Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Blogtoberfest Day #30: Cathy invites you to let down your guard and let the light shine in

It's only fitting that today's guest post, the last guest prompt for Blogtoberfest12, should come from Cathy. As almost all of you will know, Cathy aka {tinniegirl} brought Blogtoberfest to life way back in 2008. Anyone who knows Cathy will know her as a talented artist, a wholehearted story teller and a brave dreamer. For me, she is also a mentor and inspiration.

I am still blown away in the trust and faith she showed in me in asking me to host Blogtoberfest in 2012. And I love the way she is -- in typically courageous Cathy style -- sharing with us here what led to her making that decision, and some of the unexpected benefits.

Since Kat asked me to write a guest post I’ve been pondering exactly what I might want to say as Blogtoberfest comes to a close for another year. And friendship is the topic that kept coming back to mind. In recent months I’ve learned a lot about friendship.

Like most of us, I am always juggling a million competing priorities and I want to be able to do it all. I never want to let anyone down and I find it so hard to withdraw from any commitment I make. In truth I have ridiculously high expectations of myself and I see any lapse in keeping all my balls in the air as a complete failure. It’s exhausting and this year, after five pretty full on years, the signs of burn-out have been ever present.

I hit September this year feeling absolutely exhausted and uninspired. Blogtoberfest was just around the corner. I kept trying to rally my passion. I knew that lots of people were looking forward to it and that I’d disappoint them if I didn’t make it happen. And so I kept trying to talk myself into it.

But in the end I couldn’t.

I sent Kat an email wondering if she might like to host it this year. She’d already offered to help out and I thought perhaps she might be willing to actually take the reigns completely. And luckily for all of us she said a great big YES.

It’s been an absolute gift to have Kat host Blogtoberfest this year. Not only has she done an absolutely amazing job, she’s given me the gift of knowing that I don’t have to do it all on my own.

It’s got me thinking about how I can do this more. In what other parts of my life can I acknowledge when I’m struggling and ask for help? How much do people assume that I’ve got it all sorted and I don’t need any help?

I’ve been practising with a couple of challenging situations that I’ve had to deal with lately, and I’ve been amazed at the response. I have good people in my life and if I’m willing to express my vulnerability and ask for help it’s very likely that I might get it, in abundance.

My invitation to you is to ask yourself what image do you project to the outside world, even your nearest and dearest? Could you perhaps let your guard down a little sometime and ask for help? Like me you might find that you receive the ultimate affirmation of friendship and love, and that it completely changes everything.

Thank you so much, as always Cathy, for your wise and generous insight. These are possibly THE most important questions we may ever have to ask ourselves. They present us with some tough truths about our own vulnerability, but pave the way for real and enduring connection.

I know I am not the only one who looks forward to being a part of Blogtoberfest in 2013. It's been an amazing ride in 2012 and it will be a privilege to stay connected, share the load and help to shine the light on this lovely community.


  1. This blog post is SO IMPORTANT because it is SO TRUE that asking for help is SO HARD for us women...I too have to practice asking for help, especially financial help, which is some of the hardest help for me to ask for. These challenges are put in our path for the reason of learning how to navigate them, even when we'd rather not =-\

    I am SO GLAD that Cathy made the decision to ask for help and to ask it from YOU, Kat. It tickles me silly that I somehow managed to 'introduce' you both from my part of the world and that it has lead all the way to this point in time where you were able to happily step in to help Cathy keep the Blogtoberfest torch burning for us all!!

    And you have done an amazing job as Cathy and I have mentioned many times this month =-)

    Many thanks to Cathy for writing this blog post and reminding me how important friendship can be when we need a little help in our lives and reminding me that friends are always happy to help out even if they are at the opposite side of the world =-)

  2. Wise words from a wise woman! Sounds like your timeout was exactly what you needed - hope to see you back bigger and better next year (with your helpful minions ;)

    Kat - well done on hosting this year, you have done an awesome job!

  3. Thanks Kat for hosting Blogtoberfest. You've done a great job. I have really enjoyed your thought provoking, inspiring posts and those of your guests as well