No Man Is An Island

Today is the day that I admit it. I am not superhuman. I am the best at everything I do. I make mistakes. Despite trying to pretend it isn’t true for my entire life, sometimes things get hard. Too hard.

I’d love to be able to tell you that my life is always great. I’d love to be able to say that I’m always on top of things and I’m always in control. Not necessarily the super-organised, efficient type of control because actually there’s something great about living with at least an element of spontaneity. No, I mean the type of control that underpins everything else. The control which means you have a place to sleep and money to pay the bills. The safety net. The plan B. That little extra you leave in the tank, just in case. Today, I can’t tell you those things.

People who know me well would probably describe me as being pretty self sufficient. I like to take control of providing for myself and my family. I like being self-reliant. I stand in good company with that attitude, and certainly see those views reflected in many of the people around me.

Over the last few months though, I’ve begun to understand how limiting and how restricting that attitude can be. Total self sufficiency and self reliance, without being superhuman, means there are a hell of a lot of bases to cover. Too many to be able to cover well. So what are the options? Give everything a half arsed attempt? Start everything, but finish nothing well? Neither sound like much fun to me.

Instead, for me at least, is the much harder option. To chip away at the pride which holds me back and refuses to give anything away. To acknowledge that there are people who are better placed than me to do the things that need to be done. To ask for and to accept help, whilst not allowing that to take away my own self worth or value. To know that I am who I am and not what I do.

I’ve found the last few months really tough. I’ve moved to a new city and left some great people behind. I’m working from home most of the time, and still adjusting to the changes that’s brought about. I’m learning to be a dad to a little girl who is changing every day. I’m selling a house, which is taking much longer than we hoped.

For some reason, I thought I would be able to take all of that in my stride and keep up with everything else I wanted to do. Well, I was wrong. It’s the people around me and my family who have picked up the slack and are pulling us through. In the vulnerability of letting other people in, life has become so much fuller. I’ve been surprised, not by how willing other people have been, but by the fading away of my fears around letting them in.

I guess it really is true what they say – no man is an island.

Photo Credit: Tambako the Jaguar

2 Comment(s)

  1. May 6, 2013 at 4:21 pm

    Golden-so true, no man is an island. Great Post!

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