What the heck?!

What the heck?!

I believe self-analysis can be a good tool when you are working on bettering yourself or trying to improve relationships with others. I am finding my hyper self-analysis is not so helpful when used to extremes. When I am second guessing my every movement, word or belief it is not helpful but harmful. Over thinking stunts my growth and my ability to move forward in my life, censoring myself because of fear.

Let’s take campaigning for instance. I knew, that when I decided to run for office, that my every thought and word were going to be analyzed or questioned. I knew I would be the subject of interviews, surprise pop quizzes on the street and random meetings to discuss my intent. Originally, this did not concern me. I have an opinion on just about everything like most people in the world, just ask me.

Yet, when I over think the judgements of others, I want to shrink back into my hermit hole (home) where I am safe and secure. Is this anxiety or human nature? I had even stopped writing so freely because of these feelings. I have decided to concore my fears and keep moving forward anyway. What the heck?! Why not?

Clearly the option to retreat into my comfort zone is no longer available. I am in it up to my chin on the campaign trail and most of the time I love it! My fabulous community has embraced me and my efforts to be the change I wish to see. Running for this political position is my noble attempt to really put my effort and energy into bettering my community and myself. Yet the human tendency to second guess is still very real.

I do not second guess why it is that I am making these efforts. I know that the “why” behind my goal is very much to protect what I love. My community, my family and the environment for future generations. To be a voice for those who cannot speak.

It is the how I go about it, that gets me insecure in my efforts. The time and energy campaigning take away from my real life needs and responsibilities is very noticeable. I work less because I campaign more. I am not a trust fund baby. Like most people, working is a necessity to eat and pay the bills. I’m having a tough time balancing work and the campaign responsibilities, which is causing me stress in other areas of life. This is where the second guessing and over thinking comes into play.

Like most people, I try to figure out what it is that is wrong and how I can take steps to fix it.

I feel that the stress and effort will be worth it. When election day comes I want to say that I am happy with my efforts and that I did the best I could to make a difference in my small corner of the world. I will be able to tell myself “You did all you could.” And be okay with the outcome life gives me.

At times I think to myself “Why would someone put themselves through a life consuming, 9 month long, job interview for a position you may not get? Only to work as a public servant who is sometimes ridiculed and unappreciated. Why would you do this if you didn’t have an ulterior motive or a beneficial end game ploy?” This whole experience has taught me how important it is to be authentic. To be authentic in remembering why I am in this position in the first place.

I am running because I feel guided to a way that puts my purpose in line with bettering myself and my community for the greater good. To do my best to move forward towards a sustainable and healthy for the future. To be a leader with integrity that looks out for the greater good, not just what is good and easy right now.

Sometimes it is not profitable to do the right thing. Sometimes it is just best to do what is hard because it’s the right thing to do. That is my goal. I really am just a regular person who never really had political aspirations. I am only me. Standing up and doing what I can to be a voice for our environment because it needs one.

I am learning on this journey that yes, I may second guess words, but you know what? Who doesn’t at times? If, I can say I’ve done all I could to stand up for my beliefs and for others, then I need to be content in that effort. Progress doesn’t come in a straight line to success, it’s a twisted path of ‘Ah ha’s’ and moments of ‘what the heck was I thinking?’ This is life!

I don’t’ believe it is healthy to be certain about everything all the time. That is a dangerous echo chamber, of in the box thinking, that impedes progress or necessary change for improvement.

I believe if I don’t quit, I am still moving ahead. I am choosing to be content with the uncomfortable in-between moments that make us human. It’s okay to question myself, my motives and my uncomfortable situations, it leads to growth.

I will always continue to question myself as this allows me to hold myself to the high standards that I have set for other political leaders. Maybe that is the point?!

Thank you for reading my blog today!

Emy Minzel ~ Adventure Sister

https://emyminzel.com

@emyminzel

@EmyforHouse15A

http://www.EmyforHouse.com

Follow the Adventure Sisters on Facebook!

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Stacy Crep ~ Adventure Sister

https://stacycrep.com

 

Lessons through disappointment~

It’s going to be the second week in August and I have been on the water and in my kayak only one time, back in June. For unforeseen reasons, both lake vacations I had scheduled to take this month had to be cancelled. I had been puting off lake time and rest during early summer because I knew I would have the opportunity in August. That was the plan anyway. 

I was supposed to go to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area with my Adventure Sister Stacy, the first week in August. Then to a resort (on Lake Kabetogama) with my Husband for his birthday and our Ten-Year  Wedding Anniversary a few weeks later. Turns out things changed and not just one but both vacations had to be cancelled. This turn of events was a devastating blow to my spirit to be frank. 

I was so very much looking forward to spending time on the water; reconnecting with my dear friends, my Husband, myself, and the nature I love so much. It literally feels like the Universe took away my Birthday. Oh, and like I told you in my previous blog, my one and only child moved out of the house this week. So honestly, although I have a great deal of important things to do, my spirit is feeling neglected. I’ve also noticed this feeling reflecting in my attitude and spirit.

We all get this way sometimes, when life changes or events begin to feel overwhelming or never ending. We may dream of getting away to escape it all; so that we can have quiet time to process our next move or to simply have a moment to quit moving! Going and going like the Energizer Bunny, does not allow me to stop and contemplate my feelings, choices, or strategy for the future. When I am unable to find time to reconnect with what is important to me; like spending time in nature, floating on the water, cooking, or writing, I can feel it in my soul.

At first, the news of my cancelled vacations led to a short pity party for one. But I decided not to wallow and keep moving forward with life, as that is what adulting is about. I had decided it was guidance from the Higher Power that my energy was needed at home and on the campaign trail. Yet, as the week of my BWCA vacation passes and my body does the motions of work and progress, I feel the  usual upbeat energy of my spirit and drive fading. Because I am not making time for my own needs. 

It is easy to get caught up in living the life others think you should be. Especially as a Candidate. I have a whole team of people who bust their butts for me and I do not want to let them down nor myself by not doing everything I can do! My campaign life is exciting, important and the way I see myself making a positive difference. Yet, is neglecting my own needs the right way for anyone to live their lives? Probably not. I am hard on myself as I have high standards not only for me but the people around me. 

Yet when they need a break, I am compassionate and understanding while they take one. Why do I feel like I do not deserve one or that I am not able to take one? I am lacking disposable income for vacation this summer because I have cut my working hours down to meet the campaign needs. It was a sacrifice I was able and willing to make. The repercussions though, are that I feel like I missed out on some much needed and deserved time out in the forest and on the lake to recharge. 

I am not looking for pity, I understand many people are not allowed the luxury of vacation. These choices are mine and I believe my heart and efforts will see me to making a positive difference in the world. If not, I still made a lot of great friends and had wonderful experiences this summer! I knew it would not be without hard work or expense, I was up to the challenge/adventure. 

What I am not willing to sacrifice are the needs of my spirit or ignore the calling of my soul to do what I must do. I must be the change I want to see in the world, to do that, I must make time to be authentically me. My spirit is being called to the water, asking me to rest for a bit to find balance and peace.

My soul, is telling me that I have been telling myself, “What I want and need does not matter.” I am not making my spiritual needs as important as other things in my life. I am not making my ‘peacefulness’ a priority. I am putting the wants and needs of my campaign, my family, and my goals over my spiritual wellness. 

This is a reality for a lot of people in our society. I believe this lack of connection to what is tranquil and quiet is where a great deal of our displaced anger comes from in our Nation. All work and no play makes Emy an angry girl. This is not an obscure dilemma for most people in our world today. I find myself covering up my sadness of not being able to connect with nature (or enjoy some of our short Minnesota summer) by coping with anger. I am distant and distracted.

I am distracted by my desires to be anywhere but here sometimes. 

I know you feel these words. 

This is not normal for me, I am  usually and naturally an upbeat person. I thought about not posting such personal feelings. Yet I wanted to acknowledge that I believe; most of us are striving daily to do better, be better, have better, but that we get lost in the ‘doing and getting’ part. Forgetting that stillness and connection to Spirit/God is of great importance, not only for ourselves but to our connection with others and society. 

So, what is a girl to do? I don’t know. I am not a Guru. I won’t offer advice. I will only share my experiences and feelings for you to judge me upon. Do I go put my kayak out on the local lake that is full of algae and pollution? Nope. Don’t need that energy. (Although I acknowledge it is there and strive to do all I can to fix it.) 

Do I find a friend with a backyard pool to float in for a moment in the sun? Nope, not what I am looking for. I need a change from the daily grind. I need new experiences and scenery to stimulate my mind. I want to hear nothing but nature and water. I must reboot like my computer! My body, mind and spirit connection needs to be tended to. 

As with the unpredictability of life, I am not sure when or where it will happen. Yet, I am trusting that Spirit has a plan for me to do just this. Somewhere out in this big Universe this opportunity is waiting for me. Until then, I will be thankful for the good in my life. I will enjoy the nature from my front porch. I will focus on the song of the birds and the wind rustling the leaves of the trees instead of traffic.

I trust the higher power knows what is best for me at this time in my life. I trust this path, I trust this frustration, I even trust the feeling of having my Birthday taken away! This gives me incentive to acknowledge, respect and tend to my own needs. 

The nurturing instincts I have for my loved ones, the planet, animals and others must be also extended to myself. Life lessons or tough love from the Universe can open our eyes to the reality of our actions. My needs are important too. And so are yours. Remember that.

Emy Minzel ~ Adventure Sister

https://emyminzel.com

@emyminzel

Follow the Adventure Sisters on Facebook!

https://www.facebook.com/BWCAdventureSisters

Stacy Crep ~ Adventure Sister

https://stacycrep.com