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Monday On My Mind

I want to talk about the importance of reaching out to someone who might be on your mind. Perhaps you know they are going through a rough patch . . . an illness or loss, an injury or a hard time at work. Perhaps you just randomly thought of them. Not to get all woo-woo, but I believe that when this happens it’s a sign that you should check in with them. A phone call, a text, a message on Facebook . . . something to just say hi, hello, I’m thinking of you and I want to know how you are doing.

I think a lot of times when we think we should reach out to someone .  . .  we don’t. We ignore our intuition, we tell ourselves we don’t have time, we convince ourselves we would be bothering them, we give a false narrative that it wouldn’t make a difference anyway. I call bullshit. Those are excuses we make to let ourselves off the hook. It’s our own junk, whether it’s fear of rejection or just being an introvert, and it’s getting in the way of making connections with other humans. And those connections are so important. They are the bright spots in a world of drudgery. They create magic out of daily life. They make us feel whole and loved and needed.

Consider this: when you don’t reach out, when you don’t check in, when you don’t make the effort, what is the message you are sending? It’s not that you don’t want to bother them. It’s not that you think they might be too busy. It’s not that you think you might be intrusive. Nope. The message being receives is you don’t care about them. You have forgotten about them. You don’t need them.

I think we all know and recognize that we need each other. This year has taught us that, at least. Sometimes, we need to have a friend ask us how we are doing so that we can come clean and share our crap. Sometimes, we need to be the one who asks so that we can get out of our own head and think about someone else.

I urge you this week to consider who is weighing on your mind, who are you being called to reach out to, who are you missing. And when you identify that person, get in touch with them and ask how they are. The expression sharing is caring is corny, but true. Sharing means we aren’t alone. Sharing means we can go to the darkest, scariest thing our mind can conjure up and acknowledge it and release it. Sharing means love. And at the end of the day, love is what life is all about.

This Post Has 13 Comments

  1. I couldn’t agree with you more, Carole. If the last year has taught me anything, it’s that relationships are the most important thing in life. Even if someone is doing just fine, getting a call or a note from a friend can still brighten their day immensely.

    And thank you for the reminder as well. I have a friend who I just got a long email from who is due a response!

  2. True advice and well said, Carole! I almost always appreciate when someone checks in or just says they are thinking of me, especially during this last isolated year (and try and do the same in return).

  3. Oh, YES. This. This is always an important thing to do — and especially after this year (plus) of isolation. Thanks for this nudge to follow our intuition (and our hearts!) to reach out. XOXO

  4. Yes! A terrible thing happened last week and it could have involved me. It didn’t because we’re still hermiting at home like the pros we’ve become this last year. Can I tell you how surprised and filled with gratitude I was as my phone blew up for two hours with people “just checking in” from across town and across many states. Even the next day my nephew in the service shook loose from his overnight duties and contacted me before going to sleep. It helped make a disturbing experience a little better. May I add it’s not too late if you’re just learning about something they’ve experienced. And if it’s a hard thing, checking in later when they might not still be getting calls is a great time to do it. That might be the time they’re ready to stop saying “I’m ok.”

  5. I have learned this the hard way–an extreme example, maybe, but one I’ve regretted for decades. A friend and mentor popped into my mind one February evening, and I felt a pull to go to his house over in Haverhill. But I was a young teacher at the time, new to the school, with papers literally piled in my attic apartment. So I didn’t go. I didn’t think I had the time. And he died of a heart attack, home alone in his shower that night. So now I DO reach out, as soon as someone crosses my mind, my heart, and I just tell them so. A really awful way to learn that one. And a message worthy of reminders.

  6. If you want a friend, you have to be a friend, and consider me well reminded, Carole. Excellent post.

  7. Having been the recipient of a friend reaching out, I concur with your thoughts wholeheartedly! This is a brilliant post! Thank you so much for sharing it! (would you mind if I share it on my blog on Wednesday?)

  8. Wow! Did I ever feel like you were looking me right in the eye! Thanks for the kick to reach out!?

  9. It’s been a very hard time for so many of us, including myself. When I see a friend (or child) who I chat with go quiet, I try to reach out to make sure they are ok. Covid has been such an emotional roller coaster that has taken a toll on so many of us in different ways. Thank you for this post. <3

  10. Since I’ve been on full-time telework for over a year now, I really appreciate my colleagues who call me on Teams just to chat, to see how I’m doing, to vent about something, or ask my advice. I love Microsoft Teams! My agency started using it a few weeks before the shutdown last year and it has been a godsend! Apart from my many many meetings, I can chat with my buddy with whom I used to go for coffee every morning, though I think he wants to chat just to see my kitty Loki. I used it to have a virtual knit and natter with a friend in Sweden a couple of weeks ago.

    A sweet side effect of the shutdown is how close my sister-in-law and I have gotten. We’ve always had a rocky relationship because we are such different people, but the lockdown and my father’s death last month has shown me that she is a true sister to me.

  11. Going through a really rough work patch right now I came in to flowers on my desk from a wonderful co-worker. What a wonderful start to a Monday! It is important and we need to listen to our hearts. You rock Carole!

  12. You have inspired me to message a friend in the Twin Cities who is in hospice at her home due to metastasized breast cancer. Thank you!//

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