Confirmation Bias: When we seek out to prove something we already believe to be true.
Deep down inside I always knew the truth. I knew there would come a time I would have to face my past and deal with the bullshit.
The only way I imagined doing so was by utilizing my 3 greatest personal strengths: Writing, Reading and Talking.
I began reading at a very young age. In Grade 2, I started reading Babysitter Club Little Sister books and became hooked. Thankfully my mother loved reading so I was able to connect with her on that level.
My middle brother is a prolific researcher and can literally tell you all about a subject minutes after reading a simple Wikipedia article. Our ability to retain and compute information, process it and communicate is actually quite strong because we become hyper-focused.
Reading books became my escape. I discovered early on that I loved laying in my bed, alone obviously – reading. It gave me quiet from the chaos and it helped soothe my mind.
Reading was actually one of the ways I controlled my crippling Anxiety before they would lead to full-blown Panic Attacks. Once I became lost in a book, my nerves would settle down.
Dear, close friends of mine will tell you when it’s time for me to go have my alone time. It becomes obvious from the look on my face and body language – it’s time for Angela to go.
For the rest of my childhood I would rely on reading Books as an escape from the insanity of my Homelife – where things would be said and done over and over again; despite the negative outcomes.
Writing naturally followed; which if encouraged, can become quite useful for ones future.
I realize now that my attempts to document my life throughout the years also became a coping mechanism. It felt necessary to write about my day, week or even life up to a point to ensure I had it all right; that my facts were straight in case I ever came to challenge.
Almost 3 decades later, I see this as my way of building up a defence. That if I had to recall something from a certain point in time, I would have it written down somewhere.
I’ve been Blogging (it wasn’t called this back then!) and playing around with websites, profiles and Social Media since 1998.
Read: The History Of Blogging
I almost went to College for Multimedia and Design but decided last minute to pursue Public Relations. Thank god I did because it taught me more than I could’ve ever imagined but I did not pursue PR as a career.
Instead, I stayed in Retail Banking because I got a job as a part-time Teller and I loved it.
I loved dealing with people and hearing about their lives.
I loved feeling connected to the Community and helping it.
I loved the fast-paced atmosphere and Corporate setting.
I knew it would be the perfect opportunity for me to take the 5 years of Retail experience I already had from working at Winners in High School and my College education in Public Relations.
I never looked back and within 6 years; I had become a Financial Planner within the Wealth Management division of a major Bank. Reading was an essential aspect of my role because you needed to be informed.
For example; During the 2008 Recession, information was popping off at the speed of light and people were flipping; rightfully so!
During that time, people were making investment decisions based on fear and emotion. Somehow I had to show them how to think opportunistically in the long-term vs. Right Now.
My ability to find the best source of information and communicate it quickly and accurately led to building a book of business well beyond my years and a Goodwill worth millions.
At this point in my life where my relationships outside of my marriage and Family have lasted 30, 20, 10 years – it only felt right to be as honest as possible.
Sharing this part of my life is part of a healing process like no other. My story may sound intimidating at first but the bigger message is that this problem of our Human Condition is happening everywhere. It can happen to anyone.
We are so disconnected from our hearts because there is so much coming at us. For those who feel extreme amounts of empathy and emotion, oppression and depression wears us down.
If we don’t drive a nice car like our Co-Worker does or own a big house like our parents did – we don’t feel as worthy. If we are not perceived to be ahead – we are shamed until we are.
My confirmation bias is that we need love and nurture to grow and that doesn’t stop in Adulthood. We are often shamed into believing we have to do things the way our parents and their generation before did.
That way of thinking is harmful and dangerous.
Do we really want to treat a Women the way Male Society did 30 years ago? When Women didn’t feel validated or worthy enough unless she got married and had kids while her husband built his empire?
Should we really follow the advice of those who did not have successful marriages themselves in our marriages today?
Is it really that important that we have more stuff; more “decor,” or tangible goods than our parents did just so they can pat themselves on the back, saying “Good Job!”
We must remind ourselves who we take direction from. If we solely listen to our parents and follow this tunnel vision that more is better – we will lose.
If we raise our children the way they did, we are just Churning the same problems, repetitions and theories that don’t work in the first place.
If we continue to believe Addiction is a moral failing based upon weakness – we will just continue to create more addiction.
It is my Confirmation Bias that we need to continue nurturing ourselves through self-love, personal growth, emotional trust and balance. Maintaining balance and strong values, beliefs and morals requires a bit more strength in what you preach in terms of the work at hand – but it is worth it.
I hope everyone will take the time this weekend to practice more self-care and appreciation. Reading, journaling, whatever – if it makes you happy; do it.