no one other than myself, because I decided to take that on. It’s so difficult to hear “You are the problem.” Ouch.
And I wondered why I couldn’t “pivot” when I caught myself thinking negatively, or saying negative words, or being in that space at all for more than a few minutes. Why could I not cope in healthy ways, like extra self-care, leaning on my husband without feeling like a huge burden, or exercising? I did none of these things. In fact, when I wanted to do something for myself I’d often talk myself out of it (don’t have enough time/extra funds/that’s selfish). When my husband said, “let me carry you” I dug my heels in and felt even more sorry for myself, because this isn’t what he signed up for (my demon thoughts). I stopped exercising and started lying down more, and I gained weight because of my laziness (and alcohol adds up a lot of empty calories!) I just couldn’t snap out of it.
So I had a Come to Jesus moment with myself where I realized I have to give out more GRACE – to myself and everyone around me, because don’t we all need a little more grace in our lives? So I accepted that I was going through a lull, and I stopped degrading myself for it. I started showing more compassion to my loved ones. I began with baby steps – there, you got out of bed and started work on time; there, you didn’t pour a drink until after dinner; there, you went to that meeting you tried to make excuses for not attending. One foot in front of the other. Until I found that I was sick and tired of being in that dark place, and I was READY to come out of that hole. See, you have to be ready; you have to ride the crest until it’s safe to land. And if it took me many months to wade out in the depths, then that’s gonna have to be OK. The point is, I was prepared to do the work to brush that dirt off my shoulders.
So that’s really my advice to anyone who ever finds themselves in this kind of self-deprecating mess. It starts with a decision. Sometimes it is a simple decision of being so damn sick of not feeling like yourself to inspire change. Whatever it takes! I just really love that we all share this human experience, and none of us are exempt from the lulls and dips in life. So we can share and relate with each other, be there for each other, and move forward, together. If you need some help moving past your own personal blockades, then reach out. To friends, family, or a trusted therapist. You can certainly call me and I’ll help you pick yourself up and dust those shoulders off!