I have had a lot of friends and others tell me lately that I am so brave for sharing my struggles with anxiety, and that they are so proud of me for being open and honest. But to be honest, I really don’t feel all that brave or special.
Sharing this experience hasn’t been easy for me because I always have this fear of what others think of me and that my friends will abandon me. But when it comes down to it, I know that my experiences happen for a reason, and I now have another new purpose by helping others by sharing my experiences and my story. When I look back at my 34 years of life (okay now you know my true age), I can reflect and look back and realize that life hasn’t always been easy. I am now able to look back at those difficult times as well as my current anxiety journey, and instead of keeping it all bottled up inside, I can share it with you.
I don’t share my anxiety journey so that you’ll feel bad for me. I share because I hope to inspire, motivate, and lend a helping hand.
Yes, it can be very scary to share our struggles. We often fear that when people see the real us, they will reject us or shame us or walk away. But a good friend wouldn’t.
When you decide to open yourself up to share the real you, there is that risk of hurt and rejection. I am not saying here that you should go out and share your deepest secrets and struggles with people you know who are untrustworthy or who have hurt you consistently time and again. The safest and best first step is to find a counselor who will listen to you and help you to move toward healing before you begin to share with your friends or family. But if you have a friend, family member, or someone you can trust where you can be real and honest about your struggles, then it is okay to be brave and share your struggles with them.
What is my point here? My point is to tell you that there is no reason to be ashamed of your life experiences or struggles. It is okay to share your struggles! We all have some kind of struggle and/or experience that we have to deal with. You can either live your life feeling defeated, beat up, or down in the dumps about how life is treating you, or you can hold your head high, move forward, and realize that you have a story and some great insight that you can share with someone else who might be going through the same thing you have.
So instead of living in shame, know that there is strength and power in sharing your story and your struggles. Know that your story is one that others can benefit from. Your story could help others, change someone’s life, and is worth sharing.
Let’s end this idea of the shame and guilt that often comes with sharing your experiences and struggles. There is nothing to be ashamed of. Where would we be if we didn’t have experiences to learn from?
Let’s talk about it! What is one struggle you haven’t felt like you could talk about until now?