So WordPress is asking me to share what’s on my mind… Hmmm. I guess the most prominent thing on my mind right now is how happy I am to have such a great little group of people who never fail to support me when I need them. I tend to be one of those people who has a hard time asking for help. Part of it is stubbornness and part is fear. Yes, fear and I have a very intimate relationship. But I’m working on replacing fear with the much more helpful, courage.
A friend had shared an image on the dreaded Facebook yesterday with a quote from BrenÃ© Brown – who I’d never heard – defining courage as:
- Asking for what you need
- Speaking your truth
- Owning your story
- Setting boundaries
- Reaching out for support
I have to admit that I do really well with speaking my truth and owning my story. The rest, not so much. I’ve gotten pretty good with asking for what I need with regard to my relationship with my wife. It took about 20 years but I figured out that she’s a terrible mind reader. Awful. It’s still hard at times but I force myself to tell her what I need or how I feel or if she’s doing something that is affecting me in a negative way. I’m not perfect at it but the more I do it, the more receptive she is, and the easier it gets. I wasted a lot of time and emotional energy being upset and hurt that TJ just didn’t care enough to work harder to make our relationship better. The truth was that she was mostly oblivious to my unhappiness with whatever I was unhappy about. The direct approach works best with her.
Setting boundaries is tough sometimes. I do enjoy helping people, particularly when I think I can do something better than anyone else involved. I’m not an egomaniac but I have a few things that I’m really good at and I like to share those skills with other folks. Unfortunately, I sometimes overextend myself and then wig out. I’m getting better about saying “no” but it’s hard.
That sort of ties in with the reaching out for support part. If I’ve committed to doing something, only situations of extreme over-committing or extreme stress will force me to reach out for help. And when it comes to emotional support, I generally won’t do that. Again, I’m getting better but it’s a struggle. First of all, I know myself very well and there’s not much anyone else could say to me that I don’t already have being said inside my head. I know it sometimes can help to have that validation but, usually, I know what my problem is and have to figure out how to deal with it. But there have been a few times over the past year or so when I’ve bitten the bullet and asked for support or a shoulderÂ from trusted friends. There’s always that risk of being blown off or having my problem minimized or belittled but I’ve been lucky and that’s not happened. Thank you to my dear friends! There aren’t many of you who I look to for support but, I gotta say, you’re the best.
So there you go, WordPress, that’s what was on my mind.