I was recently inspired by a Facebook post by A Dash of Meg. She was talking about what makes one MENTALLY strong, PHYSICALLY strong, and EMOTIONALLY strong.
Seeing how honestly she opened herself up in a public forum, I was suddenly seized with the same desire to open up and reply honestly.
I am mentally strong because I too overcame an eating disorder
I am physically strong because I hike up the UCSC hills everyday with a backpack full of notebooks and novels 😉
I am emotionally strong because I struggle with anxiety but I found a way to ask for help.
As soon as I typed those words it felt like a huge burden off my shoulders. To see my thoughts and inner most feelings put into words felt like I was beginning to crack at the rigid outer composure I’ve kept up through the last few years. I’m not one to disclose my emotions with even those closest to me, or my thoughts behind those emotions. This often makes it hard for me to truly connect with people and let them into my life.
This past year has been immensely difficult. I’ve come from a really dangerous place and had quite a journey in the past 12 months. I never would have admitted in the past that I needed help. Admitting that I couldn’t do everything myself was a huge step for me and starting work with a therapist changed my life.
There’s such a negative connotation around “therapy” and “mental illness” but from my experience I think most people could benefit immensely from seeing a therapist 😉 A person that you get to pour out all your thoughts and feelings too, who doesn’t judge you, who really listens, and offers helpful feedback and advice. There’s no couches to lie on or questions like “And how does that make you feel?” in my experience, but genuine human connections.
Yesterday was the first time I put my ED into words and publicly stated that it had existed. There was such a sense of relief in that. In just speaking the truth. The truth is what makes me strong. The ability to acknowledge my past and move forward from it to a better, healthier, happier future is what’s empowering.
Words are powerful and freeing. Simply saying what your going through out loud whether it be to yourself or a friend, make problems seem so much smaller, and at least for me have allowed me to let go of the past and begin my journey forward.
So what makes you MENTALLY strong, PHYSICALLY strong, and EMOTIONALLY strong?