3 Steps Forward, While Sometimes Looking Back in 2020
Someone on social media said that the first full week of January felt like a "fucking year," ha ha! Something about the start of 2020 feels different than in past years--maybe because we are in a new decade, maybe it is the ambition we all have to start the decade off right with a bang or perhaps none of us really had a chance to check out during the final days of 2019 (I know I didn't). Nonetheless, the year has been frenzied-yet-fruitful and there are a couple of things I have become aware of as we left 2019 and entered 2020.
1. It feels so good to speak up for yourself: I have so many examples, from my childhood through adulthood, of not speaking up for myself when it was in my best interest to do so: when someone was making me feel uncomfortable, when I needed to defend myself or when I should have asked for something and I didn't because I didn't want to sound needy or selfish. I've been working on this a lot and I most recently made big progress. What has helped? Positive self-talk (along with therapy!). I have been telling myself things like, "You're not doing anything wrong," or "If you don't ask for this, you will be very angry and your goals will not be realized." When I was being interviewed for the YouTube show The Face of America, which also airs on BRIC free speech TV in Brooklyn, the producer was ready to wrap up and I said, "Wait, there is one more thing I'd like to say." He nodded his said and told me it wasn't a problem. I was relieved that it was okay and that I had spoken up. If I had left the interview without talking about this one topic, it would have been a disappointment for me. Sure, not the end of the world, but because my goals are so important to me, I put a lot of weight on making them realized. In the end, we had a great interview and I appreciated the air time to speak my truth.
2. CBD has reduced my anxiety: Although I am not interested in taking CBD daily, I have taken it twice before family gatherings and it made a huge difference. Unfortunately, seeing my extended family at gatherings makes me anxious because of my abuse. Then I get annoyed because I want to be excited and happy to celebrate various occasions with my family. I took Medterra's CBD Good Morning they day we hosted the family on Christmas and I had NO butterflies in my stomach! I am very sensitive to CBD so instead of chancing it by just taking a few drops from my tincture (I am still testing out the right dose that won't make me sleepy during the day), I took Good Morning because there is B12 and natural caffein, which meant I had energy to host while being less anxious. I don't want to take this every day because I have aromatherapy that helps me manage my anxiety, but this was a great tool for those times when my panicky feelings are on 10 when they are normally on a 2 or 3.
3. A "Love Language"check in is necessary every few years: I recently posted a video on Instagram about this. I'm sure many of you have heard of or read The 5 Love Languages. Chris and I took the test and read the whole book together back in 2011. Every once and a while we look back at our results, which we wrote on the inside cover of the book. Last year I was shocked to see that Touch was my number 1 language. 'WHAT?! I don't want to be touched!' I thought to myself. My ambivalence when I was reminded of the "woman I once was" before remembering my abuse was triggering and in order to take control of my feelings, I realized I needed to take the test again and analyze what was going on. My husband and I are in the process of discussing my new priorities with respect to how I want to be shown love (and yes, my love language did change and I will share more on that in my next post). As our life changes, from becoming married without kids to parents with two kids and most recently a dog, your priorities and needs change and it is okay to take a temperature check regularly to discuss.
Those are my top three things that have made an impact on me these few weeks into the New Year. What about you?