Sometimes we don’t understand something until we experience it. They say that’s where our empathy and compassion often come from for other people. We feel their pain and we understand because we’ve been there ourselves.
Back in 2017 I didn’t think about the new year as a fresh start. I thought of the new year as just another day. So, in my unquenchable quest for understanding I asked a psychotherapist friend of mine to explain the new year mainstream thinking to me. I knew his perspective would be very enlightening; mainly because he’s just that kind of person. So, he simply explained that a new year can represent a fresh start, like the ending of a chapter and the beginning of the next chapter. Ok, I see the light, easy enough. I still didn’t relate to it on a personal level, but I walked away with an understanding that I didn’t previously have.
Fast forward six years later to 2023; it really felt more like slow motion but that’s another story. I felt it! I felt the relief of the thought of 2023 coming to an end and the excitement of a whole new year beginning. I even decided on one big thing that I was going to leave behind in 2023 and not take into 2024. Of course, it comes into 2024 with me but in a different form. The old form felt heavy and very burdensome. The new form feels more hopeful and lighter.
Different perspectives can really enable us to see things differently, consequently, feel them differently as well. Nothing changed in my circumstances. What changed was the way I was looking at things. A fresh start as my friend had explained six years ago. With that in mind I was able to pause and to reflect on all of what I came through in 2023. The obstacles that looked impossible and somehow what I call “nothing short of the miraculous” showed up again and again.
I am grateful beyond words to all the people who shared their vulnerable humanity with me and showed me their love and support through their presence. Many of you were complete strangers as you sat in my client chair for the first time, but within minutes we experienced a heart-to-heart connection. A knowing, an understanding that we are not alone on this journey. We experience many of the same uncomfortable emotions.
That brings us back to the beauty of having life experiences that leave us with empathy and compassion that we may not have had without it. We bear a lot of hard stuff in this human experience on planet earth! The truth is year after year we do hard things and we do get by with a little help from our friends. (Yes, I’m having fun with this; I love the podcast “We Can Do Hard Things” and the Beatles sang, we get by with a little help from our friends. LOL.)
I encourage you here now, look back over 2023 as a storehouse. So many different treasures and yes, the bigger ones came with greater pain. You received so many learnings, so many understandings, you shed some old skin and grew some new skin.
And just maybe some of you are not experiencing the silver lining and you need some coaching to get through. I’m here for you as a “trusted friend” (a sweet client called me that today) and to remind you of all the hard things you have made it through, and this is where you’re at and together we will get you through this one too.
You don’t have to go it alone…
Call me (Joann Dunsing) @ 203-907-7710 for your complimentary phone conversation. Or click the button below. I usually respond within 24 hours.