For most of my adult life I have been a socially aware individual; relatively well versed on society and world issues such as homelessness, the refugee crisis, war and global health endemics. One of my passions is politics and what makes society work or not work as a whole and as such I have spent much of my life reading and watching documentaries on various global matters.
Unfortunately, up until a few years ago this passion led me to invalidate my own story.
I used to compare and contrast society problems to my own life and when comparing said issue(s) I would think to myself that I had zero right to complain about my own problems and worries. Guilt from my Catholic school days constantly circulated in my mind… there are starving children in Africa… there are people far worse off than you… you have a roof over your head and food in your tummy… do you really think you are that special? Get over yourself!
Because I kept telling myself that I was fortunate, I invalidated and did not give credence to my own distresses. I discounted the voice in my head that was shouting at me to change my life and to find my purpose. I cannot do that… I cannot indulge such frivolities…don’t you know there are people who would love to have this job/make the money you do…you are lucky…
Eventually the anxiety and subsequent depression that I fell into forced me to start listening to my inner wisdom and necessitated that I validate my own story. I become aware that just because my situation did not compare to someone else’s did not mean that my story was invalid and unworthy. And, as I began to validate my own story, I came to own it, and by owning it I was able to set myself free and make the necessary changes to build a new chapter in my life.
Watch this week’s Youtube video to hear how I learned to own my story, validate and reframe it.
Remember that by validating and taking ownership of your story you have the opportunity to re-define your story.
Acknowledge obstacles that you have overcome. We all have a story.
Where you are at today does not define you – you have a choice to stagnate in your existing story or you can write new chapters and build an enhanced story.
Furthermore, validate and accept the story of others – even if you cannot relate to or understand the story.
Key questions to ask yourself: