Bills and money and trades, oh my!

I woke up Monday feeling off. My shoulders were tight and heavy. My breath was short and shallow. My thoughts were crammed in my head causing me anxiety. The past me would have had a mental breakdown with all of this. I would have gone into hyper mode and I would have lost it. (Just ask Josh.)

I am proud to say that I reached out to a couple of friends and my sister. I was honest about what is going on in my life and asked for their presence. All I wanted was an ear, but I got much more than that. It turns out that they were feeling the exact same way, but for their own reasons.

Because I gave myself the space to be vulnerable, I was able to laugh off some of the tension and have a better week. By being vulnerable and honest about how overwhelmed I was feeling, I learned that I am not alone. Alone in what? In this thing called life.

In reaching out for help, I learned that we are all feeling overwhelmed. We’re all battling something, whether it’s something big or small. So, with that being said, I want to congratulate us for making it through another week! Yes, us.

For me, making it through another week means having enough to pay the week’s bills with the money we are able to bring in while using our skills to trade for other needs.* Hence, the title. Notice how none of my weekly ‘accomplishments’ sound extravagant. To me, this is the definition of “being grateful for the small things.” (A Negative Nancy might put it as barely getting by.) I’m curious to see what making it through a week looks like for you. (If you’d like to share, I’d love to read what your weekly, or even daily, accomplishments are.) It seems that people like to know that they aren’t alone, so in sharing, you might actually be helping someone who needs the help.

I often joke that I feel better when I hear that other people are miserable too. Honestly, I don’t want to be the only overwhelmed one while everyone else “has their s-h-i-t together”. I don’t want to be left behind. No one likes to feel left out. In sharing my experiences and vulnerabilities, I intend to not make anyone feel left behind. Isn’t it better together anyways?

Now that I am conscious about how important it is to be vulnerable, I hope to show you it’s alright for you to be vulnerable too.** I kid you not, my week became happier the moment I decided to be vulnerable and stop wearing the cape.

The reason I mention wearing a cape is because I heard a radio interview with actor Tyler Hoechlin—he plays Superman on the show Supergirl—and one of the questions he was asked was in regards to the cape he wears while playing Superman. He stated that the cape weighs about 20 pounds. Imagine! Who would want to wear a 20 pound cape all the time?? Not me! Does this make me any less strong? Negative. It makes me human just like Clark Kent, and guess what? You’re human too, so give vulnerability a chance. (Sounds like a bumper sticker.)

I hope that my words—or someone else’s words, hoping that people open up and share—bring comfort to at least one person. I hope that at least one of you is inspired to experience the liberating feeling that comes with being vulnerable. If you need someone to hold space for you, please reach out to me!

Cheers to being vulnerable!

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Vulnerability makes for funny pictures. Yup, that’s my shoe flying behind me.

*I highly recommend trading services with other people. One of the greatest things about our society today is that we are all entrepreneurs of some sort and can use each other’s help. For example, I can take your family portraits in exchange of your babysitting services. Brilliant isn’t it?
**To learn more about vulnerability, I highly recommend Dr. Brené Brown’s TED talk, “The power of vulnerability”
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