Be your own worst enemy or your best friend

It’s so awesome! I’ve accidentally led myself down a trail of thought which has solved the major problems currently holding me back in life.

Genesis by Niick Verron (statue of John Hampden)

Genesis by Nick Verron (statue of John Hampden)


Yesterday, I was writing some notes about what to say in the short film I’ve been asked to do. This is for the charity UKABIF, who have asked me to talk about the daily issues that my brain injury has caused. I will share some of these notes:

I have been so focussed on making progress with my physical recovery and have had great success with this. People have often said, “You should live in the moment, make the most of now.” Although I agree with this in normal circumstances, I saw a better investment of my time being to improve my quality of life for years to come. All my hard work paid off, leaving me with so many options for my future. While my “re-ability” (my rebellion against disability) skyrocketed, I didn’t notice my self-esteem dwindling away. As I didn’t have time for a normal life or any social interaction, the prospect of this has become very scary. Where I’ve been allowed to spend the last few years alone behind closed doors, I now don’t have the confidence to go past them into the unknown, where things can go wrong and people can judge me. I’ve only just acknowledged this problem and desperately want a social life again, but where do I start?

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I like to think that I can give quite good advice. To anybody else except myself! Realising this (after recently telling somebody here on WordPress), I decided to imagine that somebody else had written the notes above. Suddenly the problems which had swamped me, restricting me leaving my “self-imposed prison”, seemed like child’s play to overcome! I looked at them objectively and did a spreadsheet containing weekly goals. Things such as new places I have to see; I specified a minimum of three per week, but that more equated to “super happy fun time” (I did say it was child’s play!) I then imagined a “therapist” was giving me the spreadsheet, and saw it as a challenge to overcome.

It’s really funny how all this happens the day I post the paperwork for something I’ve tried to do to help people. Is this karma at work? When I was watching the documentary The Brain with David Eagleman, he talks about just how much neuroscience can learn when a brain operates outside of normal parameters. My brain lost the concept of normal parameters on 4th July, 2009! I got a call yesterday from someone representing Thomas Willis Brain Collection, explaining how they don’t normally get people volunteering to donate their brain, but how grateful they are and how this may help ease the suffering of hundreds of people to come. Apparently they’re even generous enough to wait until you’re finished with it! I must say, it does make me smile to know that I can continue to help people long after I’m dead πŸ™‚

I have covered my wardrobe with motivational quotes to start the day with. One of my favourites (not just because of the scantily cladΒ lady!), is:

Image112

About Nick Verron

Lead Ambassador for the Royal Bucks

Posted on February 17, 2016, in My blog, Top Posts and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 78 Comments.

  1. Thanks so much for sharing this post, Nick. I, too, have been living for years in relative isolation for slightly different reasons, but the result is the same. I’m terrified of going out into the world where people can judge me and possibly reject me. I don’t seem to have your ability to imagine myself as a best friend or therapist giving myself loving advice. I do force myself out into the world anyway.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Hello! My mum has fondly mentioned you on a number of occasions. Hearing about what you’ve overcome, to achieve such educational success has been a large contributor to my seeking education. For this I must say a big thank you! To reach your goal must have taken extraordinary courage. Regarding people judging you, the most helpful piece of advice I’ve been given, is when my psychologist took me off guard. He has used some advanced psychological warfare tactics, so threw me when he just said, “Why do you care?”

      Liked by 2 people

      • Excuse me for butting in here, Nick & Eilis, but I love it when counsellors/psychologists suddenly throw you off balance like that – it makes you see things so differently. ‘Why do you care?’ is such a good question in this context! I don’t say that lightly, as often I do care too much what people think of me, but it’s a great question to ask ourselves (as long as we’re not causing harm, of course) πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m sure I’m repeating myself by saying how much you inspire me!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Great post Nick! I hope you do overcome all your hangups and listen to Professor Nick Vernon! He gave some good advice there!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Great post, Nick. Love the backdrop – reaching for the stars! Good one.J

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Your words and your life are inspiring!\

    Like

  6. Annette Rochelle Aben

    RE-ability! I love that. I learn so much from what you share, thank you for your candor, generosity and inspiration.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hah! It is so much easier to give good advice to others than to accept and act on it ourselves, isn’t it? It seems to be true for many of us but I wonder why that is? Why won’t we take our own good advice? I like your idea of imagining someone else is giving you the advice – hope it works.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Is it rude to reference the next comments? I honestly meant to write what Erika said. I thought I had done and she was just rewording what I’d written. But to summarise, our situations envelop us and stop us seeing what’s right in front of our eyes.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. We mostly can give others good advice because their struggles are not our struggles and we have also the necessary distance to their struggles. But when we are struggling ourselves we are in the midst of the mud. It is when we get distance and look at the issue (like you did) when we are able to rise up and give ourselves the answer! I don’t know if that makes sense here. Just came to my mind. Great and inspiring post, Nick!

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Hey man, with what you’ve already overcome, persevered through, and eventually won, you should have anything BUT a confidence problem. You’ve accomplished something not many would, or could. I believe you can do anything you want to do. You’re an inspiration!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Great post and I can resonate with what you are saying, but pleased you gave yourself a talking to..I do that all the time πŸ˜‰ ..I think we all have a public face, it’s what’s behind the smile people don’t see isn’t it? But hey ho, ditch the logic and do what you are doing , it will come πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

  11. It’s always terrifying to put yourself out there publicly – took me more than a decade of teaching to gain the confidence I needed to project I really knew what I was talking about. How about taking a course or two – you’ll meet some new people, get to interact. have you ever thought about becoming a psych counselor?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ok, that’s a bit freaky! I have a meeting today about doing a counseling course, with a view todoing more in depth a more in depth psychology course! Yes your “social reflection” changes everything doesn’t it? How we perceive ourselves affects his others’ do

      Like

  12. Nick, those inner demons that work against us are hard to overcome. This post tells me you are ready to tackle you demons and tell them to hit the road. Stepping out of one’s comfort zone is always difficult, and you have good reason to feel the way you do. Use your spreadsheet and to keep yourself on track, put your activities into a blog post each week. We are here to cheer you on. Hugs, my friend.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Hey Nick, love the photo in your post, it’s like seeing the light. You really are an inspiration, even if you think otherwise. “Feel the fear and do it anyway” is one of my favorite motivational quotes. We’re all afraid in life and we all hold ourselves back but when you go through something as hard as you have, there’s nowhere to go but forward. Warmest wishes Nick.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Another great post, Nick. With your determination, I have no doubt you’ll reach your goals. A long time ago I decided to never worry about what others think of my decisions. A person shouldn’t carry that baggage, that fear, through life. I decide what’s right for me and forge ahead. I listen to advice but decide what works with me. If that’s a photo you took at the top of the blog, it’s remarkable. πŸ™‚ — Suzanne

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s so liberating when you just live for yourself and have confidence in your actions. I’m only getting a taste of that liberation but it’s highly addictive! I too take onboard options, but still come to my own conclusions. That’s something I take pride in! Yes, it is my photo thank you☺

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Love your inspiration Nick. Sometimes stepping out of the box and looking in does give us a new perspective. It’s like our writing; sometimes I write a piece and forget about it, look back at it and say, ‘Did I write that?’ in sheer amazement. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Excellent post Nick thank you for sharing. And I love the poster. ive had some serious things to go through mentally and physically and you sharing makes all the difference. Thanks Nick.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Your advice to yourself sounds very sensible, as does the agreement you’ve reached with Thomas Willis Brain Collection over the timing of your donation. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  18. You’re displaying raw courage and strength, just keep on keeping on and the light burning.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. You’ve amazed us yet again, Nick! So pleased to be given a dose of your inspiration. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Being good at giving advice and yet not following that advice my self…sounds so familiar, mate. I think I’m a bugger for that. I get so wrapped up in helping others so much that I often forget about myself, which I suppose is a kind of therapy, in a weird sort of way.

    I love helping others, have done all my life, always put others happiness well before my own. I love to see other people happy; I feed off it,I think, (maybe I’m a junkie😱). I was often told by close friends that I was too kind hearted for my own good but I could never accept that. Sure there were some who would take advantage of me but if I could help even one person then, to me, it was worth it.

    I love the idea of them letting you finish with your brain before they take it! Kind old buggers aren’t they.

    Hope the film goes well, keep me posted, please.

    Be strong, be well and Keep Smiling 😊 Nick.

    Liked by 1 person

  21. You’ll be fabulous at counselling, Nick. Because a big part of it is instinct and getting to understand what might be helpful to others. I used to tell patients who were very critical of themselves, to try and think what they would tell somebody who came to them and explained what they’d just told me. Would they tell them they were good for nothing or they should just give up? No, indeed. Many of us can be very kind to others but very harsh on ourselves. Looking forward to this part of your journey.

    Liked by 1 person

    • How thoroughly reassuring to hear that I’m on the right track! I’m a “creature of instinct”; my hypervigilance, when not in its acute state, is very beneficial because it allows me great people skills. I’ve only recently worked out how this is directly responsible for shaping unconscious decisions based on things like body language etc. Forgive my ignorance, but you sound like you’re talking from experience. If so, is there any reading you can recommend to me, to better understand the fundamental concepts of counselling?

      Like

  22. I think it is wonderful that you are now starting to take your own advice, Nick. You have come so far it would be a shame to let your fear of being judged stop you. It is easy to want to stay wrapped up in your own little cocoon (I know, as I get like it too), but you have so much to offer other people, and indeed you have already done so much to help others.
    I wish you all the best, Nick. Never forget what an inspiration you are to so many πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

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