Episode Summary Welcome back to the Erica Diamond Podcast! Today I have a very special…
What would make a difference inside you?
Grow Inner Strengths.
I’ve hiked a lot and have often had to depend on what was in my pack. Inner strengths are the supplies you’ve got in your pack as you make your way down the twisting and often hard road of life. They include a positive mood, common sense, integrity, inner peace, determination, and a warm heart. Researchers have identified other strengths as well, such as self-compassion, secure attachment, emotional intelligence, learned optimism, the relaxation response, self-esteem, distress tolerance, self-regulation, resilience, and executive functions. I’m using the word strength broadly to include positive feelings such as calm, contentment, and caring, as well as skills, useful perspectives and inclinations, and embodied qualities such as vitality or relaxation. Unlike fleeting mental states, inner strengths are stable traits, an enduring source of well-being, wise and effective action, and contributions to others.
I never set out to be a single mom. I’m not sure that many women do to be honest (despite what the media might like us to believe).
I always wanted to be part of a family, part of a close-knit group of people who looked out for and loved each other. I didn’t experience that growing up; I was abused by my grandfather at the age of 5, my grandmother told me not to tell anyone as I’d be taken away and, when she thought I had told (although I was too frightened to tell a soul), she tried to drown me in the garden pond. That was the start of the sexual harassment and abuse I encountered both inside and outside of my family, over many years.
I grew up being told that no one liked me, loved me, or wanted me. That no one thought I’d achieve anything and that I was stupid and hopeless. Although school was my sanctuary, and I loved it, I didn’t do very well academically due to a series of undiagnosed learning difficulties. I left home the day after I turned 18, got married at 19, had my daughter at 20, my son at 22, and was divorced by 25.