What was the best decision you made in 2020?

Decisions, decisions, decisions

What was the best decision I made in 2020?

This was the question posed in a small blogging group I’m involved in. We have come to trust each other and I know I feel entirely comfortable being honest with these friends, most I’ve never met in person, only through Zoom!

2020 has been one of those years hasn’t it?

The question made me stop and think. After mulling it over for a while I decided to be totally honest and share these words.

The best decision I made this year was…..to ask for help.

Help

Help from my family and friends; my physiotherapist; the lovely lady who gives great massages and challenges me during our chats; my blogging cheerleaders and the big one – my therapist, psychologist, counsellor – call her what you will.

Help – Photo by Anna Tarazevich on Pexels.com

Yes I had to ask for professional help this year. I’m not ashamed to say it, but I do feel vulnerable admitting it to you, and to myself for that matter. I’ve been though a lot in my life but it has been a culmination of these events that got me to this point, on top of the year we’ve had!

The year started out well, we were in England visiting our daughter and her family, including little Dottie who was born earlier that year at 25 weeks gestation (that was a traumatic enough event on its own).

The year has ended with the death of my mother-in-law and me turning 60.

Then while we were in cold wintery England, the bushfires back at home came onto our radar and at one stage it seemed we were in serious danger of losing our house, but thankfully the wind changed and we had a house to return home to. Others weren’t so lucky, losing homes, equipment, stock, and in some cases their lives. It was an awful, awful time.

We returned home in mid January to a shell shocked community but in true country style people were bouncing back, helping each other, collecting donations, fundraising for those who had lost everything and helping to rebuild. We’re a resilient lot.

We celebrated 40 years of marriage, welcomed our first grandson into our family and then COVID-19 hit.

With lots of other family and personal health issues emerging during the year, more loss and grief, I found I was struggling, so I reached out for help in the form of counselling sessions with a psychologist over Skype. It was a wise friend who suggested I might benefit from talking to a professional after I had unloaded my worries onto her, and many others also had to put up with me during this time. Luckily I have supportive friends.

And she was right. It has helped and is still helping me.

Support – Photo by Anna Tarazevich on Pexels.com

I know I’m strong, but I just couldn’t keep going the way I was feeling. I was stressed and miserable although I tried to soldier on – I’m one of those people pleaser, eldest daughter types, when all is said and done! It’s been a tough decade in lots of ways and I was grieving for so many things.

I am learning how to look at my problems in a different way, not catastrophising things so much, not thinking too far ahead, dealing with what I can and not asking ‘Why?’ all the time. Sometimes the asking ‘why’ would send me down a rabbit hole I couldn’t come out of and with no real clear answer anyway.

It’s certainly been an interesting time and I’m writing this to let you know we can all benefit from asking for help sometimes. It’s not being weak.

I am real, I’m vulnerable and I’m being honest with myself.

So what would your answer to the question be?

Thanks for being with me this year and I hope we can continue our friendship into 2021.

Deb xx


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40 Replies to “What was the best decision you made in 2020?”

  1. You know, I can’t answer this question off the top of my head. The fact that I need to think about it so much says a great deal to me. I feel like I didn’t make any good decisions last year (which cannot be true and which also says a lot). Thank you for opening my eyes to this. And thank you for this personal post. Asking for help is brave, not shameful, and more of us should do it, IMO. It’s tough for us soldier-on types to ask for help. Here’s to your continued health. Cheers!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I think it is great that you provided your story and reaching out for counseling. The support of therapy is so important and “normalizing” the use of therapy allows others to know it’s okay to reach out to counselors for that help. I think the best things I did this year was to read more because it allowed me to be part of other worlds and learn from others. I also think that not comparing myself to others was also helpful to my mental health. I do a pretty good job being myself. I do not need to try to be someone else 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Such a great comment, thanks. Reading more is good for escaping our own world into another and I spent a lot of time reading too. Not comparing ourselves to others is something we all need to learn so I’m glad you recognised this trait. All the best for 2021!

      Like

  3. It’s such a hard thing to do, yet, as you’ve pointed out, so important. I’m hopeless at it and struggle until I’m drowning, have a meltdown and throw all my toys out of the cot, and start again. It would be so much more effective to talk to someone instead.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Having benefited myself from years of therapy, and tune ups as I refer to them from time to time, I applaud your decision to seek professional help Deb. We do so much to take care of our physical health, why would our mental health be different. I also applaud you for sharing the fact with your readers. Showing that asking for help is a normal process in healthy living allows others to make that positive step as well. I wish you good health in 2021 and am sending big hugs and positive energy across the miles.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for sharing your experiences with me Sue, I had no idea! It does seem strange the imbalance between our physical health and our mental health, but thankfully that seems to be changing a little. Love getting your hugs and positivity from across the miles 🙂 Take care and stay well over there x

      Liked by 2 people

  5. Very brave post, Deb, and as has been mentioned, it has great potential to help others. How awesome of you! One of the best things I ever did as a young adult was go to a psychotherapist over a period of time. She helped me beyond anything I could have ever imagined. It’s too bad that going to a therapist is still often considered taboo. Warmest blessings to you and yours for a much more pleasant new year! 🌞

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I admire you for writing this post and pressing the ‘publish’ button, Debbie. We all like to think ourselves as being invincible, yet we all have weak points that we try our best to cover up because showing them would make us look weak. But it’s the complete opposite. Those who seek help are the strong ones; not hiding from view or giving a false sense of being to others.

    Your post took me back to my early days of blogging. I was on one of the online WordPress blogging courses, and the teacher told us to write and publish a post about something others did not know about us. I wrote and published a post about being dyslexic. I was completely bowled over by the lovely responses I got from the rest of the class.

    In answer to the question, the best decision I made this year was to follow the scientist’s rules and advice and not be tempted to break the rules. On a couple of occasions, I almost did, but my ‘will’ power won out.

    Happy New Year.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Well done for seeking help! From my own experience I know that the most difficult part is to be honest with yourself and admit that you need to talk to someone. It’s good that you have friends who helped you in the right direction and that you’re getting the help you need. Take care, and I hope 2021 is a good year for you.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I’ve been there, so I know exactly what you mean. That was my reaction after I’d ‘come out’ too, and it is amazing how supportive people can be if we just ask! You take care too.

        Liked by 2 people

  8. Hi Deb – I think counsellors are worth their weight in gold – being able to work through your thoughts with someone who isn’t trying to “fix” you or minimize what you’re going through is a godsend. I know that talking to Ross (my own personal counsellor!) made all the difference when I was trying to work my way through the trauma and fallout from that awful job. Admitting we need a sounding board and someone to offer some rational and thoughtful guidance is never a weakness – in fact, I think it’s a strength that’s hugely under-rated. xxx

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Deb I can fully understand why you felt the need to ask for help during this dreadful year. In my opinion you made a very wise decision. It’s a decision that is more a sign of strength than weakness. Let’s hope 2021 is a better year. Happy New Year to you and your family Deb. Looking forward to more bloggy connection with you in 2021

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for understanding Jennifer, it really was one of those years and I could feel myself slipping. I didn’t consider it as a sign of strength at first but now I do! Looking forward to connecting more during the year. Hope you are keeping well xx

      Like

  10. Hi, Deb – I am so glad that you decided to write and share this post. I wholeheartedly agree with Carol. You may never know how much your words have helped someone. My bet is that your wise words here will help many.
    As you already know my answer to your title question, I will leave you with a wish for you and your family to have a very happy and healthy year ahead!

    Liked by 2 people

  11. I’m so glad you were able to seek out help and that it is helping! It sounds like you’ve had a lot of things to process in this year alone. It takes courage to ask for help. Good for you!

    Best decision for 2020? It wasn’t really a decision as far as I’m concerned, but given the behavior of others, I guess it was. My best decision was to listen to the experts on how to protect myself from Covid. We have stayed home, and when we do have to go out, we follow the precautions. I realize that’s not very profound, but still, it was the best decision.

    Michelle
    https://mybijoulifeonline.com

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi Michelle, thanks for your comment and yes it does courage to ask for help and then to talk about it afterwards! We might look as if we’re coping OK on the outside but on the inside it’s a different case.
      I’m so glad to hear you’ve been taking precautions for staying safe during the pandemic – the very best decision to make! All the best for 2021.

      Like

  12. Asking for help, such a simple thing, and so hard to do. Thanks for giving us the courage to step out of our comfort zone and reach out to others. My best decision was joining a writing group on Zoom and simular to you these people have become friends and great sources of support and encouragement. Great post Debbie, Happy New Year, C

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Cheryl, I’m so pleased you’ve found a writing group and that you are enjoying new friendships as a result. It’s been a year for doing things differently! Happy New Year to you 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Thank you for sharing the courage that you had this year. I know my best decision pales in light of yours, but it was not to fly to the UK at the start of March to see my brother before he died. Not only would I not have got there before he passed away, but the stress of getting there and the panic of getting back before lockdown, would have overwhelmed me. He hated fuss, so I know I made the right decision. Wishing you all the very best for 2021.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you! I didn’t see it as courage necessarily at first, but can now see how it is a form of being brave. I feel for you with the decision you had to make about travelling to see your brother. It’s hard! My heart goes out to you. We had plans to be in UK with our daughter as a family this year but I really don’t know when we will get over there again. All the best for a happier 2021.

      Like

  14. Thank you for sharing and normalizing these life experiences and feelings. You may never know how much your words have helped someone.
    What helps me is thinking each morning when I wake of these words from the Bible: “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases. His mercies never come to an end. They are new every morning. Great is Your faithfulness O Lord.” And I also remind myself of this fav verse: “This is the day the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it.” Scripture is my truest comfort and soul soothing practice. I guess I use it as others would meditate.
    You’ve had so much to deal with this year, and this is a beautiful and encouraging post Deb! Do you mind if I reblog it early in January?
    Looking forward to a brighter 2021. 🥂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks very much for your kind words and thoughts Carol. You have been a lovely supporter of my blog and I truly appreciate it. I would be honoured if you would reblog it if you think it might help others in some way. I’m so glad it came across as encouraging! Happy New Year to you x

      Liked by 1 person

  15. It seems sad that, while we wouldn’t think twice about going to the doctor for a sprain, or a sore toe, or a million other physical issues, we hesitate to go to a professional when we are struggling with our thoughts and/or feelings. Those challenges are just as real and shouldn’t carry any stigma. Good for you for realizing that you don’t have to deal with these things alone. Happy New Year!

    Liked by 2 people

  16. Bravo Deb! It does take courage to let our vulnerability show and your post will certainly help others to find the courage to ask for help and support when they need it. It doesn’t mean we aren’t strong, it just means we are human and like everyone we need to reach out for help at times. You’ve had an incredibly difficult couple of years, Deb and I’ve always admired your ability to keep smiling and pushing on. You are strong and inspiring and I’m very proud to have you as my friend. Thank you for writing this post to share how you are feeling and also to help others. Happy New Year – you certainly deserve it. xx

    Liked by 2 people

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