For most of my adult life I have been a socially aware individual; relatively well versed on societal and global issues such as homelessness, inequality, the refugee crisis, war, natural disasters and diseases which plague parts of the population. 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 needs, desires, worries and concerns.
I used to compare and contrast societal problems to my own life, and when comparing said issue(s) I would berate and tell myself that I had zero right to complain about my problems and worries.
Guilt would continuously circulate in my mind, and I would link to myself: 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 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 quiet knowing inside me that was shouting at me to change my life and to find my purpose. Inside I listened to the voice in my head that would say: You cannot do that… You cannot indulge such frivolities…don’t you know some people 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 challengers were 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 my YouTube video to hear how I learned to own, validate and reframe it.
You have a right to your feelings and story regardless of what others might be experiencing.
Remember that by validating and taking ownership of your story, you have the opportunity to re-define it.
Acknowledge the 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.
Furthermore, validate and accept the story of others – even if you cannot relate to or understand the story.
Key questions to ask yourself:
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