It’s normal to give reassurance to kids. But adults? We look for it in places without even realizing we’re doing it.
A few days ago we had our neighbors over for dinner. Their 8th grader is an exceptional artist. She goes to an art school instead of a normal high school, she makes stuff that I would actually hang on my walls. Her work is really, really good. What I love, though, is that she doesn’t know it.
Every time I visit my neighbor’s house she takes me around and shows me her latest creations. I always enjoy it. It’s fun to walk around with her and genuinely tell her what I like about her work, and I can tell she appreciates it, too.
This time though, the neighbors were at our house and it just so happened that I had made pressed flower art that I wanted to show off. No—I didn’t want to show it off—I wanted the 8th grader who is really good at art to tell me that my art was good. I liked it, sure. But to me, it wouldn’t be good unless she told me it was.
I didn’t think about it much at the time but a few days later I was shopping and came across a shirt I wanted to buy. Instead of bringing it to the cash register and purchasing it, I took a photo of it and sent it to my sister with a text that said, “should I buy this?”
Right there I stopped and reflected.
I needed someone else to verify that my purchase was worth it. Just like I needed a teenager to tell me my art was good before I could deem it worthy.
It’s so ingrained in me to seek out reassurance. I have super supportive family and friends. So much so that I look to them a lot when making decisions.
When I noticed myself seeking out reassurance more than I should’ve that week, I reminded myself this:
Reassurance is a crutch. It can be helpful at times, but when used too much it takes you away from your relationship with your own inner guidance system. It fuels doubt in your gut.
Think back to my story about the 8th grader. What do you know, do you do, do you make that is really good yet you don’t know it is until someone else tells you?
Think back to my story about my shopping experience. When do you look toward another person to verify that you’re on the right path…. even when you’re just buying a $20 sweater?
Every time we look outside ourselves for encouragement, validation, or reassurance we’re cheapening the value of our own voice, our relationship, and our trust with ourselves. I’m not saying that you should stop asking for advice or opinions, but you might want to bring awareness to how often you do so. Maybe you’re nothing like me. Maybe you know what you want and you don’t need anyone to tell you that you’ve made a good choice. If so, more power to you. But if not, I give you this.
You’re voice, your gut, your inner guidance is right.
She knows you.
She knows your highest Self. She’s guiding you and she’s begging you to listen to her. When it comes to big decisions, $20 sweaters, or your latest kitchen creation. She’s guiding you. Listen. She’s got a lot to say. And when you look outside yourself, cool, but always remember to turn back inside and fuel your relationship with your Self. It’s the best guidance, validation, and reassurance you can ever get. The more you listen, the more you’ll trust, and the farther you’ll go.
The only reassurance I need is from myself.
PS. This is my last post of 2018. Starting this week I’ll be enjoying a vacation back home with family and friends. But, Monday Mantra and Friday Digs will be back in full swing at the start of January. To all of you who read my weekly emails or type gmg into your browsers every week, thank you. From the bottom of my heart, thank you. I love being on this mindful journey with you. Have a Merry Christmas, Happy Holiday, and sweet and joyous celebrations all around. Most importantly, here’s to another mindful year—Happy 2019! See you then.