My wonderful friend Cindy of Rainbow Healing wrote this in her October 2018 newsletter:
“Just because you can do everything yourself, doesn’t mean you have to. So often we are such over achievers in our desire to ‘be the best’ or ‘do it better.’ If you do a little soul searching, you will likely find that underneath the drive to be perfect is a belief that you are not enough. And you may find that you try so hard because you feel if you don’t do “better” you won’t be loved. We don’t dare to ask for help as it would be admitting defeat.
So, let me deepen the statement, just because you can do everything yourself doesn’t mean you should. I think it is time we learned to work together, to ask for help, to share the load, and the love. Humans are social beings, we cannot stand on a self-made island and thrive. We need a tribe to thrive.”
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I love that last paragraph and that word “thrive” in particular. I’d like to try the thriving thing but I find it incredibly hard.
“Why it is so difficult to do this?”
My blood family have never been my tribe.
For years, almost 50 to be precise, I have survived. I’ve had to be independent, flexible, self-sufficient. From a turbulent childhood and teen years, through varsity and into adulthood, culminating into being thrust unexpectedly into being a single mom when my marriage came to an end.
Old habits die hard
Habits that have been with me since I could listen and be aware of uneasy, unhappy tensions and energies in my home.
It takes intention and a desire to learn new habits.
An awareness of wanting something to be different.
It takes time.
It takes courage (the everyday kind) to try new things. To put ourselves out there, to sit with the awkwardness of doing things in a new way.
To trust other people.
I feel that resistance to change.
You know the “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” kind of attitude.
But when I look more closely, I can see the cracks, even if they are carefully hidden.
It is broken.
About to break.
The “it” is me.
The cracks of social isolation, lack of support, feeling like it’s me against the world – always.
Overwhelm (too much to do, too much to worry about)
Incessant doing, rushing.
How can I change my habits and ask for help?
The advice out there in the personal development world is to take small steps. A sure fire recipe for failure is trying to change everything in one go.
I recently took my courage in hand to ask a favour of a friend. It’s not what I normally do. My default setting is as Cindy says, to do everything myself.
So, I took a small step.
A teeny-tiny one.
On this occasion, it was about deciding what to do with my cats when I travel for work this week. Usually, I gather them up against their will and take them to the local SPCA for boarding. But for a few days that is so disruptive for them and they hate it and me for a while.
So here’s what I did instead. After a lot of internal wrangling. I sent a message to a friend asking her if she would consider dropping in each day to feed them for me. She said yes, and that she was pleased to be asked, to be of use.
Bam! Look what happens when you ask.
If I stand on my self-made island, I will get more of the same. All I will do is survive.
I’m tired of doing that.
I’ve done that my whole life. Time to switch the mindset and think, do, be different.
To tell a new story.
To find my tribe.
I’d like that.
To thrive. Prosper, flourish, bloom, blossom. Oh I love these synonyms. They’re all about positive growth.
I sometimes feel like Danbo looks in these pictures! I wonder if I can find a tribe?
Do you have a tribe, where you feel you belong?
Part Two of Find my Tribe coming soon!