Being inspired and inspiring others – This year I’ve been inspired by some truly amazing people living with Parkinson’s – Heidi Reynolds, founder of Start Living Today PD (SLTPD) (www.startlivingtodaypd.co.uk) for a start. When I first joined SLTPD in April this year, I was timid and hesitant in sharing and posting. Little did I know that by the end of the year, I would be helping Heidi to run the group – coming up with ideas and setting challenges! And challenging myself to step right out of my comfort zone.
Inspiring others doesn’t have to mean doing something spectacular. It can be just stepping out of your comfort zone to share your experiences, in the hope that you might be able to help someone.
The ripple effect – Small steps can have a ripple effect – even spreading across the world! Six weeks ago I had an idea which turned into a ‘Grateful Festive Countdown’ for SLTPD. I managed to get 24 volunteers to share what they are grateful for in 2016 – and I posted one each day during advent. They were all different, but heartfelt. Everyone who took part in the countdown either has Parkinson’s or cares for a loved one with Parkinson’s and yet they all have much to be grateful for. And they all inspired others by sharing. Each day the response from the members of our worldwide group was amazing.
Being open about my Parkinson’s journey – Life with Parkinson’s is an emotional roller coaster of highs and lows. And that’s ok. By learning to be more open to this and sharing part of my journey – both with others living with Parkinson’s and those without – I have received so much support and encouragement on my journey. And I know I am not alone.
I’ve discovered that it’s ok to cry and it’s also ok if others cry when I share my journey with them. I’ve shed many tears this year, but they weren’t all tears of sadness. Emotion allows us to show empathy to others. Which in turn can help others to know they are not alone in their journey.
You never know what you are capable of until you try – I’m always learning and discovering new things about myself and about others. Where possible, if I can share my experiences to help others, it is worth a try.
I’ve discovered that I am capable of a lot more than I ever thought possible. At the start of this year, I would never have thought that I would be writing my 15th blog today or that my blogs would be read by over 1000 people across the world.
Changes, constant changes – Things are always changing. Life doesn’t stay still. I don’t know what tomorrow will bring, so I choose to live my life to the full! I may have to make some adjustments, and refocus my priorities, but I won’t let Parkinson’s stop me!
Living well with Parkinson’s – Life may not have turned out how I expected it to. But, I’ve discovered that through good days and bad, it’s totally possible to live well with Parkinson’s! And I want to continue to both be inspired and to inspire others to be positive, motivated and happy in 2017 and beyond!
For 2017, I wish you all: peace and joy: courage, strength and resilience; positivity, motivation and happiness!