By Jennifer Eulberg, MA, LPC
I believe in you—and here’s why:
I’ve spent many years of my life not believing in myself. While it could be argued that I looked great “on paper”, I experienced my life through lenses of trauma, doubt, depression, and anxiety. I did everything I could to set myself for “one day” but not believing much that “one day” would happen. I felt summed up by friends who noted, “You’re good at school!” but didn’t really categorize me as “intelligent”. It became another self-deprecating joke I encouraged about myself. I took it on and labelled myself as a “school robot—beep boop beep”. I sacrificed many things to “make sure” I would have a decent future, but I was barely living the right now. I look back on my life and see large, sweeping periods of not much. I certainly FELT those years. I used to consider so much of this as a waste of time. However, I see now how much I learned and grew—becoming who I am now.
I don’t know that I ever really did too much of that on purpose, though. I have always tended to be more of a reflector on what has already occurred, working to adapt a way to live with the past. I absolutely went to therapy, many times. Each time helped in different ways. Again, DURING those times I felt and thought myself an absolute mess. I often couldn’t see how what counselors told me could possibly be done. I saw barrier after barrier. I still often look at self-help books cynically. Usually written by someone that has conclusions to a struggle, I wonder how someone in the struggle sees anything but what I did—something so far from where I am/was to give it much credence.
My life, including my own therapy experiences, has greatly influenced what I do with clients. As counselors, we strive to meet the client where they are—not where they can get. I see this as one of the most powerful tools in a therapist’s toolbox. I’ve seen the impact this has on my ability to help people.
From that starting place, wherever that is, I have seen people’s ability to growth and make positive changes. On reflection, I never made it anywhere without first grappling with where I was first. I struggled immensely with years of disbelief it could get better, then years of seeing how it might get better, but only to a point. Now I have had several years of it being better to the point I can actually have visions of something even better!
This is why I believe in you. I believe in people. I believe because I lived it and currently have the honor to see my client’s doing the work to get there too.
So, am I trying to convince you to believe in yourself? Actually, I’m not. I get that it might not be possible where you are. I had loads of people believing in me, but it didn’t matter until I got there myself. I’m hoping by sharing all of this and stating my belief in you, that you might make a step toward the many, many steps toward, maybe, if only, someday, you MIGHT believe in yourself too.
JENNIFER EULBERG, MA, LPC
Welcome Jennifer, our new blogger!
Jennifer is a counselor at Sandhill who specializes in depression, self-esteem, and grief & loss. Get to know Jennifer as she shares her perspectives on life, contemplates value themes, and offers gentle encouragement.
THANK YOU to Stefanie Pisarkiewicz, LPC for her blog contributions from November 2014 - February 2019!