Writing for me – but with you in mind.

Ok, so are you ready for a confession? Here it goes . . .

I’m a perfectionist AND I’m human. Deadly combination, I know.

The thing is . . . I do social media and blogging promotions for a living. So I had this grand idea in my mind about how to go about this blogging thing when I ventured into the blogging world. After all, over years of experience in the industry, I’ve built a sort of formula – write, promote on social, measure, fix things, and repeat (more or less). The only thing is, I work for a large, global corporation with a large social following, large ad budget, and all the resources I could dream of as a social media marketer. How can I expect the same results and attack this private-blogging thing as I do my career?!

Well, I can’t! Duh! Not entirely anyways.

Sure, there are things that I can use and I do have an advantage already knowing how to go about social media marketing, but promoting a NEW personal blog and an already established B2B blog of a global corporation are two different beasts. I can’t expect to get the same results from one as the other, and unfortunately, I forgot that.

I went into this thinking that it would be “cake” – and when I didn’t get the results I expected from the “perfect” formula I knew to work well, I became discouraged, which then blocked my creativity and my ability to put pen to paper, so to speak. I completely shut down, gave up, and stopped writing – stopped blogging.  Not to mention, I got caught up in the likes and followers of the social media world.

But yesterday, was an eye opener. I got the ability to go to the Pennsylvania Conference for Women and that was truly life changing. Being around women of all walks of life, with different hopes and dreams, and different career paths – made me realize that although I gave up on writing, it has still been in the back of my mind. And it’s not doing any service to anyone by just being there – especially not me.

So here I am, to tell you that – I expected perfection, didn’t get it and I immediately shut down because I’m human and that’s what I sometimes do. But I’m back and this time, I’m determined to write for me.  Don’t get me wrong, I want my stories shared, I want for you to read this blog and share with all your friends and family – but right now, that’s not going to be my driver.  My push forward will be me and my story.  Sharing my experiences while hoping that it resognates with someone out there.

With that being said – read, enjoy, and comment, if you’d like!  🙂

Important lesson from divorce

When I separated from my son’s dad three years ago, I thought the world was going to end. Never did I think that I would grow so much and find so much happiness, strength, and power from such a devastating situation. I feel blessed to have been able to take so many positive things from that heart-wrenching time and although I still continue to learn and grow, three years later, there is one thing that I learned along this wayward road that I use every single day.

Some call it a sixth-sense. Other’s call it their gut (which is what I tend to call it). Some say they “have a feeling.” Some might even refer it to their “third-eye.” There are people that might even refer to it as “following your heart.” Whatever you call it, the most useful lesson that I thank my divorce for is trusting my intuition.

While married, my then-husband suffered from PTSD (more to come on this at a later date). PTSD has different “symptoms” for everyone and it shows it’s ugly face in many different ways depending on the person and what they have gone through. For my son’s dad, one of the outcomes of his PTSD was lying. During our marriage, he started lying about the little things. There were such small lies that when I suspected it and had a “feeling” that he might be lying, I would tell myself that I was wrong because “it was so silly for him to lie about something so unimportant – there’s no way he would do that.” Or, I would chose to ignore them because I thought I was “choosing my battles” and I didn’t think something so small was worth the trouble of an argument. Funny thing is, the few times that I did catch him in a lie and did bring it up, I would always say “if you lie about the little things – you’ll lie about the big things.” He would tell me he wouldn’t do it again and of course, I had the “gut feeling” that this wouldn’t be the last time.

Boy, was I right!

Once we separated, weeks/months after finding out about his affair, a handful of lies that he had told while we were together finally came to light and I nearly kicked myself. All those times that I “had a feeling” that things weren’t quite right – were in fact, not quite right. He had lied.

Morale of the story: I had an intuition about it and I purposely chose not to listen to it. Would anything have changed if I would have listened? Who knows! But the point here is not what could have changed. The point is – when did I stop trusting myself and my gut? Looking back – I don’t know when I stopped. And I suppose it didn’t matter – the important thing is to get back to knowing and trusting myself.

It took time, and I still struggle with it sometimes, but I’m happy to report that now, when I get that “feeling” about something – I listen! And guess what?! In the past three years, it has NEVER let me down – which is probably why I’m so happy with my growth through this and where I am in my life right now.

Trusting my gut has helped me end dating situations that I “had a feeling” weren’t right for me. It has led me to take certain paths in my life that have led me to meet some wonderful new friends. Listening to my intuition has helped me manage co-parenting when my son’s dad has been difficult (and that’s a mild word for it). Trusting that feeling has led me to take a HUGE risk in my career that led me to my current job that I love sooooo much and has provided such amazing things for me in the short time I have been here! Trusting my gut has even made me a better mother and to trust the fact that although what I do as a mom might not be perfect, it’s still right for us in this moment in time.

I’m not sure if you know who Theresa Caputo is (Long Island Medium ring a bell?), but my sister and I just went to see one of her live readings and she said something that kind of stuck with me. Now, I’m not sure if you believe in this sort of thing (and I’m not even 100% positive that I do), but I am open to learning and taking things in – so during her reading she was talking to a mother who lost her child when he was 3 years old while the child was under her ex-husband’s care. While she described her situation she mentioned, “That morning, when I dropped off my son at his dad’s and said goodbye, I don’t know why but I held him tighter. I felt like I wasn’t going to see him again. I just had this bad feeling. It was so strange.” Theresa gave her this understanding smile and said, “So you had a gut feeling that something wasn’t right? Like something was going to happen that day? . . . of course you did. That was your soul telling you what was going to happen – you just couldn’t understand it.”

She went on to explain her belief that our souls are a living, active energy within us. How our soul lives somewhere in our subconscious mind – somewhere where we can’t really reach it. But our soul knows exactly what we are here to do in this lifetime. It knows our purpose in life and it knows what our journey in this world is meant to be. And when we ask ourselves questions and listen to our “inner voice” – that’s when we get that “feeling” of something that is about to happen because our souls are giving us the answer, since it already knows the outcome.

I took that statement home with me. I thought about it on the hour drive home from her show and I realized the statement actually brought me comfort that night. The thought that my inner self already knows my purpose and my path in this world made me feel less anxiety about the uncertainty the future brings. It made me feel more at ease knowing that whatever tough situation comes up, one way or another, I will “know” the right choice for me.

Again, I don’t know if you believe in that sort of thinking and you might think I’m crazy that something so silly brought me comfort but honestly, you don’t have to believe in it. The point here is that we all have that inner voice – some of us just choose to ignore it, while others choose to listen to it. The important thing is to TRUST that our inner self knows us better than we realize and that trusting our intuition will lead us where we are meant to be.

The Time is NOW

Over a year ago, I gave this blogging thing a try.  I blogged for about a month and a half and it was fine – but something was off about it.  The truth is, I’ve wanted to start a blog for a while.  I love to write and have loved it since I was in middle school.  I loved it so much that growing up, I would write short stories, I wrote and helped managed my high school newspaper and eventually went on to write and be an editor of my high school newspaper.  I’ve always kept a journal with my own thoughts and feelings but somewhere along the way, I stopped.

I think adulthood got in the way and then I began to feel insecure about my writing – “I’m not a strong enough writer.  I have nothing to say.  My feelings are too private to share.  Everyone is going to judge my writing and my thoughts.” The usual doubts and fears. But as I continued growing up and began to go through tough times (which you will learn all about in posts to come), I started finding my voice again and that need to write slowly began to intensify within me.

I wanted to share my story, I wanted to share my thoughts, and most importantly – i wanted to impact someone – someone who might have the same thoughts and feelings about a certain situation and might feel alone, much how I felt and sometimes continue to feel.

So when I started to blog a year ago, although I didn’t realize it at the time, looking back at it now, I found myself not connecting with my emotions and writing just for the sake of posting something. Although what I wrote was very real – there wasn’t any emotion behind it  – I wasn’t 100% behind it.  So naturally, I lost interest and it became a chore – a chore I didn’t want to do.  So I stopped.  I let it all go, with no intentions of coming back.

Time passed and in the last 6 months – writing has taken over my mind.  I find myself thinking about topics to discuss and how I would state certain things and picturing exactly what and how I would talk about things.  The thought of writing overcame me to the point that I couldn’t focus on anything else.  And now that I sit here typing, I know that THIS is my time.  The time is now!

The stars have aligned and I’m emotionally ready to share some of my stories.  Maybe not all – not at this time.  But I’ll know when I’m ready and in the meantime I’ll go through this journey with you all.  Together we will fine ourselves and we will find our voice and our purpose – because this is the time!