When Hard Things are Good Things

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We can do hard things.

A trademark mantra of one of my favorite writers, one which I’ve been repeating to myself when I need to get out of a corner and be brave and proactive. I often put things off because I’m afraid; not necessarily of rejection, but afraid of feeling like I should have to take responsibility for it. The possibility of achieving my dreams is a lot scarier than the possibility of failing; it comes down to having a lot more to lose, of being on the verge of something big, only to discover that it was too good to be true. It can be exhausting, like trying to grab onto a treat that consistently keeps getting dangled in front of my face, and I just can’t reach it. Eventually the vulnerability and risk-taking leaves me rubbed raw, and I need to take some time out.

Yet, the constant emerging from and then returning to a former shell is not a healthy way to live, and that’s what I’ve been doing.

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As you can see, I recently made the switch from Blogger to WordPress.

It was a slow prompting; I initially just wanted to re-do the look and feel of my original platform, having had the same template for the longest time. But after scouring various websites and failing to find something a little more sophisticated, I began to wonder if it was time to go in another direction. Apparently Blogger isn’t taken seriously by most internet writers anymore, and so I wasn’t surprised by the lack of growth. I had a decent following on social media, but comments and conversations had all but stopped. My writing style had deepened, and it would need a place to evolve.

When I first started blogging six years ago, I needed a safe space to write about things that I was either too scared or intimidated to talk about with other people. I had it in my head that being deep and emotional was what separated me from my peers, but at the same time I still had a lot to say and wanted to express myself. I have to be able to at least process it on paper first before I can try to articulate it in conversation, because that’s what I’m more naturally inclined toward.

But that fear has been shifting little by little, and so has my purpose for writing. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve become an explorer of new ideas and an advocate for various angles; not a contrarian by any means, but always posing the question, “What perspective on this subject hasn’t been covered yet?” I’ve realized that I enjoy advocating for the middle ground, because it’s neither a perspective of defeat nor one of romantic idealism. And I’d like to think that sometimes we all need a break from choosing one extreme or the other.

At the very least, I want to give readers something to think about, a breath of fresh air. There’s a lot of cynicism and fear out there, which has led to frustration and confusion because we don’t want to be alone, but we don’t want to experience heartache either. It’s one thing to know that you’re not the only one, but it’s entirely different when you’re the only one talking about it. If being an example means encouraging others in the process, then let it be so.

It’s not hard and it’s not complicated, but it certainly seems that way, especially in the age of the internet. I want to get to know people and be known in return, but it’s overwhelming to think about the possibility of being so exposed and vulnerable to the masses. Yet, how else do you learn how to be comfortable in your own skin? At what point do you stop apologizing for loving yourself, and confidently own how you think and choose to live your life?  And why do we hide knowing that what we have to give and put out into the world is ultimately healthy and good?

There’s this sad idea that when you’re young, you have to be superficial and not care about what truly matters to you. Am I too far off in saying that most likely, every single one of us wants connection, depth, and intimacy?  We either don’t know how to do it, or assume that no one else wants to, so there’s no point in trying. And that has left many starving for emotional and spiritual nourishment.

In the age of being divided, I’d like to build bridges instead of putting up walls.

Whether you’re making the transition with me or entirely brand new, thank you and welcome! I look forward to the continuing journey, and sharing it with all who come along for the ride.

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