Ten months ago when I launched the Tiny Buddha community forums, I hoped they would better enable us all to connect with and support each other.
Since then, I’ve been amazed and inspired to see the love and compassion people extend there, without any agenda beyond helping others feel less alone and more at ease in our uncertain, often confusing world.
There are now over 10,000 active forum members, and there have been more than 1,600 conversations on a wide range of topics related to spirituality, self-esteem, relationships, purpose, parenting, health and fitness, and more.
Whether you’re an active member or just discovering the forums for the first time, I’d like to draw your attention to a new forum category that I hope will be helpful and inspiring.
I launched it last week after receiving a number of blog submissions with a similar message: We can set ourselves free by sharing the stories we may otherwise be tempted to hide.
One of these posts came from a woman who’d given birth secretly in a convent at age sixteen and then given her child up for adoption.
Another came from a brave woman named Sonia Friedrich, who graciously agreed to be the first poster in this new category, with her story about coming out after years of hiding her sexuality.
All the stories had one thing in common: a secret that, when kept, hardened into shame, and when released, softened into peace.
The new section is called “Share Your Truth,” and I launched it with this introductory post:
We all do it to some degree—look at our experiences with a critical eye and decide which ones feel unsafe to share.
We don’t want to be judged, or ridiculed, or misunderstood; we all hope to be loved, supported, and accepted.
But ironically, in hiding pieces of ourselves or our past, we limit our ability to receive unconditional love and acceptance. How can anyone offer us those things if they don’t know who we really are?
And even if they do know who we are, how can we accept their love if we don’t fully believe we deserve it?
That’s what we’re telling ourselves when we choose to hide—that we’re not beautiful, loveable, and worthy, just as we are, and we better hold tight to all the evidence, lest others see it and confirm our fears.
So I say we challenge that scared voice inside that tells us there’s something wrong with us. I say we fight the instinct to cower in shame instead of showing up fully and letting ourselves be seen. I say we own it all—the light, the dark, the highs, the lows—and instead of fearing that others will not accept us, we show them what it looks like to do it.
My name is Lori. I spent more than a decade struggling with low self-esteem, depression, and bulimia. I then spent several more years drinking, smoking, and hiding from the world because I was afraid you wouldn’t like me.
Though I’ve come a long way, due, in large part, to years of therapy and a commitment to personal development, I still struggle with people-pleasing instincts at times, and I still go through phases when I feel insecure. I don’t know if that will ever go away fully, but I am okay with that.
I am proud that I keep going and growing. I am proud that I keep showing up, despite my struggles and imperfections. And I am proud to share my truth.
Is there a truth you’ve been hiding? Are you ready to set yourself free by sharing it?
Start a new thread by scrolling to the bottom of this page: http://tinybuddha.com/forum/share-your-truth/
Feel free to write as little or as much as you’d like—a word, a sentence, a paragraph, or more. This isn’t about getting advice, though you’re free to ask for it, if you’d like. It’s about sharing yourself authentically, knowing there’s beauty in who you’ve been, who you are, and who you will be.
It’s also about letting those who read this know they’re not alone in whatever they’re going through. Whatever it is you’ve been hiding, you can rest assured there are countless others out there, just waiting for someone else to say they can relate.
Just to let you know, before you even share, I admire you for doing this. And knowing this community like I do, I think I can speak for the other members when I say: we value and accept you, just as you are.
If you’re not yet a forum member, you can create a free account here. You can then share your truth—whatever it may be—here.
Thank you for being part of the Tiny Buddha community. You make a difference, and you’re appreciated!
About Lori Deschene
Lori Deschene is the founder of Tiny Buddha. She’s also the author of Tiny Buddha’s Gratitude Journal, Tiny Buddha's Worry Journal, and Tiny Buddha's Inner Strength Journal and co-founder of Recreate Your Life Story, an online course that helps you let go of the past and live a life you love. For daily wisdom, join the Tiny Buddha list here. You can also follow Tiny Buddha on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
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