Many thanks to Emily Knight for her contribution to my guest blog series about what being strong means to others.
Award winning food blogger, founder and general Wonder Woman at Bristol Bites (@BristolBites) and editor of The Food Lover West Country Magazine; Emily spends the vast majority of her time conveying information to others. Emily has a knack for engaging with others and I didn't think twice about asking her for her opinions on what makes people strong.
“Strength” is a funny word: it can have all sorts of meanings depending on how it’s used.
It could refer to physical power, or to an object’s ability to stay still and unbroken when subjected to force. When I think about psychological “strength”, it’s more about dealing with problems: having a quality that allows you to handle the bad times in an effective way.
Not all of us have a great deal of strength – I certainly don’t at times. My anxiety made finding strength an even tougher challenge: I gave in to what my brain was telling me, I convinced myself that I couldn’t cope…and as a result, I was signed off work for 6 months and barely saw my friends in that period.
Now, though, things are different. CBT helped me to realise that the anxiety was eating away at my strength, convincing me that I was weak when that wasn’t actually the case. I’ve now completely retrained my brain, and my anxiety no longer dominates everything I do.
Strength is all about identifying your weaknesses and tackling them head-on, rather than letting them get the better of you. Your brain may be telling you that it sounds far too difficult and you should just carry on as normal – but don’t let it win…