Pardon My French

Carte Blanche: Renewing the Relationship with Yourself

2 years ago by

Carte Blanche: Renewing the Relationship with Yourself

Sometimes in life, renewal comes after of one of those “aha” moments and sometimes it doesn’t. Sometimes it comes after an accumulation of a few, or many little things that bring you to a place where you’re finally ready to dig deep and make some changes, on your own terms. Even if it means having to lean against the trauma, no matter how big or small, to get you to a place of renewal and growth, where you’re able to see with clarity, the before and the after.

Recognizing this and allowing yourself to feel – whether that be sadness, happiness or just a real need for rest, is what I’m talking about today with Emily and Veronica. Giving yourself permission to prioritize yourself, and the good that can come from it – not only for you, but everyone in your life, is both valid and vital.

On being honest on Instagram…
GARANCE: It took me long time to find my voice on Instagram, and it might change and I might lose it again, but one day I was just like, “Well fuck that shit, I’m just going to start talking about the real me and stop trying to do anything other than that.”

On a midlife crisis…
GARANCE: As most of our listeners and readers know, I’ve been going through a kind of a big life crisis, midlife because I’m at my midlife, though midlife is changing now!
VERONICA + EMILY: This is very true!
GARANCE: But I’m around 40, and that’s the age where you usually hit a wall if you haven’t examined your life, and so I did. Everything that I do today is new. I’ve never been single. I have never known what it means to love myself.

On thinking of it as an “awakening” vs. a “crisis”…
EMILY: I love that we’re referencing it is as an awakening, not as a crisis. It feels like such a progression in a way of thinking and I do think that’s becoming more common and it’s not just us. It’s great and much healthier than thinking about it as a crisis. There’s this idea that your life is kind of over at this point and you’ve fucked up all these years and what are you going to do about it now? And now, it’s a completely different thing. It’s, “Oh, I have so much time ahead of me and I can make so many positive changes” and it ends up being incredible.

On trauma…
GARANCE: You feel like you have to have this dramatic moment in your life in order to be able to change but sometimes an awakening can just happen because you’re fed up and want to move.
VERONICA: Something I’ve noticed with my friends recently and that we’ve been talking about is that you don’t have to have trauma to be unhappy. You can just be unhappy while you have a regular, day-to-day life, and that’s ok to admit and to talk about because it’s part of mental health.
GARANCE: Something that’s been very important and instrumental in my owning and allowing myself to say that I have suffered is that I haven’t suffered if you compare me to anyone that has really suffered, right? I always had enough to eat and my parents were relatively kind. But you can’t measure trauma.

On learning from trauma…
GARANCE: My belief is that in order to grow, we have to lean against any type of trauma. Being human is really having darkness and light at the same time. And there is nothing that changes or grows without that. Whether your trauma is tiny or giant, you need it to grow. Just look at it in the eyes, it’s fine, and learn from that.

On the importance of feeling free to express yourself…
VERONICA: I’ve never been in a huge bureaucratic state where you have to be so careful and not express yourself in fear of whatever that retribution may be. But I think it’s so important for people, even if they can’t do it on a daily basis, have some place in their life where they can truly be themselves and find support within being themselves. I do think we underestimate how many people don’t have that, whether it be at work or at home.

On the benefit of being selfish…
EMILY: Big critics of conversations like this say, “Oh you must be so involved and it’s so selfish to spend all of this time and energy on these things.” But I don’t think people realize that when you finally take the time for yourself and do something wholly selfish, it has such a trickle down impact to everyone else in your life, from the people you work with, your partner, friends and family.

On being alone on your birthday…
VERONICA: I think there’s something about giving that day to yourself. I think it’s so helpful to have a marker and a check-in point to go, “Ok, before this and now after this.”
GARANCE: Birthdays are literally nothing. But they are also a moment of self celebration. I believe that our lives are our stories, our own novels, and you have your mythical figures and your mythical sufferings. In my “before” life, I was a balloon that was not attached to anything. And now, I believe in my story and I can change it and I’m working on that for our next retreat. But basically, giving yourself the right of that depth. So that’s why a birthday I think a birthday is an important time.

On taking a day each week for yourself…
GARANCE: Taking that day off, it’s insane how much it’s lightened my load. When this day happens, usually Sunday, it’s like all the particles that were shaking in my head — imagine you know, those snow globes — it’s like all the particles where shaken all week. I’ve seen so many people and had so many interactions. We have more interactions now than we ever have, right? Instagram DMs, emails, texts, the shows we watch and all these emotions. All these things shake our particles. So my day off is for these things to settle down and then the water gets clear.


Add yours
  • Clotilde May, 23 2019, 11:22 / Reply

    “ça impacte tout le reste dans votre vie, les gens avec qui vous travaillez, votre partenaire, vos amis et votre famille.”
    Mouais, j’aimerais bien que ce soit tout le temps vrai. J’aimerais que le travail sur soi soit suivi un peu plus rapidement et un peu plus souvent par un “bon maintenant qu’est-ce que je peux faire pour les autres?”
    Désolée mais dans la vraie vie c’est assez rare. Rectification : c’est TRES rare. Beaucoup de monde s’arrête à la première étape. On me dit “ha mais d’abord je suis de bonne humeur c’est déjà énorme – non c’est pas énorme, c’est la base – et puis je ne publicise pas ce que je fais pour les autres”. Ben voyons. La moitié du temps c’est du flan, on donne 20 euros par mois à une assoce et on a l’impression de sauver le monde avec notre bonté.
    Et puis tout le monde se pose en victime de nos jours, tout le temps, c’est à celui qui sera la plus grande victime. Et quand vous allez dans le Tiers monde et que vous leur racontez pourquoi les gens sont malheureux chez nous, au mieux ils font des grands yeux ébahis, au pire ils éclatent de rire et se foutent de nous, incrédules.
    Développement personnel, très bien et nécessaire, mais au bout de quelques mois/années, ça devrait être, OK, what next ? (surtout que bien souvent, faire des trucs pour les autres nous fait grandir bien plus vite que s’analyser le nombril, et surtout, c’est beau-coup plus fun).

    Par contre, d’accord pour le dernier paragraphe sur les journées “intouchables”, c’est une question d’hygiène de vie.

  • Thank you for this PMF! I loved it. I’ve also been going through an “awakening” in my early 40’s and it has been both terrifying and beautiful. I’m so happy to hear that I’m not the only one going through this. This past couple of years have taught me to listen to my instincts and to not worry as much about making everyone else happy (it’s a work in progress!). The hardest part has been keeping my marriage intact throughout this change and throughout this whirlwind of questioning that puts everything in doubt. Can you please make a PMF about evolving while in a relationship and the ups and downs that are inevitable? XOXO

  • Marina June, 20 2019, 5:49 / Reply

    Thank you! That was great.

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