I recently realized that is one of the hardest sentiments for me to admit. I hate those words together. Discouraged. It’s so heavy. Admitting I’m discouraged feels like defeat. Like somehow I’ve failed if I’m not optimistically pressing on when times are hard.
I need help.
Three more words strewn together that I find extremely difficult to say out loud. To admit my need for help exposes my weakness. It means I can’t do all or be all. It means the “I am superwoman and looks it’s so easy!” facade I put on, has to be taken off.
My house is a mess.
Don’t laugh. This is a real thing. I hate admitting my house is dirty, or worse yet, a friend actually seeing my messy house. The orderliness of my house is a direct indicator of the orderliness of my life, my mind, and my heart. If the bed is unmade, dishes left in the sink, floors unswept, it’s a guarantee I’m barely keeping my head above water in all other areas of life.
I have a sneaking suspicion I’m not the only one who has a problem saying these things.
And here’s the real rub, ladies: If you told me you were feeling discouraged, or you needed help, or your house was a mess, I wouldn’t judge you. I wouldn’t think less of you. I wouldn’t feel sorry for you in a belittling way. I would hug you. I would say, “Of course you’re feeling discouraged. You’ve been stuck in a hard place and keep getting hit from all sides,” or “How can I help you?” or maybe just “Girl, I get it. We’ve all been there. What can I do?”
But while all my friends are free to say those three statements to me and I will empathize and respond with only encouragement and love, I’m not allowed to say it to others.
Why do we create rules for only ourselves that no one else has to follow but us?
Unconsciously I live by rules like: Don’t show weakness. Stay strong and independent no matter what. You don’t need to ask for help. You shouldn’t be discouraged.
I need to live by a new rule:
Just be human.
A human can be strong and positive and brave and independent. But a human can also be discouraged, and need to ask for help, or God-forbid have a messy house.
Be human. I don’t know what rules you’ve created that only you have to live by, but cut it out. Ask for help. Admit you’re discouraged. Give yourself the grace you would give any of your friends.