This week I came back from a great Thanksgiving with my family. I have so much to be grateful for: My dad flew in to spend time with us, my aunt threw a fantastic meal, and the most hilarious: I landed myself in the ER after I dug into dessert too fast, setting off my nut allergy! Here’s my ER selfie, the meal we shared, and our group photo.
I’m grateful for my blessings, but I want to talk to you today about getting support for what triggers us in the middle of feeling very grateful. And why we need that support.
If you have issues with the word “support,” you’re not alone. Many people, including me at age 20, connoted it to being needy or weak. I sounded like the strong, self-sufficient women I know who equated support to not being able to “handle it.” “It” being life or relationships or career or family. But over the last decade I’ve come to love support like an article of faith. Why? Because in my early 20’s I couldn’t handle it! Handling it was hard. As far as I’d come and despite the great opportunities I’d created, life still felt hard. What’s my purpose? Who’s the right partner? How do I take care of family? How do I earn money doing what I love? These questions weren’t easy to answer.
Only a decade later, even with baseline self-confidence, was it clear I needed more to manage my life and ambition, which seemed to grow with age.
I couldn’t do it alone, no matter how much I wanted to feel like superwoman.
Back then it stung my pride, but now I can say without a doubt: Everything I’ve ever wanted in life – a thriving business, fulfilling relationship, warmth with my family – has come through support. Here are some examples:
- Depressed and scared about my future, my college therapist shuttled me safely through the awkward stage of graduating into adulthood. She saw the spark underneath how I felt and kindled it until I was able to see it too. Grief, loss, career – she helped me through all of it, and it was pure grace to be able to lean on her.
- After struggling for two years and constant stress, my business mentor finally helped me run my business with systems and ease. Her support took me from zero to six figures plus in one year. Results like that do NOT happen without support.
- After feeling stuck in a relationship, then feeling stuck after it ended (sigh) ;), I knew I had to work on beliefs about love. Skeptically, I sought the help of a love coach. What felt ridiculous when we started astounded me when we finished. I’m amazed at how I can see my blind-spots. With her help, I’ve been with my man for two years, happily.
These are just a few examples of many. When I’ve played at the highest level in my life and FELT most successful, I know I couldn’t have done it without support.
Going solo doesn’t only feel bad, it doesn’t even actually work!
Now I seek support out often, heartily, and without shame. Once I check in with myself, it’s often the next thing I do. No shame. And thus support comes easily and beautifully. Yesterday my friend Sacha emailed me out of the blue, “I had a dream we met for coffee and you felt disturbed about something. Wanna talk?” It delighted me to see how precise her intuition was and how freely she offered her support. When you’re okay getting it, support happens quickly.
You’re not meant to do it alone. The most impressive entrepreneur and hippest women don’t. No one does. As a strong, self-sufficient woman, the smartest thing to do is use all my available resources. Why wouldn’t I use support if I know it strengthens me?
Here’s how to get the support you need:
1. Identify your triggers
Notice if you’ve felt confused or irritated recently. What areas of your life do you feel discomfort or unease? Notice if one particular feeling has persisted and in what area. Signs you need support: exhaustion, impatience, overwhelm. Everything triggers you.
Here were my triggers. Next, I’ll show you how I worked through them.
- For two weeks I wrote my annual 2015 plan in starts and fits. I knew what I wanted, but still second-guessed and questioned. I wanted to nail something final down and let my team know, but uncertainty prevailed. Trigger.
- Over the holiday, family dynamics wore me out and I felt like I wanted a break. Pressure and strong opinions aren’t fun for me to be around, even socially. I didn’t feel present and didn’t want to feel present with them. Apathy = trigger.
- For the last year I’ve felt a need for greater support in my business. To get to the depth and root of success I know I want, I have to know what greater support feels like. For months now, I’ve wanted more enthusiastic support to get to the next level of creation.
2. Identify the support you want for each trigger.
When you learn how to get real support, you get immediate relief. Once I noticed where I felt triggered, here’s how I worked through it.
- For my 2015 plan, I checked in with myself. I didn’t just need my eyes on my plan, I needed my heart in it. I texted a friend who shares my mentor. She confirmed that while our mentor helped her with her plan, she only did so much. My friend was the one who had to trust herself. The nagging feeling that had bugged me of not being able to fit it all in was just me needing to trust my own pace and flow. Friend = support.
- Instead of spending more time with family over the weekend, being crabby while doing so, I took time off. I rested, walked, and listened to audios that connected me to myself. I’m always more connected to others when I choose to realign with me first. Tools to give you what you need = support.
- The spaciousness in my business has grown dramatically since I hired Michele and Shannon, two amazing new members of our team. They are a joy and have created much space and relief. New team = support.
- I spoke to my friend Kristen specifically about our need for support in certain areas of life, spoke to my friend Nisha about re-aligning with life and self, and also have a skype date with Sacha.
We’re never alone. All you have to do is break the resistance to reaching out, and you’ll see just how much support is available to you. It can work wonders.
What triggers have you identified in your life? What type of support have you identified to help with each of your triggers? If you’re currently taking advantage of that support, let me know how it has strengthened you. And if you know someone who needs to hear this, please share it with them. If someone can benefit from hearing this today, don’t keep it to yourself. :)