Have you ever described yourself using the word “just’? I’m just a mom. I just work Direct Sales. I just have an associate’s degree. STOP. You aren’t “JUST’ anything! You are amazing! You make a difference! You are important. Those aren’t “Justs”.
The beginning of April I stepped way out of my comfort zone to attend a Blogging Retreat in Melbourne, Florida. Of course there was lots of talk about important blogging topics. There was networking and friendship building. There was even a trip to the tattoo parlor! But one word was the talk of the retreat. JUST. Hope made it very clear that just isn’t a word for who we are.
This one word is used to down play who we really are. It’s used to lessen things. It’s not an empowering word at all. So why would we want to use such a word to describe anything about ourselves?
My husband and I had a long discussion a few months ago along this same idea. He made me list out all the things I am, have accomplished and do on a regular basis. Once I started making that list, it’s kind of hard to say “just”. I’m a mother, wife, world traveler, an Air Force Brat, a writer, a business owner (Times 3), a college graduate, a mentor, and the list goes on. How can I say I am ‘just’ anything?
Sure, there are days when I feel less than that list. I feel unimportant. But then I remember who I am. Much more than ‘just’.
The last day of the retreat, Sunday, I made plans to meet up with a friend of over 20 years. I hadn’t seen her in 10 years so we had so much to catch up on. We talked about our kids, mutual friends, things going on. We talked about homeschooling, as she was considering it for her daughter. Then I asked the question. “So what are you doing now? Working? Staying home?’ She said it. “ I’m just a stay at home mom.” With my new empowerment, the next words out of my mouth were, “You aren’t just anything!”
I was able to share with her all the things she did and what kind of impact she made. I wanted to make sure she knew she was important and made a difference. All because I stepped out of my comfort zone and went to a blogging retreat, I was not only able to take a word out of my vocabulary that makes me less, I was able to share that with a friend.
There is no doubt I will use that word in the future. Somehow it is ingrained. We all do it. So now, we all stop it. Teach our daughters, sons, friends, family to own who they are and be proud of what they’ve done. No accomplishment is less or just.