I blog for Change.

As I attempt to orient the windy and often treacherous roads that encapsulate life, here are some of my thoughts on the successes, failures and ultimately the hope and positivity in which I strive for a better world. I also hope that I can use this blog as a platform to elevate the social justice issues that are somewhat forgotten in the modern discourse of staying silent on issues that challenge. Sx

10 Questions that Will Change the Way You Think About Your Problems

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It’s been a while since I last posted. But I always find myself turning back to my writing in times of need. I have been in desperate need of clarity again after a particularly trying time. I wanted to share this, despite its deeply personal nature – mainly because I’ve realised that it’s ok to show weakness to accept that I’m struggling in order to reflect, promote self growth and simply move on. I want to share this journey with you all in pursuit of the above,

Thank you to Mark & Angel Hack Life – http://www.marcandangel.com/ for inspiration on the below.

  1. What could you be positive and happy about right now, if you really wanted to?
    • I am in a job that I love, serving people who need me the most. I am making an impact on this world that is just, selfless and beyond just me.
    • I have wonderfully supportive parents who love and appreciate my presence in this world, no matter the faults and mistakes I make along the way
    • My girlfriends – they are truly magnificent. I know that I can always go to them in times of need, or joy and they will be there with a kind word or congratulatory hug
  1. What’s one problem you’re thankful you don’t have right now?
    • It was only after getting out of my last relationship that I realised how deeply unhappy I was. Looking back, I was always waiting, waiting for contact, waiting to see this person, waiting for them to show affection, love, something, anything! Waiting for them to realise and appreciate me, waiting for them to just see me, to really see me for me. In the end, I was really always waiting for the other shoe to drop. So beyond it all, I am thankful that I am no longer in a relationship with someone who didn’t actually see me. I am thankful that I am no longer waiting.
  1. What do you need to stop thinking and saying to yourself?
    • After every break up I always find myself thinking ‘you’re such an idiot’ for doing that – for being too kind, for loving so comprehensively for putting the other person first. I realise, especially after this one that I really need to stop doing that and I have done, by stopping the thought stream as soon as it begins. My life is actually all the richer because I can give those things to someone. That even in spite of all my emotional baggage and damage, I never project that onto the other person and never let those scars stop me from trying, from loving.
  1. What are you holding on to that you need to let go of?
    • Pain, heartbreak, loss – my past. I am holding on to all of these things. Memories of not being wanted, of not being good enough and I’ve been letting these things taint my future. I feel like I’ve been lugging this baggage up hill in already difficult conditions. I know I have to let go, I thought I had but perhaps this is the true lesson of this circumstance. I need to stop talking about the idea of letting go and actually commit to doing it.
  1. Will you blame others and deny responsibility?  Or will you create an action plan to move forward on your own terms?
    • Something I have learnt recently in life is that you can’t control other people, or their emotions, decisions, choices or how they act and treat you. All you can do is control the way to react and your own emotions and circumstance. I can’t control the fact that someone doesn’t appreciate me or have the depth of clarity to understand how much they are inadvertently hurting me because of their selfishness. Nor is it my job to so. All I can do, is choose to put myself first and let go in order to move forward towards a future with someone that puts me first.
  1. How can you respond from a place of clarity and strength, rather than thoughtlessly reacting to this experience?
    • This is a bitter lesson I have learnt. I am a deeply emotional person and thus my emotions can the better of me in most instances. I also have very little patience which means I very rarely think reactions to my emotions through, especially if I am hurting. I have learnt to sit on my reaction to things and sleep on them. If I feel they are still a good idea the next day, then they are worthy of pursuit. Weighing things up is something I have had to more recently which stimulates reflection and clarity.
  1. How can you be of service to this person or situation, and yourself, so that everyone feels buoyed, rather than weighed down?
    • This is a difficult question to answer. I suppose I have led a life where everyone else’s needs always come first. It just happens naturally for me and I don’t fully comprehend just how much it is in detriment to myself unless things fall apart completely and someone leaves me behind. I know I need to find a balance in this area of my life – do things for people who deserve it, towards reciprocal relationships for people who value and cherish me.
  1. Are you placing lots of expectations on yourself or others?  Are these expectations serving you or hurting you?
    • I’m an idealist, so every aspect of my life is lived in the future. Which means that the expectations for what this should look like are eternal. I know I expect too much of people plus hold myself to too high of a standard. I need to be kinder to myself and understand that mistakes are a part of life and that growth would not be possible without them.
  1. Who, or what, needs your forgiveness?
    • In a sense I need to forgive myself. For constantly having hope, for always putting myself out there, for loving so purely and wholeheartedly that I most often hurt in return. I need to forgive myself for trying, for giving everything of myself to try and make something work or see something through. These are qualities to be treasured that will be rewarded toward the right person in times to come.
  1. What do you now know better for next time?
    • I know what I want, what I am looking for and what I will and will not put up with. I know that fighting for someone is worth it, but only if they are the right person. That love, respect, kindness and selflessness is all well and good, but only towards people that give it back in return. I know not to settle for something just because it fills a space or a void. I know the level of my strength and sheer resilience, and it has surprised me beyond recognition.

S x


Author: es.el.gee

Sabene is a development practitioner, activist, writer, blogger and intersectional feminist. She currently works for CBM Australia and manages its East Africa & Philippines portfolio of Community Based Inclusive Development programs. Sabene’s expertise specialises in the intersection of gender and disability. She is passionate about equality and social justice and serves as the founder and editor of SpeakYoTruth, an online publication aiming to elevate the voice of women, specifically women of colour, women with disabilities and those who identify as LGBTQI. The platform seeks to create a safe space for women to speak their own unique stories and raise issues which are most important to them as individuals.

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