February 20, 2018
When I feel the most alone, I am usually surrounded by people. I don’t feel the most alone when I am truly alone because I find comfort in solitude.
I feel it when I am out of my comfort zone and in desperate need of something familiar. I’m not a big fan of change but at a certain point in my life, something had to give. I needed to come out of my comfort zone and find my support system.
We want to see ourselves demonstrating a great deal of strength, even when we want to give up. To do this, we need a support system.
A person or group of people we can turn to in our darkest times and receive the support that we need and deserve. Not a single person on this planet deserves to go through something difficult, alone. We are a species meant to rely on one another.
“We are only as strong as we are united, as weak as we are divided.”
― J.K. Rowling
I experienced bullying in my teenage years and that led to me simply not trusting other women. I didn’t trust that a woman who told me I looked lovely was being kind and honest. I thought every compliment I received was a direct attack on me and my appearance. I didn’t think there were genuinely supportive females in my life. Which, at the time, was partially true. I had many female friends, but only one that I could tell ANYTHING to and trust that she would respect my wishes to keep my personal issues private.
The other girls that I called my friends were often cruel to one another in secrecy. I saw how they talked about each other and knew that they probably spoke of me that way, too. I had to break free from their toxic behavior and find strong and loyal friends that I could trust.
I remember growing up, there was a girl in my class that just could not bring herself to be happy for me. I would win a race or get a high test score and this girl would say horrible things to me instead of congratulating me. Which is okay. You don’t have to say something kind. If that’s the case, and you simply have no kind words for someone, say nothing. That’s what I’d wished for many years.
I wished that this girl would have just let me live my life because her harsh remarks remained in the back of my head into my adult life. Not only was she unsupportive, but she was cruel. Nobody deserves to receive backlash for accomplishing something they are proud of.
Now, as an adult, I say as many kind things to people throughout my day as I can. I spread love and joy to those who need it and even to those who don’t, because that’s what I wish I would have experienced as a younger person.
My support system now consists of strong women and men who enjoy seeing me flourish. They cheer me on when I’m putting in extra work. They help me through hard times. They laugh with me, cry with me and get angry with me. However, they don’t allow me to dwell in my sorrows. They let me be upset for maybe 5 minutes and then they tell me to hold my head high.
That’s the support we all need. We need a person who will tell us it’s okay to feel what we feel, but not to feel that way forever. A support system is supposed to encourage you to be the greatest version of yourself. If this is not what your support system does for you, consider finding a better one.
The people that you choose to surround yourself with can either make or break you.
So, choose to surround yourself with people who love and support you unconditionally. Instead of waiting for a strong support system to find you, go out and find it on your own. You have to be in control.
As women, it’s our duty to add to the amount of women who are rooting for each others success. Rather than demonstrating jealousy and negativity towards a woman who may have something we want for ourselves.
Nothing good can come from letting another woman believe that her dedication and hard work are not accepted. Be proud for the woman who just got a promotion. Be happy for the woman who just got married or had a baby. Be excited for the woman who is excited for herself. That’s how we empower.