Susan McCorkindale

Author. Editor. Autism Advocate.
11.1.18

Comparison is the thief of joy

This week’s episode of Flaws Are The New Black is about the pitfalls of comparison. Maybe you’ve heard the expression, “comparison is the thief of joy” and maybe you haven’t. But I’m here to tell you, it is. When we compare ourselves or our lives to others’, we suffer. When we compare our current selves to our past selves, we suffer as well. Just look at this teary pic of me feeling bad for myself because I don’t look like the photo on either of my book jackets any more. Oy vey, Susan. Knock it off!

The trick to ending this suffering is throwing out every single solitary photo of myself. I’m kidding. I plan to burn them.

No, the trick is GRATITUDE. I need to be grateful for the fact that I’m awake, alive, safe, healthy. (Maybe not mentally healthy but hey, you can’t have everything.) I need to be grateful that I have two incredible sons, friends and family who love me, work I enjoy, and yummy wine to drink at night.

Aging sucks but it’s better than the alternative. Comparison sucks too because it makes me ask myself, “how bad could the alternative to aging really be?” 

Comparison sucks us down the rabbit hole. Gratitude takes our hand and pulls us out. I hope you’ll watch the episode. It’s called Comparison is a Killer. Worse yet, it makes you cry!

Love,

Susan

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10.31.18

Speaking of autism…

Autism News You Can Use, the YouTube program I launched a few months ago in conjunction with Flaws Are The New Black, now has its own channel. This is bad, because all of you who subscribed to Flaws will no longer get to see it, but good because you can subscribe to it separately and you should!

Subscribe/watch here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCv2slTwBFUjCNm3xNWmUvJA

I was telling someone recently why I launched Autism News You Can Use and honestly, it’s not just because of my son or to help my son. It’s because I never want another parent to spend as many hours (hundreds of hours!) as I have on the Internet researching how to help their kid. Getting online, Googling forever, it’s like looking for a needle in a haystack. I have been blessed to have the time to Google and Google and Google some more, and to find some really great needles in the endless haystacks of information. But other parents don’t have that time and they need all the resources they can get. I started Autism News You Can Use in order to share what I’ve found  – and continue to find – in an effort to make other parents’ lives easier.

If you know someone who can benefit from the resources available on Autism News You Can Use, I hope you’ll share the link above with them.

Love,

Susan

 

 

 

 

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10.8.18

Coffee Before Fuel Is Cool. Reverse It, and You Might Regret It

Certain Cars + Diesel = Disaster. 

Sleepily, she slips in her debit card, punches in her zip code and hits enter. Then she looks down to select super-premium or sort-of-super premium or whatever the heck the hundred bucks a gallon gas her BMW demands is called, but she can’t find it.

Hmm. That’s weird.

She lifts the bright green handle. Maybe the super-premium or sort-of-super premium is underneath it? It’s not. She looks around. None of the other drivers out in the early morning drizzle appear to be having trouble with their pumps.

Maybe this one only has one kind? she wonders and then looks – really looks – at the bright green sign with the white writing and it registers. Oh dear God, it’s DIESEL!  She grabs the nozzle that she’s thisclose to plunging into her gas tank, shoves it back into place on the pump, replaces her gas cap, and slinks into her car wondering if anyone’s been watching her stupidity.

And then she drives off, vowing from then on to get coffee before getting gas. Because clearly she’s incapable of doing one without the other.

BASED ON A TRUE STORY. THAT HAPPENED TO A FRIEND. AND SHE WANTED ME TO SHARE IT. NICE OF HER, HUH?

 

 

 

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10.1.18

Brene Brown is so right. Vulnerability is the key to moving forward.

My tribe. I’d be lost without these women.

Brene Brown, the international best-selling author, TED Talk queen, and shame researcher, is spot on when it comes to vulnerability. But before I go into that, let’s all take a moment to react to the word “vulnerability.” Join me, will you?

Eeeeek! Being vulnerable? So not doing that! Put myself out there? I’d rather put pins in my eyes! Open myself up to judgement, share my “stuff”? Oh no. Not happening. I shall keep my shit to myself, thank you very much!

I’m right, right? That’s where we go when we hear the word vulnerability. I recall watching Brene Brown’s TED Talk on the topic with my hands over my eyes, peeking through my fingers. That’s how freaked out I was. But I watched, and watched again. And here’s the bottom line about being vulnerable: it is the key to moving forward to joy, to true happiness.

But first, the hard part. We have to dig deep, listen to what our body is telling us, and look for the clues to why we feel a certain way or are suffering inertia in some aspect of our life. Scary stuff, I know. I’m a master at putting my head in the sand. But ignoring whatever is stopping you from moving forward in your life doesn’t make “it” go away. It makes it worse.

So first, you dig deep. Don’t set up camp down there or anything, just look and acknowledge and accept.  Have tissues, because the final part of that sentence is “and cry.” Then muster up all your courage, hit the store for more tissues and several bottles of wine, and share your discoveries with the person or people you trust most in the world, and only those people.  At first your tribe, aka the people you trust most in the world, could be a little surprised, maybe scared. (Eek! She’s being vulnerable! Quick, where are those pins for my eyes???) But because they’re your tribe, that stuff passes in an instant, and then there’s nothing but listening, support, and love, and being absolutely blown away by your courage.

Any time we have the courage to pull the monster out from under the bed, hold that sucker up to the light and see it for what it really is, we begin to heal, get stronger, put that beast in perspective, free ourselves from its grip, and move forward.

And when we have the courage to do that in the company of those we love and trust? We give the gift of courage to them, too.

Nice right? It ain’t easy, but nothing really worth doing ever is.

Susan

For more thoughts on this and other topics, please join me on YouTube for Flaws Are The New Black, and on Instagram

 

 

 

 

 

 

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