What If What You Believe About Yourself Is a Lie?

Photo by kazuend on Unsplash

The other morning I did my usual morning meditation but chose a guided meditation on self-esteem. One of the questions asked was what is a negative view or thought we hold of ourselves? Typically these negative viewpoints/thoughts come from an experience, person or time in our childhood or adolescence. Right away, I knew what that negative thought was. We were told to think on it… to decide if we felt if it was true. To consider if we are ready to let that thought or view go, or if we are ready to consider that that thought we have about ourselves may be completely false.

I knew exactly from the moment it was asked what negative view I’ve held of myself for quite some time. I know exactly– or about where this thought originated from– or how it grew into a monstrous bad belief/self- view. As I meditated, I started to cry. I realized that for many, many, many years, I have held onto this thought or belief, including being surrounded by one or two people back in my past who confirmed this negative self-belief of mine.

It’s funny. We often don’t know why negative or bad people come into our lives, but I think it often stems from our own bad beliefs of ourselves. These negative people confirm our own bad thoughts about ourselves. The experience then “confirms” that we are indeed, bad or not good. We then continue to choose bad people who then repeatedly confirm these negative thoughts … these people then provide us with bad experiences and so we say, “Look! I told you. I am horrible. If I weren’t horrible, this wouldn’t have happened.”

This is why it is so key to have self-love and self-esteem. When we love ourselves and care for ourselves, we pick partners, people and friends in our lives who love us and care for us. I have noticed that since my divorce, I have chosen better people and better situations for myself because my self-esteem has improved. I am attracted to good people—and I spend my time with only good people. Good men and good women. I distance myself from people who don’t make me feel comfortable, and I spend time with people who make me feel happy and good. I am no longer attracted to “bad boys” as I was in my twenties, and I find good men– kind hearted folks, appealing.

Self-esteem really is everything. Ask yourself if what you believe about yourself is really true… or not.

Lovingly,

Laura

What If Nothing Is Really Worth It?

https://unsplash.com/@crawford

The other weekend, I found myself in the woods with someone I’ll call a friend as there is no real word to describe him. It was a beautiful day and a nice hike together.
Of course, I had a great and special time. It was a beautiful evening and late afternoon. But a few times as I walked an occasional muddy path, I thought back to a really horrible memory for me. At 14, I was basically taken advantage of by a 22 year old male. Thirty years later, I can still envision myself lying in the leaves that late summer evening. I can remember wanting it to stop.

This wasn’t the “Me Too” days. This was the “It’s My Fault” decade, where women and girls and men and boys alike all remained silent about these things.
I shook the memories off, and was able to fully enjoy the time with my friend who is at times, very creative and thoughtful with plans. This was a surprise trip and a thoughtful one at that. I wanted to go back with my friend and expressed it right away. We were hiking or walking mostly on a flat path amongst a garden and the woods. It was really special. It gave the woods a better definition for me— superseding those bad memories which have left a mark on my mind that will never go away. No one tells you that. That the memories never leave but the power they once had does— if you work on it.


Lately, I have felt a struggle to stay on an enlightened and positive path. I have made huge progress and gotten so far and I’m proud of that, but I keep falling and stumbling anyway, without fail. Perhaps it’s the isolation of COVID, or maybe it’s being a single parent for a long almost seven years, but I wonder if I have anything to offer. If anything I’m writing resonates or clicks within others. I wonder if I’m really connecting with people. I see myself hitting roadblocks and nothing I do seems to get me past them, despite the fact that I work very hard. If you know me, you know I’m a dedicated friend and partner and parent. That when I commit to something, anything— I really commit to it. That’s why I drive almost an hour to train weekly. Because I’m committed.

But I have to wonder if all my hard work is really getting me anywhere and if my writing really natters anymore. If I matter anymore. Maybe it’s best I just go dark and stop writing. Maybe I’m not really offering anything to anyone.
In the small of my mind where it is quiet and dim, I feel a real loss and feel directionless and hopeless at times.

Everyone feels stuck. Everyone feels darkness and hard times. The question I’m wondering is when it ends? And when does someone’s years of dedication and hard work really pay off? When do things pay off for me?

Maybe though me writing is not adding up to anything. Maybe there is nothing left to say because, nothing has changed for me. To develop, I need new experiences and I feel I’m not finding them. I feel defeated.

Peace and love is solely underestimated. To me, it’s the only things worth living for. Without peace of mind and love, life is worthless. Money can only carry someone so far.

love,

Laura

When Nothing Gets Easier & Everything Gets Harder, Even The Strong Need Support

ian-stauffer-uftqFbfWGFY-unsplash.jpg

Photo by Ian Stauffer on Unsplash

One of the hardest things about being the youngest of four kids with a large age gap between me and the other 3 kids, is that my parents are older and unable to support me and be there for me in the way I wish they could. I understand why they can’t though, especially with my mom’s health issues, but it is still hard. They root for me on the sidelines, but because they are dealing with a lot– I cannot at their age ask for too much. In fact, I try to give instead of take when it comes to them. They paid their dues in their eighties to be helped instead of burdened.

Still, it makes it really challenging– especially when going through a very hard situation knowing that they can’t physically be there for me.

Continue reading

6 Ways to Hide You’re Hurting When You Can’t Be Real

sami-hobbs-sjRxb92v7_k-unsplash.jpg

Photo by Sami Hobbs on Unsplash

It’s not easy keeping it together if you are feeling depressed or going through some serious life stuff. A biggest part of the challenge is hiding it.

Sure, maybe you have people you can come clean with, but for the most part, adult life is going through the motions without showing the “emotions”– unless you trust someone and let your guard down. I’m not saying you should fake it and not get help. If you are depressed, you should get help. But what I am saying, is sometimes you have to keep it together when you’re out in public or in a situation that demands privacy.

Here are some tips for keeping cool when really, you need a hug and a break.

1. Steer conversations towards other people

Avoid questions and have the person talk about him or herself. Most people like to do that!

2. Take time outs

Take a mental health day. Go for a walk. Hide out for a while and work in a different location in the office.

3. Say, “I’d rather not…”

Discuss it. When people ask if you are upset, you can decline talking– and find someone you trust to vent to.

4. Take a drive and cry

If your kids can’t see you cry or you just need to let it out, blast some music and cry a bit. Just watch the road.

5. Can say you’re fine

Not ready to talk to someone about your hurt feelings? Say you’re fine and wait for a time when you’re more composed.

6. Exercise, meditate or dance

Move. Move and mooove. Put your sadness or stress into the motions.

 

Chin up– hang tight– and hope for the best,

Laura

 

 

5 Things People May Think When Recovering From Abuse

_mxsh_-T9THJMIIMPM-unsplash

Photo by _Mxsh_ on Unsplash

When someone has gotten out of a traumatic situation, it’s very common to struggle with complex emotions and thoughts. More often than not, the abused will blame themselves for the abuser’s bad behavior, especially if the abuser was narcissistic.
1. Victims may retreat, lose/gain weight and feel depressed

It’s not unusual for victims of abuse to retreat from others out of shame, self-blame or desire to keep the abuse a secret.

Of course, it’s not the person’s fault and he or she shouldn’t be ashamed, but after being treated a certain way, it can be hard to not feel down about oneself.
Continue reading

3 Things to NOT Do When Supporting a Loved One After Abuse

If you have a friend, romantic partner or family member who has been physically, emotionally, verbally or financially abused, this person needs your support.

If you really care, these are something things you can avoid doing to make this person’s recovery better and smooth.

1. Don’t Avoid Talking About It 

If this person brings up the event or abuse, don’t dodge talking about it. Obviously it’s not the most fun topic to chat about, but  avoiding the topic is basically invalidating how the person feels. Talking about something like abuse is not easy so if the person gets the courage to discuss, let them talk. It takes a lot of courage.

 

Continue reading

5 Things to Do for a Partner Who Has Been Through Trauma

If you have been in a traumatic situation and are struggling to recover, rest assured: you are not the only person to have experienced this.

Trauma could be anything:

  • an accident
  • abuse
  • mugging
  • disastrous storm or natural event
  • rape
  • losing a loved one

Whatever the case, after enduring something traumatic, it can be hard without the right support. So, if you have a partner you love and are watching them struggle through something like this, here are 5 key things you can do to help your partner out.

Continue reading