2020 was supposed to be my year. I turn 30, and like many, I had a lot of goals to accomplish before the big day.
My personal and professional goals felt attainable, like I could master the art of adulting. After years of unemployment and experiencing under-employment, I had finally advanced into a meaningful career. I went from driving Uber and Lyft, putting thousands of miles on my car, to managing the global social media channels for an international development company. As a mom of one, I prided myself on my ability to pivot and use every opportunity to advance my skills and grow my network. Anything that I focused on materialized in the physical world.
I understood that it was not enough to write my visions down - I had to take action. For every job rejection, moments of losing hope, and tears in the shower, I continued to move forward. My conversations with God were my saving grace, offering me refuge when I got in my way. Then the pandemic happened, and my anxiety settled in. What would become of this year? Would I make it through gainfully employed? More importantly, alive and well? I wasn't prepared for this change. I'm tired.
I'm tired of fighting an uphill battle. I'm tired of being the primary caregiver. I'm tired of always trying to be the best version of myself. I'm tired of homeschooling. I'm tired of the news. I'm tired of hearing about death. I'm tired of reports predicting when the quarantine is over. I'm tired of feeling like I'm not enough. I'm tired, period.
I'm not OK, but I'll be all right. The more I'm truthful I am with myself, the easier it is for me to heal.
Many of us have been conditioned to avoid our emotions. Sugarcoating our emotions only promotes avoidance and denial; this does nothing to help us resolve those feelings. Emotional stress, like that from blocked emotions, has not only been linked to mental illness but also physical problems like heart disease, intestinal problems, headaches, insomnia and autoimmune disorders. When we take ownership of our emotions, we strengthen our ability to respond to them, wisely and effectively. By not doing so, we leave ourselves open to imploding under pressure. When we treat all of our emotions with compassion, then we give ourselves grace; this gives us the kindness we often deserve.
As a life coach, I find writing down my feelings helpful. 1) It allows me to understand them more clearly. 2) It helps me get the thoughts out of my head. These actions can help you gain control of your emotions and improve your mental health. When processing how you feel, start from within to make sure you're OK. If you're not, that's fine too. Pay homage to your feelings and then release them. If you're tired, like I am, try the following affirmations to lift your spirits:
- I am on the path of expansion, always learning. I respect the process even when I do not understand it.
- I let go of defensiveness and choose to fill my world with joy and kindness instead.
- I am letting go of all my worries and fears.
- I am supported and loved during this process.
- I am willing to be easy on myself.
- I deserve a peaceful and loving life.
- I know that peace is possible.
- I am healthy, happy and radiant.
- Peaceful energy is radiating out from around me.
- Today I choose joy.
The truth is, we don't know when this pandemic will end; this could be our new normal. While I'm sad this may not be the year that I planned, I know bigger and better things are on the way. What we do know is that we'll be more resilient than ever. Globally, we've already adapted the way we move, work, and play. Instead of focusing on what we lack from being outdoors, let's put the focus on healing ourselves. We must do whatever we need to do to thrive.
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