Pour Into Others, Ask People To Show Up For You, Reach Outside Of Yourself During Harder Seasons

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Starbucks get dressed for the holidays. Their lights are brighter, their cups are festive swirls of red and green that remind you the holidays are here, whether you want them to be or not. 

There are Christmas presents stacked under my tree and the motions of the holidays have pulled me in like waves. Sometimes ones that drown, sometimes ones that remind me that it's fun to give in to life. This season especially my own life raft have been my people - the ones who have put themselves second this season because I didn't know how to ask to be put first. They checked in during Thanksgiving, walked me through my birthday, sent me puppy flower arrangements to remind me that I'm loved and part of so many teams. 

They came through for me. They reminded me of a lesson I learned soon after losing my grandma, you get more out of life when you pour into people than when you pour into your own solitude and ego. 

Trying times have a way of making us feel like we exist on an island that has never been stepped on before. The sand is as fresh as the wounds we find across our body and the desire to build walls is more instinctual than we'd like. 

Those are the moments when looking outside of yourself is as healing as it is life saving.

Last night, during a conversation with a friend, I came back to the simple truth that no one gets through life alone — community exists for a reason. Emotions are unceremonious in how they demand to be felt. They startle you and leave you only enough room to survive, but thriving happens outside of that bubble. It happens by reaching out, by asking for hands to hold, by reminding the people at the other end of those hands that you're not a puzzle to be solved once and forever be completed, you're a person who needs love, grace, forgiveness, and probably a hug. 

You're a better version of yourself when you step outside of yourself long enough to ask how you can serve others and when you realize that in serving others you've found a purpose to your day beyond your own pain. 

It's a Christmas miracle.