We all have doubts.
We all have setbacks. All of us.
We all have the “ugly cry” moments when we wonder why we even started down the path we’re on. Know this: you’re never alone, even when it looks as though you are.
“When you get into a tight place and everything goes against you, till it seems as though you could not hang on a minute longer, never give up then, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.”Â ~ Harriet Beecher Stowe
I’m not gonna lie, Dear Reader, this has been a weird week. Things that I thought would work out didn’t. People I had written off resurfaced. Opportunities that I didn’t know existed presented themselves. Worries that I had didn’t come to fruition. I lost someone close to me. Close friends (and staunch twitter followers) will know that I refer to days like these as a trip on “Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride.”Â
Lots of sifting. Lots of slogging. Not a lot of sleeping.
I even admitted to being needy. In public. Out loud. On the internetz (where everything is FORever). My life isn’t always sunshine, lollipops and rainbows. Two things have sustained me: faith in myself and the faith that my friends have in me.
Do you have a “cheerleader file?”Â I do. When my perspective is skewed by my doubt, I take the time to go through messages and mementos from people whose lives I have touched for the better. And those who have made my life richer for having known them.
These saved messages remind me that I matter. That what I do makes a difference. Those messages are from people who see the best in me and remind me of my better nature when I’ve sometimes forgotten. They reinforce the idea that I have a chance to become the person I’m capable of becoming, and isn’t that what we strive for in our quest for independence and autonomy?
Coming into the fruition of who we can be – our highest selves – is a scary and sacred journey. Thank goodness we don’t have to go it alone.
“Most of us, swimming against the tides of trouble the world knows nothing about, need only a bit of praise or encouragement – and we will make the goal.”Â ~Jerome Fleishman
A way to get yourself out of a mental slump? This is going to sound counter intuitive, but I’m going to ask you to shift the focus from yourself and pay attention to the troubles of people around you.
For example, when you go through the checkout line at the grocery store, pay attention to the gestures and facial expression of the person wearing the name tag across the counter. He or she may have $15 to last through the end of the week. She may be worried about a goof up she just made at work. He may have just heard that his mom was diagnosed with cancer…. or she may be working her way through school and still have to study when her shift ends.
Take a moment, look them square in the eye and compliment them. A sincere one. Do this for one solid day with everyone you meet: cabbies, bosses, peers, children. Then reflect on the way you feel when you go to sleep that night. Write it down or otherwise record it.
Try it again for the remainder of the week. Watch magical things happen in your life. This isn’t woo-woo karma voo doo. This is physics. Ripples are ripples, even if they are invisible. Just because I can’t see electricity doesn’t mean that I can’t see its effects.
Also, take a moment to thank your cheerleaders. They probably don’t expect thanks, but that doesn’t mean that they won’t appreciate being noticed. I’d be interested in hearing your responses to how this experiment worked for you. Please send an email to me at wwithdr1ve (at) gmail (dot) com with your results. When has someone’s faith in you changed your life for the better?
Remember, we’re all in this together.
Molly Cantrell-Kraig is a woman with drive. Possessing an innate sense of purpose and a pragmatic, solution-based approach to empowering people, she fused these two traits in order to establish Women With Drive Foundation. Based upon its founder’s personal history, Women With Drive Foundation is a means through which Cantrell-Kraig may effect change on both a micro and macro level. By providing women with something as essential as personal transportation in order to transition them from poverty to prosperity, she, through Women With Drive Foundation, seeks to empower women to help them help themselves. Through this action, the individual applicant benefits, as does society as a whole. Follow Molly on twitter as @mckra1g or @WWDr1ve (Women With Drive)