Changes in your life can knock you off your feet. Until now, you may have been in charge of your life. But now perhaps you feel isolated, anxious, helpless and out of control. When you are the one who is stressed and needs nurturing, how do you begin to care for yourself?
Reaching out for support can help you manage.
In Stepping Stones, we have printed stories from women like Doreen who went through difficult times and then offered you our thoughts about how support helped them cope:
There are many ways of coping with loss and each of us will find our own. Doreen found a path through her grief primarily through the support that came from her friends and the comfort of her work routine. She also found a sense of purpose in taking care of those who needed her – her husband while he was ill, her sons and her boss. Throughout her story, Doreen speaks of the value of her friendships, especially those she nurtured over the years. By reaching out to these women, she was supported, involved, and included. Doreen and her peers continue to be resources for each other now that they are getting older.
Sometimes, we used other women’s stories to get you thinking about issues in your own lives, as we did with Ilene’s story about her friendships:
Ilene has found that, for herself, the most valuable quality of a woman friend is a “beautiful heart.” What qualities are important to you in your friendships today: Sharing feelings about challenges you are facing? Exchanging practical information? Enjoying companionship? Having someone there who truly understands and accepts you as you are?
After women such as Sally and Debbie told their stories, our Stepping Stones sections highlighted steps you could take to help manage the challenges in your own lives:
Both Sally and Debbie profit from the contact with each other. Although they function differently, they celebrate their differences and still find common ground. They recognize the mutuality of a friendship and both women grow from the infusion of new energy. Who are the people in your life whose differences can enrich you? In what ways does your life change when you support a friend? Both Sally and Debbie have the wisdom to realize that transitions are constant – that change is the only certainty in life. They know that with practical coping tools, including their friendship, they can maneuver through their transitions now and in the future.
Is there a friend with whom you want to share the wisdom of Stepping Stones? You can show her how to sign up – click on the “FREE Newsletter” link below and to the left to register for her own personal copy.