I’ve been pondering the direction of my work over the past few weeks. I’ve spent days feeling like it’s all so messy and I have no idea what I’m doing — and then it hit me that I remind myself (a lot) that life is messy, and perhaps it’s okay that this is, too. So, in the spirit of learning in the messiness of life, I’m looking to make some updates and wanted to share initial thoughts.
As I’ve done more talks with parent audiences over the past few months, a common theme I’ve heard is that we’re looking for safe spaces to talk about real life. Places to bounce around ideas with other adults without feeling judged or told what to do. And, while perhaps not spoken as much out loud though something hoped for — the reminder that we’re all doing okay and that it’s okay if life doesn’t look or feel perfect. It doesn’t mean we’re failing; it means we’re human. And life IS messy.
So with this in mind + as I think about what’s most helpful in keeping my own sanity day-to-day (and sometimes it’s a close one!), I’m going to be expanding on what I’ve been doing here with robinmassey.com and Skip the Box.
To start, beginning this week I’ll be trying out a daily email Monday-Friday (you can sign up here: http://eepurl.com/c1eSOH), continuing to bounce around ideas about the real life skills and tools that I found mission critical to learn going into adulthood (and regularly be reminded of now, because sometimes I forget). In addition to these social-emotional learning and mental health-related real life skills and topics, I’m also going to add in ponderings related to money, other people, and careers (other areas I’ve found it important to learn more and/or expand my perspective on).
Note that I’m no medical professional, CPA, or any other sort of expert, nor am I trying to be one. Rather, my goal is to bring up topics, ideas, and places in life where the teen and young adult years saw struggling and flailing about, in order to help spark conversations and ideas we can share with our teens to help them expand their perspectives (and roll around ourselves — while it’d be nice, the learning doesn’t stop when we hit adulthood!).
I also remember having a knee-jerk “yeah, whatever” reaction to my parents and most authority figures by the time I was in my later teens and early twenties — I was tired of feeling like I was being told what to do. So even though I actually needed help (and there were people around me willing to help and with great info), I wasn’t open to it from anyone who was a “professional” or a parent related to me. I was, however, open to hearing stories (and then ideas) from spaces that felt a little messier, vulnerable, real, and human, and this ultimately was my way into getting the support I needed — stories and ideas primed the way for me to decide for myself that I needed some help (and that those “professionals” and parents might have some use). Thus, I offer this “I’m not your parent or ‘professional’ — I’m a hot mess sometimes, too,” space to help as we support our kids into adulthood.
It’s not about getting it right, perfect, whatever. It’s about trying, little by little, bit by bit. There is magic in baby steps.
As of my thoughts right now, themes for each day will be as follows:
-Money (and Other People and Career Thoughts, too) Monday
-TBD Tuesday (Robin’s choice)
-Solid Ground Wednesday (about self-care and working on a solid foundation)
-Mind Your Thoughts Thursday (looking at the thoughts we’ve got rolling around in our heads, which impact our actions and then the results we see)
-Feel It Friday (on getting comfortable with and learning to manage our feelings and emotions)
Some days I may bring in a teen perspective to help translate my thoughts into teen-speak. I’ll probably also do more talks (and perhaps record and share them, too!). Other additions, subtractions, and modifications are likely — we’ll see where things go as we go.
A few logistics before we close out:
On privacy policies (per the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation):
My commitment in this work includes keeping any submitted data (including names and email addresses) safe. I do not share any information; it is used for sending these newsletters, info, and updates on Skip the Box and robinmassey.com. For any third party applications used (such as PayPal for payments or MailChimp for newsletters), I aim to find services with the same high standards of confidentiality. If you have any questions, send over an email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
On the daily/weekly emails:
Want to sign up? Hop over to http://eepurl.com/c1eSOH
And if you find that the emails are hitting home and you feel they’d be of use to a friend, please feel free to share!
Life is messy, we’re doing okay, and baby steps are magic. 🙂