Fighting the Hermit Complex

Hello, my name is Destiny. I’m often shy, introverted, private, quiet, and too sensitive at times. I have a very small network of people that I would consider close to me.

hermit crab

In Stephen King’s The Tommyknockers, the main character, Bobbi Anderson, is a writer suffering from the hermit complex. She’s isolated, living alone on a large piece of land, just her and her best friend, a beagle that stays by her side.

It sounds like heaven, doesn’t it? 😉

Of course, as most of you know, Bobbi ends up finding something strange buried on her land, a thing jutting out of the ground. We don’t know what it is, but we understand it is something not good. There’s a certainty that this thing is evil in nature. It compels her, drives her almost to madness in her obsession to discover what it is.

Maybe Bobbi needed more friends. Maybe she needed a girlfriend she could visit and say, “Hey, am I going crazy?”

Of course, Bobbi doesn’t go to a girlfriend. She’s a loner. She suffers from the hermit complex.

I fight against the hermit complex every day. It’s not just a physical thing. It’s a state of mind. I internalize almost everything. If I’m uncomfortable, I’m going to tuck in my shell and ignore you.

I’m a writer. It makes me happy. It’s my dream come true. But, it takes a thick skin at times.

How about you? Are you an author? If you get a rejection letter, do you let it bring you down? Do you want to go and hide in your shell? How about when you get a bad review?

Even worse, are you hiding in fear of only the possibility of a rejection or bad review? Putting your writing out there takes guts. You are exposing yourself. You must accept the feedback, and some of it will be bad. That’s a promise.

Here’s another promise. To truly find your purpose, you need to face those fears that are blocking you. Chase your dreams. Follow your heart. Do the things that make you forget to eat. Do the things that make you want to get up every morning. Do the things that bring you joy. If that’s writing, then put that pen to paper right now.

Fight the hermit complex! Network with others in your field. Prepare yourself for success. You have to see it coming to get there. No more hiding!

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Published in: on September 19, 2017 at 7:35 am  Leave a Comment  
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Hello 2015! What’s going to happen this year?

I’m not big on resolutions. I’m the type to vow to eat healthy for the new year…skip that thought for January 1st because I have to snack during football…eat healthy for January 2nd, maybe the 3rd…and give up by January 4th. What can I say? I have no good excuse. I love to eat and I have no will power!

With that said, I think I we should all make a few goals for 2015. Serious, realistic, attainable goals. We need to get specific and hold ourselves accountable to them. Pretty much, I’m preaching to myself here, but I don’t want to feel alone, so I’ll drag my readers into this, too. 🙂

Professionally, I am going to get myself on a strict writing schedule and stick to it. That is tough for me working from home. It is too easy to fall into house chores instead of the work I’m supposed to be doing. The grocery store is much less crowded during the day before everyone else gets off work, you know? But, writing is my job. It has to come before anything else. I will make a realistic schedule that works for me and my family, and it will be a priority.

Personally, I do want to improve my health. I am going to make small goals throughout the year. Thinking too big in this area will just make me give up. I’m going to start with just one thing. I’m going to drink more water. I am going to carry one of those big insulated cups and fill it up at least four times during the day. Next month, I’ll add one more goal to improve my health.

I want to smile more, pray more, and worry much less! I will make time every morning to read God’s word and say a prayer to begin each day. My faith is what will guide me through the year.

I will choose not to let the small things bother me. That’s easier said than done, especially with a budding teenager in the house. I love my son more than anything. He is the light of my life, but something changed the moment he hit middle school. It is like his mouth has turned into some monstrous black hole full of sarcasm and back talk. His eyes changed, too. They roll around after everything I say. He doesn’t think it is funny at all when I suggest he go to an eye doctor and get that checked out. lol

Finally, I will choose to smile more. I will do it on purpose! Fake it until you make it, right?

Welcome 2015!

Published in: on January 6, 2015 at 10:05 am  Leave a Comment  

Thankful for the hardships

2014 has been a tough year. Sometimes, it’s too hard to appreciate the small things during the tough times. I probably didn’t appreciate much during a large part of the year, but I want to turn that around beginning today. I’m going to move forward with a spirit of gratitude.

Near the end of 2013, my husband and son were in a car wreck. Our camper was totaled. His truck was very close, but they decided to repair it. Thankfully, no one was hurt. That’s the important thing. I’m so, so grateful for that. Moments like those, make the world come to a stop, not because of what actually happened, but because of what could have.

Unfortunately, that wreck seemed to start a spiral of unfortunate events for my husband’s truck. It has been in the shop four times since that wreck. But still, I am so grateful because we’ve had the money to cover those expenses. Bad things happen. Sometimes, you have to take a time out from the stress of it all to appreciate how you’ve come through everything.

My stove broke. My air conditioner broke. Most recently, we discovered we have a water leak. All of the water lines are going to have to be dug up. This is still ongoing. Thankfully, my step-dad is a huge blessing in my life. He has been able to fix almost anything that has broken around here, and because he loves me, he works for free. 🙂 I’m so grateful for him.

My step-mom battled breast cancer and won! 🙂 My dad is battling leukemia and is doing great! 🙂 I have so much to be thankful for. My dog was diagnosed with cancer this year. We love her like a member of the family. We’re choosing not to put her through surgery because of her age. Right now, she is pain-free and happily snuggled up on her couch. It is a blessing that she seems to be doing so well.

My husband fell and shattered his knee cap this year. He was out of work for six months. Still, I am grateful. His knee was bad before he fell. Now, after surgery, recovery and rehab, his knee is stronger than it has been in a long time.

The hardest part of this year was losing a family member to cancer. She was an angel in my life. I could talk to her about anything. She was particularly close to my son. He walked on clouds around her. That is the way she made him feel. I will forever be grateful for the time I had her in my life.

It’s been a tough year, but I am so grateful. This is the month to give thanks. Don’t forget that, even if times are tough. 🙂

I am so grateful for my life! It hasn’t been easy lately, but my faith has brought me through it. 🙂

Published in: on November 7, 2014 at 10:05 am  Comments (2)  
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Let it go…

I can’t control everything. That shouldn’t be a big revelation, but maybe it is, because I’ve tried. Starting now, I’m letting go of the things beyond my control.

I’m going to embrace the part of life I can control – myself. That’s right, not my husband, not my friends, not even my son, just me. I need to stop trying to control the world around me and start looking within.

It’s a scary prospect – letting go. I’m terrified everything might just fall apart if I’m not directing up front, but that’s just my ego talking, isn’t it? I think if I can get beyond the fear, it will also be exhilerating, freeing. How wonderful will it feel to just let it go?

I’ve met folks out there that have such a great grasp on this ideal. Those that lead not with control, but by example. No matter what is going on around them, they have an inner peace that never waivers. I want to be one of those folks.

Isn’t that how the Bible tells us to live? I believe so. I also believe the only true inner peace is found through faith. If we truly believe, there is no need to fear.

So, this is my testimony today. I am going to find my peace through my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. If you feel the same, please find yours as well. You can give your heart to the Lord any time you choose, including right now.

Published in: on September 3, 2014 at 10:09 am  Leave a Comment  

Shut Up!

You can’t do anything right.

You are a bad person.

You will fail.

No one likes you.

We all have that crazy mantra in our head, that voice we hear that is our own. Maybe you hear the sentences above or maybe something totally different. Sometimes it is our own words, other times they are things people have said about us.

My son is getting to that age where he really pays attention to what everyone thinks of him. He is situationally shy and insecure at times when he never has seemed so before. I often ask him, “What are you thinking about yourself?”

I know my own inner voice can get negative sometimes, especially on those days when I’m tired or not feeling my best. The problem is that our thoughts and perceptions control how we live our lives. Our thoughts control who we are. We can never be too careful what we are thinking.

So, ask yourself, “Are my thoughts positive or negative?”

They need to be positive. If they aren’t, here’s the thing to do. Tell them to shut up!

Yeah, you might be saying? Just tell myself to shut up? Yes, that’s exactly what I’m saying.

You are in control of your life. If a negative thought slips through, open that mouth and speak a positive one out loud. We aren’t victims. We can make the choice of who we are and what we are going to do.

Let’s take control. Today, I choose to really enjoy being me. I like who I am. How about you?

Published in: on February 28, 2013 at 10:14 am  Leave a Comment  

A fresh beginning

A new year can be a fresh start, don’t you think? Or, maybe it’s just a great marking point for one. So, are you feeling optimistic for 2013?

If not, here’s some ideas I thought might help us all make 2013 a really great year.

1. Keep a gratitude journal and write down all the blessings you have in your life every day.

2. Try something new before the end of the month. It doesn’t have to be extravagant, maybe it’s just a new hairstyle. Just make sure it’s something you can feel excited about.

3. Get a new attitude. Every time you catch yourself thinking negatively, write down that negative thought, then write down an equally positive one. Purposely replace that negative thought with the positive one every time you catch yourself thinking it.

4. Find ways to help others. It will make you feel great!

5. Believe in a higher source than yourself. There’s a plan for your life. Great things may happen at any moment. Be prepared. Watch for the blessings that come your way.

Happy New Year, friends! 🙂 It’s going to be a great one. I do plan it so…

Published in: on January 2, 2013 at 12:37 pm  Leave a Comment  

I finally know what I’m looking for…

I have a confession to make. I’m a people-watcher in more than one aspect. My attention naturally waivers to fascinating people in a crowd — that overly happy lady drinking coffee and chatting on her cell phone about her day, the man jogging by at a steady pace, the teenager with his chin held high and proud.

I also love watching people on TV. Weight loss success stories fascinate me. Tribute stories to those that have given so much of themselves to others warms my heart. Survival stories interest me more than anything else.

I started wondering…why am I secretly tuned into the lives of those around me?

I finally know. I’m looking for something, and I finally know what that something is. I’m looking for strength.

I want to know where others find their inner strength. Why is the woman on the phone drinking coffee so happy? Where does that glow come from? Where did the man jogging find his motivation? Why is the teenager so sure of himself?

So, here is my question to you: where do you find your inner strength?

Published in: on November 6, 2011 at 9:04 pm  Comments (2)  

Take a chance on someone you don’t know.

Author Unknown –

This is a beautiful and touching story of love and perseverance.  Well worth the read.  At the prodding of my friends I am writing this story.

My name is Mildred Honor and I am a former elementary school music teacher from Des Moines, Iowa. I have always supplemented my income by teaching piano lessons – something I have done for over 30 years.

During those years I found that children have many levels of musical ability, and even though I have never had the pleasure of having a prodigy, I have taught some very talented students. However, I have also had my share of what I call ‘musically challenged’ pupils – one such pupil being Robby…

Robby was 11 years old when his mother (a single mom) dropped him off of his first piano lesson. I prefer that students (especially boys) begin at an earlier age, which I explained to Robby. But Robby said that it had always been his mother’s dream to hear him play the piano, so I took him as a student.

Well, Robby began his piano lessons and from the beginning I thought it was a hopeless endeavor.  As much as Robby tried, he lacked the sense of tone and basic rhythm needed to excel.  But he dutifully reviewed his scales and some elementary piano pieces that I require all my students to learn.  Over the months he tried and tried while I listened and cringed and tried to encourage him.

At the end of each weekly lesson he would always say ‘My mom’s going to hear me play someday’.  But to me, it seemed hopeless, he just did not have any inborn ability.

I only knew his mother from a distance as she dropped Robby off or waited in her aged car to pick him up.  She always waved and smiled, but never dropped in.

Then one day Robby stopped coming for his lessons.  I thought about calling him, but assumed that because of his lack of ability he had decided to pursue something else.  I was also glad that he had stopped coming – he was a bad advertisement for my teaching!

Several weeks later I mailed a flyer recital to the students’ homes.  To my surprise, Robby (who had received a flyer) asked me if he could be in the recital. I told him that the recital was for current pupils and that because he had dropped out, he really did not qualify.  He told me that his mother had been sick and unable to take him to his piano lessons, but that he had been practicing. ‘Please Miss Honor, I’ve just got to play’ he insisted.  I don’t know what led me to allow him to play in the recital – perhaps it was his insistence or maybe something inside of me saying that it would be all right.

The night of the recital came and the high school gymnasium was packed with parents, relatives and friends.  I put Robby last in the program, just before I was to come up and thank all the students and play a finishing piece.  I thought that any damage he might do would come at the end of the program and I could always salvage his poor performance through my ‘curtain closer’.

Well, the recital went off without a hitch, the students had been practicing and it showed.  Then Robby came up on the stage.  His clothes were wrinkled and his hair looked as though he had run an egg beater through it.  ‘Why wasn’t he dressed up like the other students?’  I thought, ‘Why didn’t his mother at least make him comb his hair for this special night?’

Robby pulled out the piano bench, and I was surprised when he announced that he had chosen to play Mozart’s Concerto No. 21 in C Major.  I was not prepared for what I heard next.  His fingers were light on the keys, they even danced nimbly on the ivories.  He went from pianissimo to fortissimo, from allegro to virtuoso; his suspended chords that Mozart demands were magnificent!  Never had I heard Mozart played so well by anyone his age.

After six and a half minutes he ended in a grand crescendo, and everyone was on their feet in wild applause!  Overcome and in tears, I ran up on stage and put my arms around Robby in joy.  ‘I have never heard you play like that Robby, how did you do it?

‘Through the microphone Robby explained: ‘Well, Miss Honor…remember I told you that my mom was sick?  Well, she actually had cancer and passed away this morning.  And well…she was born deaf, so tonight was the first time she had ever heard me play, and I wanted to make it special.’

There wasn’t a dry eye in the house that evening. As the people from Social Services led Robby from the stage to be placed in to foster care, I noticed that even their eyes were red and puffy. I thought to myself then how much richer my life had been for taking Robby as my pupil.

No, I have never had a prodigy, but that night I became a prodigy…of Robby. He was the teacher and I was the pupil, for he had taught me the meaning of perseverance and love and believing in yourself, and may be even taking a chance on someone and you didn’t know why.

Published in: on July 20, 2011 at 9:21 am  Leave a Comment  

Do you know how to love?

Love is so much more than an emotion. Feelings come and go, folks. Love requires more than joy and butterflies in the stomach.

Do you know how to love?

Love is an action verb. It is something you have to do, and that means it won’t always be easy. Even more than that, it is something you have to choose to do.

That’s what it means to show love. People can say it all day long, but you know someone truly loves you when they show you. Their actions speak much louder than words.

I have a challenge for you today. Do something for your loved ones. Choose it and do it purposefully. Do it for no other reason than to brighten their day. Don’t expect anything in return. And, guess what? Yep, you got it. That’s love.

Published in: on July 5, 2011 at 10:15 am  Comments (1)  

Be bold, be brave, ask for what you need.

Do you ask for what you need?

I know. It seems such a bold thing to do, right? Yep, it is, but we should do every single day in every single moment.

So, why don’t we?

Maybe we’re afraid we’ll be told no. That’s a possibility. Then again, it’s nothing we haven’t heard before. We can handle hearing no, don’t you think?

Let’s dig deeper. Could it be that we don’t say what we need because we expect people to know without us having to tell them? Uh-oh. I’m definitely guilty of this one, particularly with my husband.

Go even deeper. Do we keep our needs to ourselves, because we can control that form of disappointment? Let’s face it. Disappointment hurts, but like with anything, it’s much less scary if we have some control over it.

When we control the disappointment, we also control the outcome. We can choose to push that person away when they don’t give us what we need. Then, the best part of all, we can feel righteous about it, because we knew it was going to happen.

Wow. I’m really going there this morning, aren’t I?

It really all comes down to fear, doesn’t it? Let’s let the fear and the need to control go. Be bold, be brave, and ask for what you need. Hey, you might actually get it!

I’ll start… *Gulp* Here I go… I’ll have to tell you how it ends up later. 🙂

Published in: on April 22, 2011 at 8:11 am  Comments (2)  
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