Wow, it has been a long time since I’ve written! I’ve started so many blog posts, and then my overly full schedule or perfectionism (which both continue to top my list of “growth opportunities”) seem to constantly and effectively interfere. So, first and foremost – HELLO! And thank you for being here with me!
On Being Human
Today I wanted to share a bit about being human. Not in the existential context, but in the more common way we typically refer to “being human.” We often use the phrase “I’m only human” to describe when something doesn’t go quite how we hoped or expected.
Some people may abuse this phrase and use it for every perceived misstep or shortcoming. I’m not advocating for this, nor do I support excessive excuse making! What I’m referring to is the kinder, gentler, authentic use of being human in the spirit of owning your sh*t and either accepting it and letting it go, or coming up with a plan to address what didn’t go as planned.
Why Would I Go See A Therapist That Doesn’t Have His or Her Sh*t Together?
I have been referred to as Wonder Woman a time or twenty in my life. Mostly for my inner strength, courage and compassion (and maybe because I wear a ridiculous number of bracelets!). And as much as I absolutely adore her, and admit to having a few awesome Wonder Woman T-shirts, mugs, nightlights, socks and magnets…. I am NOT her. Not even close. I mean, let’s be honest – I don’t even look a thing like her!
People sometimes think that therapists have it all figured out! Newsflash – we don’t. While we are certainly trained to help our clients gain insight into their own lives with the hopes of improving aspects that aren’t going so hot, at the end of the day, we are most certainly flawed humans too. We communicate poorly and disrespectfully at times. We fight with our partners. We yell at our kids. We act immaturely. We experience anxiety. We feel depressed. We grieve. And we suck at dealing with life sometimes. And yes, we even see therapists! Just like everyone else.
I once asked my therapist (who refers many clients to me) this question, “When I share all of my crap with you, does it make you not want to refer clients to me?” She laughed and laughed and then said, “Oh Dear Jill!!, It actually makes me want to refer MORE clients to you. Because you are REAL and know how to connect with people from that place.” I love that lady!
Many of my past blog posts have been written with the intent of encouraging others in the areas of self-care, working less, asking for help, loving yourself, letting go of perfectionism and embracing good enough to name a few! One of my main hopes through writing and sharing in this space is to inspire openness, vulnerability, and to be real in a way that helps others not feel alone in the various struggles on this life journey.
So, here is MY “being human” update:
- Most popular phrase I heard in 2019: “Hey, I thought you were cutting BACK your work schedule?” Yes, I’ve improved it, but I still work too much. Coming from a family where both my mom and dad worked very hard to provide for our family and enjoy life (as well as grandparents on both sides of my family that did the same thing – yes, both of my grandmothers even worked), I swear it’s in my DNA. I sometimes feel like I don’t even know how to not work hard. But I’m going to continue to try and learn and grow more in this area.
- I’ve confessed to my monthly women’s writing group that I have started at least 10 blogs posts, and many of them are close to finished, but I haven’t published a thing since February of last year. Why? Well my goodness! When it’s been this long, I need to make sure my next post is worthy and meaningful and “perfect” and… NO. I. DON’T. While I like to refer to myself as a recovering perfectionist, clearly this is still a work in progress for me.
- I’ve asked for help! Sometimes it worked out pretty sweet. Other times, I wasn’t taken seriously (I mean, Wonder Woman does NOT need to ask for help, right?). And when it doesn’t work out, that just feeds the self-sufficiency voice inside my head that tells me I can’t ask for help because I’ll just be let down, or I don’t want to burden others (insert eye-roll emoji here).
- Self-Love – I’ve never been a rock-star at this, but admittedly I’m the President of its fan club! I tour around with it, write about it, and then continue to be hard on myself about all the things I’m NOT doing well (like not writing a blog post for a freaking year!).
- Self-Care – If responding to client emails while getting a pedicure, catching up with friends via phone while driving to a funeral or working in the evening from my patio count as self-care, I’ll take the win.
“Oh, I don’t think you’ve ever known a woman like me!” – Wonder Woman
As a solution-focused therapist, I say to myself, “So, what are you going to do about this?” Or better yet, what are WE, collectively as a group of imperfect humans going to do about all the things that didn’t go our way last year, that won’t go our way this year, and that may never go our way? Give up, sit in it, wallow, drink Kool-Aid from the “woe-is-me” frown-faced pitcher, come up with more excuses (even though they really ARE true!), get even busier to distract ourselves, or, keep working at it and be kind to ourselves along the way? I like the sound of the latter – a lot. Giving up is not an option for me. It never has been. And I don’t want it to be for you either.
They say self-awareness is the first step to change, and God knows I have a BOATLOAD of that, so there is hope for me after all! And today I forge ahead. I wrote this post rather quickly, sat on it way too long, still over-thought and over-edited it, and it’s just time to share again for crying out loud!! It is good enough for re-entry into my being human writing space (Jill – 1, Perfectionism – 0).
Cheers and thanks for hanging in there with me!
“It’s about what you believe. And I believe in love. Only love will truly save the world.” – Wonder Woman
Jill, aka, Wonder Woman