At HD, we are starting our Formation of Servants meetings every Wednesday. It’s pretty much exactly the 12 Steps used by Alcoholics Anonymous, but more explicitly Christian (aka we use more Bible verses). I am SO EXCITED to be starting this, because I crave this kind of intimacy with co-workers. There is nothing more comforting than knowing that the people you spend most of your time with know you deeply and still want to spend time with you.
The first step is all about admitting you are powerless, and part of the lesson was three pages of recovery topics we might want to focus on. Here’s what stood out to me:
- approval dependency
- looking good
I immediately noticed a running theme of “I want everyone to love me and I will do anything necessary to appear loveable!”
Since I spend so much of my time blogging, I wondered how much this blog contributes to my problem. I definitely try to appear smart and funny and interesting here. I want people to like my content. I get upset when people don’t. Sometimes I don’t post stories or thoughts because I think people might disagree with me or chastise me.
My first thought was: I will quit my blog! That way I won’t be contributing to the messiness of fame and attention-seeking that it involves.
But this all-or-nothing reaction is unhealthy, I think. I tend to think in dichotomy and All Right or All Wrong. I like easy answers. This is not the first time I have thought this, and a couple years ago, I actually DID quit blogging for several months. It was awful. I don’t think it helped me be any less self-centered, and it took away my biggest creative outlet.
It also ignores all the GREAT things about blogging. Writing is truly one of the things I think I’m gifted at, and blogging is the easiest way to use that gift. I almost never have a problem creating content every day, because my brain never shuts up, and I need an outlet. And in my most honest moments, I share things that are hard or ugly, and those are the posts that always connect me to people – usually through email or secret Facebook messages, but I LOVE those moments when people write to me and say, “You said what I’ve always felt unsafe to say – THANK YOU.” I don’t want to lose the amazing role of being a truth-speaker (or at least honesty-speaker).
So I have both of these thoughts in my head: Quit Everything! and also Maybe I Am Overreacting! And since I’ve learned this in recent years, I tried to think of ways in which I could find a balance. I don’t want my blog to be all about me, but I also don’t want to give it up. What is my middle option?
Well, you may be surprised to find out that this has all been a lead up to….a new blog series!! A couple months ago on Facebook I joined the #womenaremorethan movement, but then forgot about it. I’m going to move that here (and add #menaremorethan, because I’m a feminist and that means valuing equality), and every week, I will put the focus on someone amazing from my life.
If you want to write about #womenaremorethan and #menaremorethan, PLEASE DO. The world can always use more encouraging messages. And hopefully, but using my creative outlet to bolster others instead of myself, I can find that balance between attention-seeking and humility.
Come back next week for my first #womenaremorethan post!