There are thousands of families, right now, thinking to themselves: Why? What the fuck? Why did this need to happen?! We all know that if we could bring that person back, they most likely would not choose suicide again.
A lot of times in life when we’re faced with challenges and struggles and other things that come at us, we’re unsure of ourselves, we’re un-confident. Sometimes we’re unwilling to actually get into the arena and face that challenge that’s ahead of us. Look, I’ve been there. There have been many times in my life when I have been faced with a challenge that was so difficult that I backed away from it because I didn’t have anything to, any confidence. I wasn’t sure about anything, I didn’t know what I was doing and I certainly didn’t want to face the fear of getting into the arena.
When my beautiful daughter Zoi took her life four years ago, it took me months before I felt somewhat normal. I wasn’t exercising, I wasn’t sleeping, I wasn’t eating well, I just wasn’t myself. And, it took a long time for it to sink in that Zoi would be so upset with me if she knew that I was letting all those good memories from her life stop me from living mine. But it wasn’t as easy as me just flipping on a switch and saying, “I’m okay now, I’m resilient.” No, it actually took me a while to understand that I wasn’t protecting my energy.
Have you ever been in a situation so big that you couldn’t see your way through? Here’s the thing: We often avoid crossing our chasms in life. And, when we don’t cross them, we remain in a survival-mode at the event horizon. We wish that things were better. We wish didn’t have to deal with this. We wish that this never happened. We’re stuck in survival mode. I get it. I was there for a while too. This mode, however, is supposed to be temporary, yet some tend to live there for a few reasons….
I was reluctant to make the call to Zoi’s school. What was I about to commit to? Would they even go for what I was going to ask them? Through a series of calls, I finally got a hold of Jon, the principal. Jon was new to the high school that year. He had heard of Zoi through other teachers and administrators. We talked a bit and I asked point blank if I could speak at this graduation ceremony, as it would have been Zoi’s class. My message would be relevant to not only the kids, but also the parents.
In the last 2 years, I’ve come across a lot of really cool people, like elite Army Special Forces Green Berets. One in particular has had a tremendous impact on my life, (Ret.) Lt. Col. Scott Mann. Scott has taken his 20+ years of experience as a Green Beret, and is now teaching civilians the meaning of being “Rooftop Leaders”. A rooftop leader is someone with a set of specialized skills that makes an impact, with a purpose, that is much bigger than you, and that will leave a long-lasting legacy after you’ve left this earth. This skill set inspires people to follow you not because they have to, but because they choose to.
From the “Uncomfortable is OK” Podcast with host Chris Desmond. Eric and Chris kick it off by talking about some concepts around getting uncomfortable.
In part II of this interview with Resilience Leader, Eric Hodgdon, Scott goes even deeper with Eric on some of the most immediate actions that you can take to fight your way through grief and back into the life you were meant to lead.
Part I: Scott Mann interviews Resilience Leader, Eric Hodgdon to talk about his battle with grief and how he found a compelling way to thrive again.