Listen. We all deserve a pep talk. Life is hard. I don't care who you are, how old you are, how much money you have, everybody's got real stuff to deal with. With what's going on in the world today, even what's going on in our country (HONESTLY, WHAT THE WHAT), it's easy to tell ourselves that our problems don't matter. Yes, these things are bigger than ourselves, but it's not true that they should always overshadow our own problems.
So here's your pep talk: you're doing fine. If you're waking up and making it to school or work each day, you're doing fine. It may not feel like it, it may never feel like it, but I promise you it's true. Just pushing through the times that make you want to quit or stop chasing your dreams is one of the bravest things you can do. This world can so easily push all ambition out of us, and holding onto it is a hallmark of your character. Life is full of peaks and valleys and no matter where you're at, change is on the way. Even though change doesn't always feel good, it's always an opportunity to work toward a better you.
Find people who will brag about you. Doesn't it feel incredible when a friend or colleague introduces you to someone new and you think: I didn't know I was that amazing?! Find people who make you feel like that. Find people who are doing the same things as you who you can not only vent to, but who you can promote and encourage. We're all in this race together and it's exhausting to think we're doing it alone. If I didn't have other teachers to encourage me and tell me it'll all be okay, or to share in my excitement with, I would have quit already. It's too hard to go through life without a support system.
Don't let yourself be consumed by things that cause you pain. If I've learned anything since the election, it's that my mental health is easily swayed. In the span of a year, in an honest attempt to stay informed and "woke," my Twitter feed quickly became a political battlefield and echo chamber. It was and still remains a toxic dump where I consume information that causes me anxiety and stress, and I feel too helpless to be able to fix anything, so those feelings just simmer and sit with me for far too long. I've had to learn to remove myself, even if it means finding new ways to be informed. The same goes for Facebook, or maybe a friend group you've been running with. Toxicity is all around us, and it's so easy to let it absorb us. It's easy to let it take us in, but so hard to remove ourselves from it. But you can do it.
Focus on what makes you happy. Look- it's important to be informed. If you're not informed on the things going on in our country then you're part of the problem. But being informed doesn't have to mean being obsessed, and you can still find joy in a seemingly hopeless place. It takes effort, and it takes determination, but your health is worth it. You are worth it. If you're not sure where to start, here are some things that make me happy:
Finding a quiet place to sit and drink coffee. Writing, even if I never post it. Creating mood boards that reflect how I'm feeling. Going for walks. Jogging. Watching the Office. Being productive. Clean sheets. Listening to podcasts. Eating (Okay, I don't recommend this, but we all do it for comfort sometimes).
So there's your pep talk. I hope it make sense, and remember, we're all doing fine. Also, I need my pep talk too. Don't wait until next Monday to hear from me, send me something that encourages you or that makes you happy! If you get anything from this, just remember the words of the ever-encouraging Kris Jenner: you're doing amazing sweetie.
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