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Finding Joy

Posted by Kristi Mcglumphy on

I was in a really bad place in my life for quite a few years. I had some traumatic things in my family life happen all at once and I slowly fell apart. I started becoming this person I did not even recognize anymore. Gone was the carefree, happy, positive lover of life. In her place was a depressed, stressed out, negative thinking, anxiety-ridden girl. 

It was a strange place to be because I was always upbeat and happy. But sometimes life throws you some stuff that you just don't know how to handle and all hell breaks loose. I was in a downward spiral and I did not know how to get out. I cried daily. My mind would not stop thinking about all the bad in my life. I did not know how to control the anxiety and it started overtaking my life

Fast forward about 9 years. Yes, seriously, I let myself stay in that place for 9 whole years. I was totally at a breaking point. My thoughts were that I truly believed that I would never be happy again. That idea terrified me. I had not experience happiness in 9 years. Sure I was happy at times, but it was superficial at best. It was short-lived and then the anxiety and depression would creep back in.

That fear of never experiencing true happiness again fueled me. I knew I did not want to live the life I had been living. I had to get that joy back. And it was hard. Depression and anxiety become your comfort zone. Its what you know and your brain is used to thinking like that  I had to think of how I could get back to a good place, to find me again.

I decided to start what I called my "Journey of Change". I took baby steps daily to try to find the real Kristi that was hiding under this cloak of darkness. Each day, I made myself find something to appreciate. It could be a bunny in the yard or a beautiful flower I saw in bloom. It was small stuff, seriously. But these small, seemingly inconsequential things gave me joy, for just a moment, but pure joy. Some days, these small things were the only good part of my day. I was still in a very unhappy place but I still trudged on, making myself find one moment of joy daily.

Then, after the small joy moments became habit, I started to focus on one thing about myself that I wanted to change. I decided to start with letting go of my fear of not being perfect, of not being enough. I made myself stop fretting over everything not being just so. I was so afraid of judgment and not measuring up to other's standards that I was a mess most of the time. This kind of change does not happen overnight. In fact, this perfection thing took me a year to get a hold of and it still sometimes goes through my mind. I just know how to cage that thought now.

The whole point of all of this is that I took daily steps over a long period of time to find the me that had been hidden since I was around 20. She is back and I could not be more happy than I am now. I am not afraid to be my goofy, silly, heart on my sleeve self.  This is who I am and I am really sad that I thought for so long that I wasn't good enough to be me.

This is only part of my story and I am sure I will share more at another time. This is why I wanted to inspire and empower other women to not be afraid to be themselves.And if you have lost your way, I hope I give you hope that there is a way back to you. 

Take the time to care for yourself and let your inner beauty shine.

Kristi

1 comment


  • I can so relate to this in more ways than one. my period of darkness had lasted longer and still not totally gone. can we say 18 plus years

    Deborah Walker on

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