Recently, I was chatting with my friend Alex, and I mentioned that since leaving full-time university, for the first time, I’ve had time to reflect on myself and my personal development. As a full time student, I had been too busy to think about me, but now, circumstances allow me to review how I have developed as a thirty-six year old adult. I told Alex that I’m now busy ‘investing in myself.’ He asked, “So, how do you do that?” So, to answer his question, I’m writing this blog. I think sharing my experience will be useful to others too. Perhaps you can identify both with my struggle and methods to regain self confidence.
In 2016, I went through two experiences which led to a tipping point and prompted me to re-evaluate myself. Firstly, I went through intense isolation when I moved from Canada to S. Korea. I missed my friends in Canada and family in England, and found it challenging making new friends. Instead of seeking out new friends, I largely wallowed in loneliness.
Additionally, I found myself entangled in the most unhealthy romantic situation of my adult life. Due to some complexities, I couldn’t simply walk away from him. I allowed the situation to cause me excruciating emotional pain. Each day ground me down. I developed trouble sleeping, and for the first time, developed chest pains. I wondered if I was close to some kind of anxiety attack. I became a shell of the positive, funny and vivacious and person I’ve always been. I felt that happiness had been sucked out of my life! My close friends were incredibly worried, so something needed to change. I had to adapt to my new home and recover my self esteem asap.
As I began going through the process of loneliness as well as anxiety about my new romance, I began to watch vlogs on YouTube posted by an American fella based in Seattle called Clark Kegley (https://youtu.be/rh6MflkPPjQ). His blogs reach out to men in their twenties who want to improve themselves. Kegley focuses on two major themes: how to use journal writing to monitor your progress and reach for goals, as well as presentations reviewing books by authors like Tim Ferriss, Nathaniel Branden, Dale Carnegie, and Anthony Robbins to name a few. Kegley introduces many concepts in a manner easy to digest.
Through Kegley, I learned about Californian, Tony Robbins (https://youtu.be/IcSIzYIKAVo), and began listening to his live-recorded seminars. Many of the concepts that I will later talk about in Part Two, I heard from Tony Robbins. I’ve listened to hours of his seminars, particularly during my morning routines starting my day. Robbins helped me to rethink how I manage my own behaviour and take responsibility for my emotions, reactions, general happiness and the direction of where my life is headed. Listening to his seminars has been invaluable in equipping myself with knowledge about the psychology of human behaviour and understanding what I, and others, do, often without realizing.
Scrolling though Robbins’ YouTube videos, I discovered a fella called Evan Carmichael (https://youtu.be/uXfMe50bxuM). Carmichael produces frequent blogs that focus on building success by extracting pearls of wisdom from successful entrepreneurs, actors, famous personalities and so on, by compiling clips from interviews. This is akin to what Tony Robbins reported that he did prior to becoming a recognized lifestyle coach. That is, reading and learning from biographies. When I need I energy or motivation and am struggling to find it within myself, having access to and soaking in the advice of others is incredibly motivating. Carmichael also produces videos on goal setting, life style assessment and daily routines. I watch his videos almost daily.
In addition to watching videos from these three men, I also watch documentaries on Silicon Valley entrepreneurs, personalities like Virgin creator/director, Richard Branson, the late Steve Jobs, and Facebook creator, Mark Zuckerburg. I am interested to learn what drives successful people and what habits they cultivate. Finally, on the recommendation of my mother, I made a heart-felt plea to God to show me how to proceed. I believe that everything working together in tandem helped me break through my severe low point.
While recognizing I needed help, seeking out and equipping myself with knowledge was empowering, it all meant nothing if I didn’t take action. In Part Two, I will discuss the specific steps that I found most useful to regain my self esteem and put me on a path to unlimited self-development.
If you liked this blog, comment below and let me know one thing that you have done to seek external help! Who or what do you turn to to get advice? Please share, and standby for my follow-up blog, Part Two.