#40daysoflight: courage

My online course, Light and Colour, ended yesterday -- it was so much fun to do.  One of the topics we talked about was courage, and today, I wanted to share my thoughts on the topic (words I shared with the participants of the course a few days ago) with you.

Keep couraging, friends.

Recently, I gave a talk to graduate students at the San Diego State University School of Social Work.  When I was contacted for the talk, the person organizing the event encouraged me to talk about self-care – about how self-care is really important for a group of people who spend their days dealing with some of the most heartbreaking stories of society – stories of abuse, and addiction, and worse.  After I did my research, I mentioned in my talk that since the social work code of ethics specifically stipulates that they are not allowed to let their personal problems or mental health difficulties interfere with their judgment and performance, it is arguable that their profession actually requires self care.  But I also mentioned that in addition to witnessing difficult situations, social workers are also required to create connection, which requires a certain amount of vulnerability.  And to do this – going into difficult situations in vulnerability to create connection, day in and day out, well – that was the definition of courage, if I’d ever heard one.

But now I realize  that everything I said to graduate level social workers a few weeks ago is what I would say to anyone anywhere:  that your life, with its daily challenges and ups and downs, requires daily courage.  It requires to you enter into relationships – with your coworkers, your partners, your children – with a certain amount of vulnerability, knowing that in addition to the probability of reward, there is also a possibility of heartbreak.  And yet you will do this every day of your life.

That, my friends, is courage.

So give yourself permission to practice some self-care today.

Then go forth and make it happen, friends.


Soundtrack:  Little bit of feel good by Jamie Lidell