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BY SUSAN R. KILEY

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Destroying Walls
Stevano Vicigor/ Getty

Destroying walls that keep us hostage, unhappy and unsuccessful in life isn’t something that just happens over night. Years of building these metaphoric walls as a safe haven – protection – of your life, you need to take back.

I believe in being honest. After my marriage and subsequent attempts to end my life, I realized (with a lot of therapy) that I needed to destroy the walls that kept me hostage for so many years. I no longer wanted to live hidden and pretend to be someone or something I was not. Hell, I no longer wanted to sugar-coat my successes and, even more, failures.

Destroying Walls for Love and Acceptance

I only wanted to be loved by others for so long; forgetting the one person who mattered most, me, was all that I needed. Destroying walls is difficult and scary. But, I knew if I were ever to get love or acceptance from myself or others, I had to remove each piece I had assembled on the walls. 

Every. 

Last. 

One. 

So I decided to be ‘authentic’ from then on. I was going cutthroat, no bullshit, completely honest with myself and anyone in my life. 

Removing walls is scary as hell, like putting on a bikini for the first time in 30 years and three babies later. But, what a freeing feeling you experience as each piece of a wall or the entire wall is removed. I felt closer and deeper with my love for myself again. Turns out all those self-help books (and the very expensive therapist) were right all along—who knew!

It took almost five years to remove (nearly all) the walls, one at a time. Every time a wall is destroyed, I thought I was trying as hard as possible to be honest – with myself and others.

But then my former clarity and accountability coach posed this question during one of our weekly calls: 

What if you showed everyone what I see every week? 

Uhh, that’s not possible… .

Holy hell no!

To see my running mascara or my fidgeting self uncover a massive win… .

 

Was it even possible? Could I let myself destroy all the walls at once, and to such a large group of people I didn’t know from Adam? Maybe I needed more than five years for all this ‘coming out.’ 

Destroying Walls to Be Seen

It took a lot of courage to remove more walls – completely raw and unfiltered in that group. There was a lot of writing, then deleting, sending copies to my coach who encouraged this group ‘here I am’ (if you will). Every reply from her, “Yes, that’s perfect. Just post it.” Delete.

 

  • I wanted to share when something didn’t work, not worrying that they’d see me as a failure.
  • When something did work, I wanted to share that, not worrying that they’d see me as a massive success.
  • Most of my feelings didn’t feel authentic, but I truly wanted to share all my feelings, good or bad. Share those, too, not worrying that the group would see me as arrogant, insecure, or full of drama.

 

Removing the last piece of the last wall day came. Sweat pooled in my pits, my stomach turned over a hundred times as I gasped for air. Not sure why writing and posting, which I was (always was), was such an ordeal.

Copy, paste, enter. 

destroying walls quotes

Those ladies and a couple of men saw everything. All my fears and insecurities surfaced – fast! They didn’t think I was amazing (what I was telling myself), quite the opposite. Silence. As if my fear of showing everyone who I truly was wasn’t hard enough, I sat for hours refreshing my computer. 

A few cordial ones were gracious enough to say ‘hi’ or ‘welcome’ or ‘can’t wait to get to know you.’ They didn’t care. No one was waiting to ‘get to know me,’ I’d been in the group (78 members) for almost three months by this time (I believe). 

As sad and pathetic as any of this sounds, so be it. At that point in my life, I wasn’t strong enough to say, with confidence, “I don’t care.” And, I hadn’t completed all the ‘me’ work to understand the unconscious wall building. Early on in my life, after trauma, I built these walls as a way to shut all feelings down, to protect myself from the world I didn’t understand. 

Building walls meant I couldn’t be hurt. No one could get through the walls. On the flip side, I wasn’t living (I never really had lived). I didn’t feel. I didn’t know what it was I wanted or what my desires were for my life (now or for the future). 

My clarity and accountability coach encouraged me to keep posting, big or small, win or failure. So I did. Every time I posted, crickets. When I wanted acceptance from an $18,000 mastermind (a huge milestone for me because I never did groups, especially those consisting of women), nothing. It was like I was in a sorority that wished they hadn’t accepted me.

My part being, maybe on some level, I used my opportunity as a ‘sorority,’ being accepted, loved, and creating deep, long-lasting friendships with incredible humans all over the world. Looking back, I was in the group for all the wrong reasons. A mastermind is not what I needed in my life. 

Journey of Removing Walls

Two years. It’s taken two years to sit and remove the walls I quickly put on after my experience in the mastermind group. I wish they thought I was terrific, on a surface level, so they could see how far I’d come to opening myself and removing the walls I proudly wore for so long.

Despite it being two years, I think there’s still a little piece of me that wanted that moment in time to be different. I think those moments resurface, and I grab for whatever material I have to build a wall fast whenever I get an occasional marketing email from one of them, when what I want is a text, DM, or email asking, how am I doing? 

There are many historical examples when someone decides they are going full-out, balls-to-the-wall, and doesn’t care what anyone thinks. Whenever someone makes this type of bold ‘coming out’ (if you will), there is always a strong reaction – some will cheer and support, and some will shake their heads and tell them they need therapy (or they are doing it for attention).

Genuine, authentic people are making an impact in the world – showing they are incredible humans – removing all walls – baring all for the world to see. I applaud all these fantastic people!

Deciding to be authentic and then removing walls to stop hiding and being who you were made to be, is difficult, I get that. Having a coach cheer you on, as I did, but it flopping and hitting you like a creamed-filled pie, devastating.

For me, I had a “see, I told you so” moment. Not that being ‘right’ did me any good, it didn’t. All that moment in time proved to me was that I am a strong woman for putting myself out there, taking a chance, and removing walls – even if the outcome wasn’t as I had hoped.

Truth be told, as I am typing this now, I notice the same feeling I had years ago: excitement, adrenaline, anxiety. I see my master wall builder is taking over – I want to be the fastest builder of walls that have ever built protective walls.

Need to remind me: it’s okay. Not worth having an anxiety-induced episode that will convert to self-doubt later. Breathe. Writing and sharing with the world that I go in and out of wall building … is okay!

Tools to Help with Destroying Walls

Despite the self-discovering journey I have thrown myself into, including destroying walls, I still have a long way to go. Journaling my journey and meditating are my two favorite ways to rid myself of more walls. Also, I find taking daily walks with my loyal and loving companion, Kenzie helps too.

On the deepest levels, I still care what people think of me, and I am afraid people won’t get or understand who I am. The beauty within is way more crucial than outward beauty (in my opinion), and loving myself is so much, much more than anyone else’s love.

I’m only human.

Broken to New Beginnings

Are you ready to make today your best day yet?

Let me ask you something… do you dream of a new beginning? 

How to get the most out of your Broken to New Beginnings journal. 

⭐️ Find a quiet place where you can focus on your daily journalling.

⭐️ Use whatever writing tool you feel most comfortable with, including crayon or markers. 

⭐️ Prepare yourself by playing soothing music or lighting a candle. 

⭐️ Remove any distractions during your journalling time. 

⭐️ Remind yourself you are not restricted to how long each journal entry is or the structure for writing each journal entry. 

⭐️ This is not homework and should not feel like a chore (or bad) to write, doodle, or draw in your journal every day. 

Starting today, dedicate 5 minutes to your emotional and spiritual growth. Begin the journey into a new beginning by reflecting on who you are. Take a moment to share your favorite quotes, inspirational messages, and what makes you happy

REMINDER: Journalling yields many benefits. Discover them by visiting the resource page at the end of your journal. As you start to implement daily or weekly journaling, you will soon notice your mental, spiritual and physical wellness changing. Your new beginning. 

Journalling allows you to think differently about life around you; it takes you from broken to a new beginning. Broken to New Beginnings journal will help you cultivate that attitude of gratefulness, making it your habit to focus on the good in your life and increase your overall well-being and life satisfaction.

Final Thoughts...

Live life on your terms – free of walls – honestly. 

How often do people get to see you without all your walls? What are you afraid of, and on a deeper level, why do you even care?

Please, comment below, I’d love to know!

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Susan R Kiley is an author, content creation expert, blogger, podcast host and YouTube host. She provides real-world information on how to build wildly happy and successful businesses using content without overwhelm. The Success YOU podcast is all about empowering today’s content creator, aspiring writer and YOU to finally do the dang thing and start doing today that truly makes you happy! Susan also runs a digital agency, Kiley Media.

3 Responses

  1. Thank you for sharing, Susan. I’m Bryan’s partner. What an important topic, and kudos to you for being so vulnerable, a breath of fresh air. I too was in a mastermind that destroyed me in many ways. I wonder how many people have joined these groups and have felt the same way we have? I wonder if guys in masterminds or memberships like we’ve been in deal with any of this, or if they are built differently that they just don’t experience any of what we have? I think that would be an interesting post. Anyway, I find your take on every topic refreshing. 🙂

    1. You are welcome. Thank you for taking time to leave a comment, I appreciate it. If you ever need a suggestion for an amazing coach or mentor, let me know, I know a few, and they won’t cost as much as inner circles, masterminds or over-priced friendships. I will consider doing research and seeing if your suggestion is a viable topic. Have an amazing day!

  2. Thank you. Bryan got me hooked on your blog. I like the new format and diversity of topics. Sounds like you’ve had many experiences and a wealth of knowledge. I’m happy you are sharing with everyone and look forward to continue watching, reading and supporting your journey.

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