Broadening my boundaries

Broadening boundaries

Physically

Emotionally

Geographically

Metaphorically

Following on from my post introducing my intentions for my 40’s and 2017, I’ll now expand on the reasons behind them.

To be honest, the overall intention – broadening my boundaries – has been my focus for a number of years. Unfortunately  both physical and mental health issues, the associated life changes and my own confidence, have meant it’s felt like I haven’t been able to do the things I’d like to do. I’ve felt like the decisions I’ve made have always been about picking up the pieces from things that have gone wrong.

A huge part of it has been my confidence, I’d say ‘I can’t …’

because of work

because of money

because I’ll get tired

because of my back, my foot

because I might get anxious

But, sometimes, more in recent years, I’ve done it anyway. Sometimes the fear has borne true, sometimes it hasn’t. But I’ve always come through it and that’s what I’ve got to keep remembering. Like the title of the book, ‘Feel the fear and do it anyway’.

So I’m gentle pushing at my boundaries. As in Vygotsky’s writings, I’m pushing myself into my zone of proximal development. Occasionally (particularly the night before an event) it might feel like I’m going too far, but usually, once I’m there, it’s ok. And just as children need scaffolding to support their development, so do adults. Over the years, I’ve got better at getting help, so I have lots of people, professionally and personally to support and cheerlead. I’ve got people that are either going to mentor or buddy me with my sporting intentions this year. My Dad is helping me with the DIY on my house. I have a fabulous yoga teacher on youtube. I have great friends and family that help so much without even realising sometimes.  I also mostly know where the boundary between ‘proximal development’ and ‘unknown’ is, so I can take successful small steps, rather than anxiety inducing great leaps. I also have a big toolkit of strategies to help myself physically and emotionally and I’m getting better at using them.

I already have some positive ‘evidence’ that I can do it from last year. I traveled to places I haven’t been before, did sporting activities I didn’t think I could do, I started a job I wasn’t  sure I’d be able to handle. I’ve been to events when I’ve felt rubbish, and enjoyed them. I’ve joined a choir and busked in the streets!

Let’s see what I can do this year.

P.S. Reading back through this already feels like broadening my boundaries. Putting myself out there, especially talking about my health is scary. But I don’t want to just put on a false happy, aren’t I wonderful face. This blog is me. I listened to a great podcast with Elizabeth Gilbert and Glennon Doyle Melton yesterday about Glennon’s blogging and writing journey. She spoke about how she was writing, for her, so she could be heard. That she wrote the same whether there were 15 or 15,000 people reading it. But, at the moment, because unfortunately there are still people  (particularly in the workplace) that might view my honesty and battles as weakness, I’m not putting my name on this blog. Hopefully, one day I might, but not yet. So if you know who I am, it’s because I trust you, so thank you.

Summit success! (sod you Osteoarthritis - I can still climb!)

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