As we head further into the holiday season, it is important for each and every one of you to know that you are special simply because you exist. People have been telling me about their social anxiety as they get closer to seeing family and friends for the holidays. Your best defense to social anxiety is knowing that you are special and then smiling at everybody.
Many of you believe, as did I when I had Parkinson’s, that they have value or are special based upon achievement and performance. When the Parkinson’s reduces the ability to achieve and perform, many people lose confidence in themselves, and their self-worth plummets. What you need to know is that you are special simply because you exist!
In November of 2017, I wrote a book entitled, “Fighting Parkinson’s…and Winning.” To understand just how special you are simply because you exist, it would be helpful to re-read pages 98-113 in the book. If you have the Kindle version, it is near the end of Part Two in a section entitled, “I viewed the healing of my soul primarily as a 4-step process.” Then read the next section about gratitude to the end of Part Two, pages 113-121.
If you do not have the book, you can click here and purchase a paperback or download a Kindle ebook from Amazon.
To assist all of you with this concept, here is an excerpt from my book:
I understood in my heart and soul that I was uniquely me. It was not my accomplishments that made me special. It was not straight A’s that made me special. It was not hitting the home runs or scoring the most points or getting the lead in the play or the solo in band that made me special. It was not the great job that made me special, or the promotions or the raises, or the leadership positions I held that made me special. It was not the schools I attended or the degrees I obtained that made me special.
My thinking for almost all of my life had been that these were the things that made me special. However, that type of thinking was nothing more than the illusions I had created in my mind. I felt that I needed to be an over-achieving perfectionist in order to be special…in order to be accepted and liked and loved.
I had gotten the impression that acceptance, being liked, and being loved was based upon performance and achievement. This was because no matter how hard I tried and no matter what were my achievements, it never seemed to be good enough.
In my recovery, I understood that my achievements had been more than enough. However, I gleaned that the people from whom I was seeking approval, being liked, and being loved had been incapable of expressing these things to me as a result of their own life issues.
Ultimately, this brought me to a place of not approving of myself as well as not liking or loving myself. I felt that my best was not good enough. The people who had given me this impression had moved on in life. However, I was the one who had gotten stuck internalizing unhealthy feelings about myself.
Then, I broke free and became liberated. I understood that I was special simply because I existed.
Every one of you is special simply because you exist! When you see family and friends, know that they like you and love you because of who you are. Instead of being anxious, look them in the eyes and give them biggest smile that you can find…the smile that says, “I am special simply because I exist, and so are you!”
You are worth it!!!
All my best,