no justification needed

something that i’ve been told quite a few times (and started to take note of thereafter) is “you don’t need to justify yourself – you’re/it’s okay”. the first time someone told me that i was taken aback because i didn’t realize that was what i was doing. since then i was more self-aware and began to realize it wasn’t just a one time thing – it was a tendency of mine.

as more of these instances occurred i wondered where this stemmed from and why i felt there was a need to justify myself…like all the time. after having moved home, i realized it happened a lot more and that’s when it dawned on me that it has a lot to do with my family dynamic and how we function as a unit.

being the youngest, i was never really taken seriously. what i mean by that is that what i said didn’t seem to have or hold any value and i had to fight to be heard and fight to make my point. i think especially being the youngest, my parents still see me as a kid even though i’m about to go to grad school and therefore have a hard time trusting me when it comes to doing things in the real world because to them because i’m a child i don’t know any better and they know better. so as a result they don’t take what i have to say to heart or trust what i’m saying as quickly compared to my oldest brother.

while that makes sense, it doesn’t make it okay either. i think instead of realizing what was happening, my brain just kicked in always trying to get in the last word, to be heard, and for my words/thoughts to hold strong to its value. i believe also as a result of that, my parents assumed they know what i’m about to say or are trying to get at so they cut me off before i’m able to complete my thought and me being me, i get frustrated so i feel the need to explain to them what i was going to say. or i feel the need to justify my actions/words because they got it completely wrong. and so all of this is to say i really felt that my words were misunderstood a lot of the time, and when that happens when i interact with people, everything instinctively kicks in thus bringing out this justification idea.

it’s an interesting concept about myself to think about but it’s definitely a thing and it makes a whole lot of sense when i trace it back to how it formed and grew over time.

it’s something i don’t need to do but i feel the need to do. but in a way by justifying myself, i’m looking to others to validate my thoughts/feelings and seeking value for my words through their recognition and i don’t need to prove my words have value/weight when i have that in God already. sure, people will misunderstand/disregard what i have to say from time to time but it doesn’t mean my worth/value should waver as a result of it and that’s something i’ve come to stand by as i’ve reflected on this idea more and more. my worth and value stand firm in Christ and nothing and no one else so really, there is no need for me to justify myself to prove to them and myself that i am valuable when i am valued by the Lord Most High.

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no justification needed

intentionality

|be intentional|

this was a phrase that i heard constantly while in my college ministry. whenever you met a freshman, a new member, an old member, or wanted to pursue a romantic relationship…be. intentional.

even though this phrase was thrown around a lot, it was exactly that. thrown around. i don’t think we ever really knew what it meant to be intentional with one another nor do i think we had the opportunity to do so either. like what does being intentional even entail?

some would say its’s stating your intentions of the friendship/relationship from the get go, others would say it’s reaching out to people and investing in them, but mostly everyone probably had no idea even though they had a seemingly good answer.

and there’s nothing wrong with that, no, i was definitely in the “mostly everyone” category. i just didn’t know what it meant and being surrounded by the same people and being so accessible to one another living on campus, we didn’t really have to try all that hard to be intentional when we saw each other ALL THE TIME. there was no need to be intentional really, it was just…we were there.

so i guess what i’m getting at is that i think i understand what it really means to be intentional now that i’m in the adulting world.

post college, everyone is everywhere. all my close friends either moved to a different city or to a new state altogether, and i moved back home so i was away from all my college friends. basically, we didn’t have that easy and convenient access we once had in college making things a lot harder in terms of keeping up with one another.

>> insert intentionality <<

i think intentionality is two fold. first, it’s wanting to maintain a friendship with the other person. second, it’s taking action to work on maintaining said friendship.

i’ve found it difficult to do that a lot of the time because everyone is working and free time is limited. but it’s definitely not impossible. i’m finding myself messaging people more and being more effortful in staying in touch and up-to-date on my friends’ lives which also includes being present with where i’m at as well in deepening relationships i’m making in my present place.

so whether that’s messaging people more, setting up video chats, or meeting up with people no matter how tired i may be – it’s worth it. and the best part is when you see your friend trying as well and that’s when you know you’ve got a solid friend right there. that even though you may not be in close proximity anymore, they still want to be involved and invested in your life and in order to do that we’re striving towards being intentional and effortful in our friendship.

though there are a few times where i’ve tried to be intentional in meeting up and setting aside time for people that was not reciprocated back, oh well. they were just part of your life for a season and that’s okay and so when it is a two way street, it’s really nice.

being intentional requires heart and effort from both sides and with everyone working so hard and jaded from work and life, you really have to make a point to say you value the relationship and want to deepen it through being intentional.

i’m still working out the details myself, but for now, i’m going to try to

|be intentional|

intentionality

a change in the weather

i’d like to think i’m bold | at least i think i am

but sometimes i’m not | lately i don’t feel like i am

i wish i could be more bold | not just sometimes but always

i want to be open | sharing too much is scary

i’m accustomed to being alone | big crowds make me anxious

i’m an extrovert | i’m an introvert | some say an ambivert

i feel different | weird | it’s hard to explain

so much has happened | so much has changed

is it the weather | is it me

 

 

a change in the weather

Growing Distrust.

treeI wouldn’t say I’m ignorant, but I am naive about certain things. I do know that I’m overly optimistic which has bit me in the butt countless times, yet I still hold true to that mindset. I’ve also noticed that no matter how naturally broken and messed up we are as human beings, I choose to see the best in people, but I think one of my biggest flaws/blessings is that I’m pretty vulnerable to others which is good because that’s how a lot of friendships have gone from peer to best friend but bad because I can get easily hurt. I think the root of why I am so willing to be vulnerable is because I trust too easily, but whether or not that’s a good thing, I have no idea.

This past year was really tough for me in many ways. Fall semester was spiritually and physically draining, discouraging, and stressful while spring semester was an emotional roller coaster, tugging me in all sorts of directions, testing my limits, all while pushing my boundaries. It was definitely an adventure, and a journey I’m glad I experienced nonetheless. Something I noticed, however, is more often than not this past year, I was disappointed in my fellow officers and leaders of the organizations I’m a part of. Why? Because as an officer and as a leader, we are held to certain expectations and we have responsibilities that we must tend to and fulfill, so when those expectations aren’t met, I find myself getting really frustrated. As a result of this frustration, I find myself not being able to trust my fellow officers and leaders as much as I used to. It’s come to the point where they’ve failed too many times to do what they’re responsible for, that I don’t know if I can trust they will do what they’re supposed to do in the future, and that just makes me really upset.

I find myself having to constantly remind them to do things over and over and over again because they keep forgetting. I find myself earnestly trying to get them to help advertise, yet they never do it. I find myself struggling to raise up their spirits and to bring excitement and hope into their dry and unmotivated minds. I find myself brushing it off like it’s no big deal when in fact, it really is. It is a big deal. The first time they’ve failed to do something, sure, it’s okay. The second time, yeah it’s okay. The third, fourth, and fifth time…it’s still okay. But after a year long of constant reminders, constant forgetfulness, constant pushing…it gets to the point where it’s not okay. Through my past experiences, I’ve noticed I’m naturally pretty forgiving because I’m too understanding, and I show too much grace (like I said in the beginning…whether or not that’s a good thing, you can be the judge of that). However, it comes to a point where too much is too much. It hurts when they say they’re going to do something, and they say they’ll do it but they never do. I trust that they will do it the first time, but they never do it. Even after I send reminders, they still don’t do it, nor do they respond back to me. I know I should show them grace and forgiveness (and I have, countless time!), but I feel disrespected like I’m not taken seriously enough…like I’m just a whisper in the wind that they don’t hear…like I have no voice, no value…like I’m nothing. I feel like they just don’t care. And it hurts. It honestly hurts.

Yeah, yeah, I know that maybe I need to be more understanding, more forgiving, more patient, more something, more anything, but I always feel like I’m the one who always get hurt in these kinds of situation or in all situations, really. Maybe I always get hurt because of my darn big ole heart for people, but can’t I just feel sad and upset and everyone be okay with it for once??? The thing is…I hate feeling this way. I want to work together as a team. I want us to be able to trust each other with what we said we were going to do. I want to know that if no one reminds them, that they’ll get the task done. I want to know that if I don’t remind them, that the task will get done. But how can I be reassured in knowing that things will get done if they haven’t been so many times in the past? I don’t want to do everything myself, but sometimes I feel like I have to because if I don’t, then nothing’s going to happen, nothing’s going to move forward, no one’s going to know what to do. I like to take charge, yes, but only when I know that my teammates are right there with me doing their part of the mission. But right now, I don’t feel like they’re all fully there. I don’t feel like they care or want to, so how can I feel safe in moving forward if I’m not able to trust that they’ll do what they’re supposed to do? I’ve trusted too much in the past, and I know I can be too understanding, but now it’s just too much. I feel like that trust is slowly dwindling away. I feel like I can’t trust them at all.

I just don’t want to be the one who is always reminding them. I don’t want to be the one who’s always taking charge. I don’t want to be the one who has to make sure things are getting done. I have my own things, my own responsibilities, my own stuff that I’m in charge of, that I need to do. It’s just too much for me to do what I need to do and to take care of their stuff as well. I don’t want to be their mother, I don’t want to baby them, I want us to work together as a team, but right now, I feel like I’m just telling them what to do. I don’t want to feel this way. I don’t want to have this distrust and hurt going into this year because I know that’s only going to hinder me from being able to work well with my team, but I don’t want to get hurt or annoyed or frustrated or disappointed that they’ve failed yet again. I don’t know if I can do this anymore…I just can’t.

Now I’ve found myself stuck in this awful place of growing distrust, and I don’t know what to do. Yay.

Growing Distrust.