As ‘life’ seems to happen around us, many people like to compare stories or talk about the issues. However, there is no comparisons between your story and theirs.
Of course we are all connected and as humans, we can all FEEL empathy or sympathy depending on our similar incidents.
But…everyone has moments of being depressed, sad, hurt, lost and disappointed. I can remember the day, my son explained that pointing out all the reasons someone should be grateful, isn’t always the best feeling emotion for someone suffering. I questioned why or why not, it always seemed to work for me. Highlighting all the reasons I should be grateful, how blessed I am and so on.
Nick explained how sometimes those comments are more detrimental to the person.
That was several years ago and to be completely honest, I didn’t truly understand.
Now, I do!
You see we ALL have moments where life feels overwhelming, too much and disappointing. Those who their stories, are well known and inspire others, but also you and me.
As I wrote and rewrote my speech for the area contest @Earlybirdstoastmasterskc, the days seemed to be zooming by. Closer and closer, my excitement was building and the anticipation of all the exciting opportunities, this club has to offer, was assisting me in working up the best message, I had ever written! Ohhh, if you could only feel my radiating excitement.
Yet, day by day in LA we had to jump one hurdle and then twenty five more or maybe a hundred more! (Okay I am being a bit over dramatic, as Ashby says).
But it is true. I could whine and cry about every little speed bump thrown in front of us, but where would we be then? Instead let me share what I have learned.
This week I had to let go of my first speech competition. It was to be on Monday February 5th. There were no guarantees I would move on to the next level, because our club has intense competition, but I wanted to attempt it, in the worst kind of way!
I had prepared and practiced the entire road trip from Kansas to LA.
As the hurdles popped up, some one at a time, others it seemed like fifty at a time, I began to realize my excitement was about to he turned into disappointment! With all the issues about having Princeton, I quickly realized my trip would be delayed, forcing me to step down from the competition.
Now this may seem silly to anyone else, but I cried and cried! I was disappointed, sad, overwhelmed and a little bit selfish. Most of all I was torn! This was my baby girl and very dear to me granddog. But I also wanted to attempt this competition!
Then my lessons began!!! Everytime I would express my disappointing emotions someone would share on Facebook or tell me about a horrific event. For example in the past month we have lost loved ones to accidents, cancer, flu and suicides. I would cry for them or add to my prayer list.
Yes, my silly little issues seemed trivial after all of that. I have so much to be grateful for, I know that.
Then I realized Nick was correct. Pointing out or minimizing our own disappointments, by comparison, is not fair, to you.
My epiphany was EVERYONE, experiences their own depression and disappointments. And YOURS is just as important as the next one. Because we are all on our own journey and life happens whether we are striving to improve or not.
And MAYBE, JUST MAYBE…this is a key to helping others choose to feel all the emotions, yet not give up.
The key is to allow yourself to feel the negative emotion. Express your feelings of disappointment. (Allow this moment). Do not worry about feeling trivial compared to other people’s issues. I am Not saying dwell on it and/or illuminate the situation, but rather, ALLOW yourself to have a moment of tears.
It is okay!!! There is no greater and less than, when it comes to you and how you feel. Maybe if we begin to allow kids and adults to say, “I feel like giving up.”
We will have less severely depressed or suicides. When I was having a moment of ‘selfish disappointments’ it felt good to allow the sadness, for a moment. It forced me to find solutions, it allowed me to be human, and it reminded me how quickly ANYONE can give up.
It is time we begin to allow our younger generations to know we have all been there. We have all had struggles and let it out. All of it! Say it if you feel it. It’s okay.
No matter how trivial it may be to others. Your disappointments, moments of sadness or maybe your losses are not comparable to others! You are allowed to say it because believe it or not… EVERYONE experiences negative emotions.
My greatest hope is…this post will help one person to choose life. If you are not feeling so well about something, say it! And quit worrying about comparing apples, arangatans, and kale spinach. This is YOUR EXPERIENCE! No one elses!