Well 2018 is almost over. It has been a ride and a half. It is always a good time of year to look back and reflect on what has happened, what I have or haven’t achieved, appreciate both the good AND the bad, and re-evaluate for next year.
So, this is what I look back on…
This time last year I was in one of my worst and longest periods of depression in recent years. I didn’t want to celebrate Christmas, didn’t want to really play cricket, didn’t really want to be around anyone.
I then went off and completed my “personal growth” courses, and as a result I can honestly say I haven’t had a day of depression since May.
I can now look at my behaviour with clarity and honesty (most of the time). I can pull myself up when I am not being “on centre”, when I am being a twat or a flog. I feel like I am outsider looking in at myself, digging deep to understand why I am behaving like I am. And every time it is because of me. It is because of my insecurities, my embarrassment or my sense of (lack of) self-worth.
Once I see and understand that, I can then “Own My Shit”...because it is mine, it's no one else's fault or issues. Mine! once I do that my mindset changes, and everything falls into place much easier. The tension, frustration and anger I feel are almost always all dispersed immediately. My daily struggles are so much smaller now (I'm not carrying around my old demon around everyday like I did for the past 40+years), which makes my current daily struggles so much easier to deal with.
Because I have dealt with my demon, I now have the understanding and the skills to deal with my other life issues that arise along the way. They aren't just pushed aside and down, compressing all the issues together until they explode or manifest into other problems. And now my life has started to flow. Life has become easy.
Are there still challenges and outside influences that can cause me to struggle? YES.
But the difference is, I am no longer in survival mode, just trying to survive day to day. I can now live life being present, not just numbing my way through it. I have the energy and clarity to do that now.
Will there be more challenges ahead? Of course. But I am no longer afraid of any of the challenges that come my way. In fact, I am excited. Bring them on! I have been in the deepest of holes that was dark and cold, and I have managed to to scratch and claw and crawl and fight my way out. It was the longest and darkest battle I will ever have to face, so every other battle and challenge that comes my way will fade in comparison.
I owned my shit and faced my demons back in May. I took my life back at that time. It was dark and it WAS tough, but so worth it.
What I have found is that my demon, that abuse I suffered as a child, has affected me on so many levels that there are new issues and layers unravelling every day. As a result, I still have to own my (daily) shit as well. It is a conscious decision and though I am still learning, it is a life skill I recommend every person practice.
Yes, 2018 has been a challenge. Yes, there have been some terribly dark times, some of the darkest of my life. But it has also been one of the best years of my life and one of the brightest.
In fact, I OWNED 2018, so bring on 2019.
My new motto is "Owning It".
This is to remind me of what I had to face and conquer from my past, but also that I have to continue to do it in the future.
I wish you and your family and a wonderful Christmas. I want to now throw the challenge to you to start thinking how you can make positive changes in your life in 2019.