First of all, you are not alone
As I look towards graduating college and planning a life, I’ve learned how important it is to fight for yourself. However, if there’s one thing I’ve realized this year, it’s that I’ve spent most of my adult life scared to do just that. Why? Because so much is up in the air, there’s not much semblance of a plan, and up until this point, I’ve been more focused on what other people expect of me than on what I TRULY want.
Talking to friends and family has revealed that I’m NOT the only one who struggles with this, so the first thing I have to say is you are not alone.
The second thing I have to say is this: at the beginning of every day, you have a choice. You can choose to be your own worst enemy like I’ve been doing for so long. Or, you can choose to be your own biggest cheerleader, the person who fights FOR YOU, because when it comes to your personal life and wellbeing, you know best.
So, how did I get to this realization and what are some ways we can all fight for ourselves in 2021?
Fighting for Yourself in 2021: where to start
The other day, I was talking to a friend about all the things I’m afraid to do: Things I want but am too afraid to fight for, things I think I want but am unsure about because of all the outside pressure. We had a long, winding conversation, but one thing she said stood out among the rest. She said, “when it comes to your personal life, no one will look out for you better than you look out for yourself.”
That stuck with me. Why? Because not only is she right, but when you’re an anxious, approval-seeking person like me, putting yourself first is freaking hard to do!
This got me thinking about two things: first, why is it so hard to identify and do what’s right for you? Second, how can I practice looking out for myself this year?
Short answer: be brave,
Long answer: be your own biggest cheerleader, even when it’s hard. Get clear on what you want, consider the pros and cons for you, and decide if your desire is worth the initial fear that comes with it.
I’ve been asking myself this very question the past few days, and although it might sound easy to answer in theory, I’ve realized that in practice, it’s actually pretty damn hard.
So, here are some tips on fighting for YOU
Describe your ideal life. I know this is a tip that gets thrown around a lot, but when I say it, what I mean is this: spend 15-20 minutes only thinking about yourself. What do you want? Where do you want to be in 6 months, a year, five years? What does a day in the life of future-you look like? Once you’ve done some visualizing, write it down. That is what you want. Now, how are you going to fight for it?
Remember that sometimes, you have to do things you don’t want to do to get to where you want to be. Getting where we want in life is, unfortunately, not all sunshine and rainbows—and the more I think about it, the more I believe it’s better this way. Life forces us to step out of our comfort zone. To be brave. And that’s not a bad thing!
If you’re scared, don’t immediately say no. Instead, ask, “why does it scare me?” If your answer to this question has to do with what other people will think, say, or feel because of your decision, this is a clue that you should probably say yes or reassess your decision. Although it’s important to keep other people in mind, you have to value and take charge of your own happiness. Just like my friend said, no one will fight for you like you fight for you.
Ask yourself, “what would happen if I said yes?” If you’re a planner like me, you like to have some idea of how something is going to go down before you agree to it. Unfortunately, it’s impossible to anticipate the outcome of every decision you make. Even so, it’s always good to consider the possibilities. So, next time you’re faced with a decision or opportunity regarding your life goals and desires, think about what would happen if you said yes. Does saying yes get you closer to your ideal life?
Download my free Writing Through Your Desires mini-workbook. Want more information or just an extra push? I know I did. That’s why I created the Writing Through Your Desires mini-workbook. This tool will help you visualize your ideal life by asking you to consider what you want and how to get there. It will also provide you with some tools to help you get started on your journey!
You’ve got this! And remember, your happiness is always worth it.
“Don’t be afraid of your fears. They’re not there to scare you. They’re there to let you know that something is worth it.” – C. JoyBell C.
With Love, Cats, and Coffee 💖,
The Present Active Writer