After living in New York City for over 6 years, I’ve become pretty jaded. Not many things get me riled up about this bustling town…but for ONE exception .
I’m sure it needs no introduction, but the Humans of New York blog kicks some serious booty. It reminds us of our fragile humanity, how everyone has a story, and how when it all comes down to it – we fundamentally want to help one another. It’s the happiest place on the internet. And what’s more than that – it’s a blog that has seriously changed lives.
Take, for instance, the current saga centered around a young man named Vidal. I won’t get into all the incredible details, ( you can find them here – and I urge you to do so!) but Vidal is a young man that Brandon (the founder of Humans of New York) met on a street in Brownsville, Brooklyn. Brandon asked him who the most influential person has been in his life, and he mentioned his school principal, Mrs. Lopez. To make a very long and incredible story short, Humans of New York was able to raise over a million dollars for Mrs. Lopez’s school, send Vidal on scholarship to college, and inspire a nation. In fact, Vidal & Mrs. Lopez recently had the opportunity to visit the White House and meet President Obama! And to think that all this powerful change was initiated by a principal that dedicated her life to creating scholars; that the catalyst for this greatness was an intelligent young man, honoring the individual who taught him that he mattered.
I dare you to look through these posts and not cry tears of joy.
It’s a very New York City mindset to think that you can do it alone.
We all float around this city in our own little bubbles, eyes glued to our cell phones, trash and slushy snow biting at our feet. It’s easy to feel like you are alone in this winter dystopia, especially when the subway is crowded, rent is due, and you have no clue what you want to do with your life .
But if you manage to look up for a second, to recognize the warm bodies around you, and to acknowledge the supportive people who stand by you no matter what – your whole life can change.
It did for Vidal. And it did for me too.
When you feel down, and it seems like the entire Universe is working against you – Who do you find by your side? When you mutter, “Leave me alone!”, and you resist the help that you don’t feel you deserve, Who still supports you through your darkest hour? Sometimes it’s a parent or a best friend. A really great mentor or coach . Or an incredible partner who can see your true soul under the fog of current pain and uncertainty.
Those people are earth angels sent to your side for a reason. They were given to you so that you could borrow their strength when you have none. They loan you the energy and perseverance to continue on, to help you build a life of deepest happiness and joy out of the rubble of current circumstance. They help you push through that cloud of doubt, even when you aren’t quite sure where you are going or how you will get there. They are there to give you the extra oomph you need to succeed.
It’s the sacred cycle of getting and giving – it’s what it means to .
You’ll never forget who loaned you their strength.
My boyfriend knew me when I felt like I no longer knew myself . I had close girlfriends that opened my eyes to my life circumstance in ways that I had never considered before. Most of all, I had people that didn’t give up on me. They knew what was in store for me; they knew the truth of my time on earth.
And slowly but surely, with their borrowed strength, I discovered it for myself as well.
And once you’ve emerged on the other side, it is your job to show them what you did with their strength while it was on loan. It is your mission, and your deepest thank you, to lend that strength back to the world tenfold!
That’s how we help one another. That’s how we defeat DEFEAT. You’ve developed an entirely new strain of strength, and now it is your turn to guide a good friend or loved one to the realm of conquered fear and infinite possibility. You know what it feels like to be down, and now you know what it feels like to regain control. It’s your grand mission to give that gift to others.
So ask yourself, Who do I need to repay today? Who gave me their heart so that I could feel confident again? How can I brighten their day with my most sincere thank you?
And even more than that, How can I use my new found strength to help someone else in need? You might feel unsure, you might still feel so caught up in your own fog that you feel you aren’t in a position to help others – but that’s not true! Helping others is therapeutic and it will help you too .
What lessons have I learned through my own difficulty?
What actions and advice did I find
when my friends and family were loaning me their own courage and strength?
Go out there and find someone who could use those lessons. Find someone who needs you right now. Give them your strength on loan, and save their day.
Times of trial and difficulty are given to you for a REASON. And that reason needs to be shared with others who could benefit from your story.
Don’t wait until you feel confident; share your deepest truth and the confidence will find you .
You never know what can happen when you pass along your story and strength to others.
Don’t believe me? Just ask Vidal.
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