As humans, we are used to the fight or flight response, which our ancestors used in the past to keep them alive and hunt their prey. These days we are not living in caves and hunting to survive and yet the instinct is still strong within us.
Our fear and battle in today’s modern society is predominately in the mind. If you are like me and you suffer with depression and anxiety you will know this fear on a magnitude level.
I can often get caught in a negative mindset and I blow a situation completely out of proportion. My anxiety goes through the roof and before I know it, I have dropped into a deep level of depression. It happens particularly when I am stressed.
In life we have two choices, either to stay in a negative mindset or to think of the positives and help the neurons create new pathways in our brain. Is this easy? No! It is the hardest thing to do, for someone who suffers with any form of mental illness.
I am a fighter and I never give up. Even if I run at something crying and screaming. I have an inbuilt determination which I believe was passed down from my parents. Throughout my life, I have been told on numerous occasions that I can’t do something, or achieve my goals. My answer, in the face of all of this adversity is to basically, stick two fingers up in the air and carry on. This my friends is what I like to call ‘having the belief and being determined to keep going’.
It started when I was young, at my junior school on parents evening. The Headmistress called my mum and me in and started to rant on about, how I was bottom of the class and she really didn’t see me achieving anything in my life. I was ten at the time. Even at this tender age I remember feeling a bubbling anger and thinking ‘who are you to tell me what I can and can’t achieve’.
I worked incredibly hard throughout school and had my disadvantages. However, I came out of university as a qualified goldsmith and worked on the famous Hatton Garden in London for ten years. I have continued my passion in a part-time basis and as a hobby ever since.
I then moved into marketing. Again, I was told I didn’t have the mindset to work in the industry. Sixteen years later, many successful campaigns and money raised and here I am as a Marketing Consultant, working for a very special charity, with one of my best friends Melody. She also writes an excellent blog on a daily basis, which you can find at https://journeyintohope2020.vision/home-2/. She is a celebrated novelist and runs the project I am working with, entirely on her own. Melody knows well about having the belief and determination to keep going.
I was involved in a major car crash in the 2012 and I suffered serious whiplash and had to undergo physiotherapy and massage regularly. I was working as a Marketing and Promotions Officer at the time in a charity. The injury was so serious, I couldn’t even raise my arm to brush my hair.
I distinctly remember one very unhelpful lady saying to me, ‘you will always have problems from this injury going forward’. ‘I suffered whiplash in an accident ten years ago and I still suffer’. The anger bubbled up again and internally I thought, I will show you lady!
I was the best possible patient both at massage and physiotherapy, so much so I would often do the ten exercises given to me in one evening! I joined Pilates and slowly got the strength back in my body.
I took two weeks in total off at work. Fortunately, through the compensation I received, (as the other person who was in the accident, had gone into the back of me while I was stationery) I was able to buy a new Golf with heated seats. I remember driving to work with the temperature turned all the way up to level 5! You could see the steam coming off my leather jacket.
At work, I would jump up in pain from sitting at my desk and immediately start to do my exercises, much to the amusement of my colleague and friend Adam.
To cut a long story short I completely healed myself by continuous hard work and never giving up. The doctor could not believe it when I returned as I had been in such a bad state previously. I went back to this lady who had given me this negative feedback and stated ‘do you remember how you told me I would always have problems going forward with this whiplash?’ ‘Yes’, she replied. ‘Well, I said ‘I have completely healed from it’. I hasten to add, she stood there with her mouth wide open.
My friends, there are many people out there who will tell you you it isn’t possible to succeed in something. The odds against you are too great and you should forget about it. Only you can make that decision, no one else.
So next time someone tries to stop you following your passion or dream, remember to have the belief and determination in yourself and to keep going.
You’ve got this.