All my life I’ve had a pressing sense of responsibility to ensure that all life around me thrived. It seems obvious then that I set out to become a social worker as an adult. I have spent the last 5 years learning about theories and methods that are supposed to equip me with the right tools to be able to change systems and, ultimately, transform social reality as we currently know it. I have spent the last 5 years consumed and borderline obsessed with complexity thinking, systems change, sustainability, and radical social change — reading, researching, and exploring what we, as a species, should do to make this a better place for all life. This became my identity, to the point where it was all I knew about myself. Without this, who am I?
During 2020, I met a content creator and broadcaster who now goes by the name LvlUpJosh. While I had heard of Twitch before meeting him, it had never been part of my social reality. I have been playing video games ever since I was a child, but it never crossed my mind that this was something to be shared with the world, or more so, be a career. And, while most of my friends and family are unaware of this, I have also struggled with social anxiety for most of my life. So, the mere idea of putting myself out there was terrifying! Yet, LvlUpJosh planted a seed which, months later, sent me down my own content creation/broadcasting journey.
My mind has always held an abundance of imagination. When I was younger, I would spend my days exploring new worlds I created by stringing words together. This was also a coping mechanism, as my reality was a place I would rather avoid. As I grew older, this reality became harder to escape and I lost sight of my creative self. My mind has continued to buzz with ideas, but recovering from emotional trauma demands a lot of energy which has kept my ideas from reaching fruition. Until now.
In the past months, ever since I began exploring content creation and broadcasting, I have experienced a surge of creative energy and a deep awakening. It feels as if I am reconnecting with a self which has been neglected for years. The more I travel on this road, the more pull I feel towards it. Yet, there is something which is holding me back. Guilt. What about Earth? What about social injustice? What about changing the system? What about the climate? What about the animals? What about the increasing number of people with degrading mental health and increased loneliness? How can I, in good conscience, pursue a career as a content creator and broadcaster when millions of people and animals are being exploited and Earth is on fire?
As I continue to age, it becomes clear to me that I’ve been stuck in survival mode. The emotional pain that I endured overwhelmed me with an understanding of suffering and I somehow made it my job to keep others from experiencing this, all the while neglecting my own boundaries, needs, and emotions. For 30 years my life has not been my own as I’ve been psychologically bound by fear that I would cause someone harm.
But, I am awakening to myself.
Join me over at twitch.tv/lvluplulu — I’d love to have a conversation with you!