Turning Insult Into Strength
How are you doing? ❤️
Keeping a blog and newsletter has allowed me to connect and stay in touch with beautiful people worldwide.
But the flip side of my public presence is that it also exposes me to digs, unsolicited advice, and critiques of my character and way of life, often wrapped into unsuspecting emails.
I’ve come a long way from dealing with such messages.
The last time I received one, though, it had the potential of spoiling much more than my breakfast.
I was amid a highly creative upside, completing a side project, writing a blog post, starting a new project at work, and musing about the topic for today’s letter.
What is worse is that the message was from someone I know. Not just that. A woman. An older woman. Someone I thought to be wise. Someone I hoped had my back.
She slung a mega knife.
And I was furious.
It took all my strength not to reply with a thorough list of counterattacks.
But I didn’t.
Instead, I fake replied.
I wrote an uncensored draft that I never sent, which allowed me to temper the worst edges of my anger.
Then, I kept reminding myself of The (Wo)Man in the Arena.
Later, I took out my sparkles folder with compliments and kind messages I once received, and I reread them all.
I refocused on love. Not letting my heart harden, not allowing myself to detach.
I replied to the batch of sweet messages I received with extra care, putting more time and thought into them and ensuring the senders would recognize my gratefulness.
I let a night pass.
The following morning, I replied, explaining how the message made me feel—never attacking. Vowing to myself, I wouldn’t engage in argument tennis. No matter what, this would be my only message.
Eventually, with the right headspace for it, I took the time to sit in silence, tracing my initial response, following the anger, the sadness, curious about where it would lead me and what I could learn from it.
Most importantly, I never stepped one foot out of the arena. No, I pulled up my drafts, and I kept writing. I finished my project. I bought two more books, insisting on being myself, on keeping learning, growing. And oh yeah, I stumbled upon a subject for this month’s letter.
Finally, I let go. Calmer. Wiser. Stronger. For having turned insult into strength.
Over the last few weeks, I’ve been organizing a retreat. It’s been something that I wanted to do for a while now, and the girls from The Knitting Club gave me a chance to do so.
Next month, I’ll have a post ready, sharing all the details of the making of the retreat and the site. But for now, here’s a sneak preview of Slow Retreats · The Reset Edition.
Quote That’s On My Mind
Beware those too apathetic to strive for important things as they ultimately instill indifference, swaying so many independent people from their path of greatness. And so let us stay on our path. Let us choose the strenuous life, taking pride and finding honor in our struggles and our contributions. We will not fear the exhaustion and anxieties that magnificent dreams and unceasing hard work can bring. We will keep a joyous heart even as we toil, for our toils bring us toward that which we find meaningful. Let us humbly pass by the watchers and the aimless, the bored and the bellyaching. They have nothing to offer but distraction and useless comment. Let us make ours a higher cause than comfort, a greater calling than mediocrity. We have duties to complete, initiatives to begin, battles to fight, real victories to celebrate. And so forward we go with strength and fire. –Brendon Burchard, The Motivation Manifesto
And an invite to join me in the arena,