Erin Lieben- A simple game of golf, a smashed skull, a changed life
Erin was playing a simple game of golf the summer after her senior year of highschool when her boyfriend of the time swung a golf club into her head sending her into a Traumatic Brain Injury and changing her life forever. Twenty years from the incident Erin can say it was an experience that taught her how strong she is and in a positive way created the women she is today. "You might think it was the worst thing that happened to me, but I can honestly say now, 20 years later, it was the best thing that happened to me." -Erin
6 powerful messages that helped Erin open new doors and regain her confidence after she was hit with a completely unplanned crises.
"I forgave him"- Do it for yourself
The person who hit Erin on the head was her boyfriend of the time. At the time of the accident Erin was an emotional wreck. There were other issues in their relationship, but she would go in and out of emotions with him: forgiveness, acceptance, anger.... and then she finally forgave him.
"I didn't do it for him, I did it for me," said Erin. The fact Erin forgave him had everything to do with herself. That's the thing about forgiveness.
The person you forgive might feel no different. They might not take any different actions. They won't be a different person, but you will. The act of forgiveness open you up to be much more happy and free.
Open up walls and forgive the people in your life who have caused you the most pain
Meditate- find out how to fall in love with yourself
So how did Erin forgive her boyfriend who changed her life? She embarked on a love and kindness meditational yoga release. She recognized forgiving him had nothing to do with him, but everything to do with herself. We all need to take steps and practices to truly learn how to love ourselves. Figure out if you like yoga, or meditation, or reading. Find something you love to go do by youself, for yourself.
Sit in the middle of a room with no noise, no lights, sit and let your mind learn to love you
Quit School- know when to change your direction
Erin went to school after her brain injury. It was a big accomplishment for her to be able get an associates degree- even though it was hard! She couldn't remember what she read and school stressed her out, so after her associates she decided to take a break. She took a break, went back and ended up getting an undergraduate NCLEX nursing degree. Erin is now working at a mental health agency helping others realize they can fight back from depression and create the life they want and will love. What Erin learned over this life lesson is it's important to know when you need to take a break. Sometime you might need to change, and it's important to realize those time you need to change and make the turn.
“I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work.” - Thomas Edison
Your choice is ok- self validation
Whatever choice you make in life is ok. If you need to take years off work, that is ok. If you need to take fewer classes at school, that's ok.
A realization Erin had over the course of the 20 years since her TBI is every choice is ok as long as it is ok by you. Every decision you make, you just need your own approval. You don't need anyone elses justification that your decision in valid.
Today it is so easy to look for outside validation. There's Facebook, Snapchat, Twitter, Instagram...... So many ways you can share something with the masses to get their validation you are ok. "I can't believe they did that to you, you are right" "good job" "you are amazing" There are so many ways to get validation over social media, but do you need it?
The only person you need to validate your actions is yourself
It is ok to cry. It is ok to feel stressed out and that your life is going to sh*t.
Erin and I talk about how we both had to accept when we weren't happy. You have to acknowledge when you are sad. Cry. You have to cry. And then we had to get up and fix it. It is ok to feel sad. Just look at your life and realize you need to make a change to get happy. No one knows what that change is. Maybe it is going back to school, leaving your partner, switching careers, moving. No one but you knows why you are sad, and what change will make you happy.
It is ok to cry, but then you must wipe off your tears and make a change
Take a risk- Live in the moment of now
Erin never used to be a risk taker before her accident. She was simply playing a "safe" game of golf when tragedy struck. She never used to be a risk taker, but she decided to make a change. After her accident she realized how valuable the present moment is. it can change in a second, so don't wait. Don't let opportunities pass you by. Life is unpredictable, so don't let fear of failure hold you back. Dissect yourself-honestly.
Apply to that new job, kiss that boy, take that trip, love that baby, take that leap- live in the present moment
You never plan for your life to change in a moment, but it does. A car might crash. You might get fired. You might find out your dad just died. You might get married. You might get hired to a dream job. You might find out you are having a new baby. Life changes in an instant both good and bad.
Embrace the changes.
1. Forgive those around you in order to release yourself.
2. Figure out a way to love yourself.
3. Know when to make a change in your life.
4. The only person who needs to valid your decisions is yourself.
5. It is ok to feel sad, but then you need to figure out how to get happy again.
6. Take a risk and live in the present moment.
Set a goal for yourself that you know you can accomplish tomorrow,
Believe in the power of faith and miracles,
Set a big goal or tiny goal,
Take the leap,
"There's always gonna be another mountain, I'm always gonna wanna make it move, Always gonna be an uphill battle, Sometimes I'm gonna have to lose, Ain't about how fast I get there, Ain't about what's waiting on the other side, It's the climb" -Miley Cyrus
Jamie "MoCrazy" Crane-Mauzy
Talk Show Host- Life Gets MoCrazy on the Brain Injury Radio Network
Full-time student at Westminster College, SLC, Utah