I lay in my bed staring at the ceiling, feeling crushed. Not a single cell in my body wanted to get out of bed.
I’d put everything I had into finding the right apartment in Brooklyn by August 1 when I needed to move and now all hope of making that happen had been dashed.
It was now July 29. The day before, I’d found out I didn’t get the apartment I had my heart set on. The landlord strung the application process along for a week just to choose someone else in the end. They’d received numerous applications and chose someone else.
(Getting an apartment in NYC is akin to putting an offer on a house and going through the process of applying for a loan).
Who’d have thought there would be so many people looking for apartments to move into during COVID?
At that point, I had spent two months searching and applied for half-a-dozen apartments just to end up back at the drawing board with only three days until my desired move date of August 1. My anxiety-ridden brain was convincing me I was doomed to never find a place I’d like.
To be honest, as I lay there on my bed, I gave into the apathy and self-pity for a good hour (or three). I followed up with recriminating myself for feeling down when so many people had far worse concerns to deal with.
After feeling the feelings for a while, I finally peeled myself out of bed, cracked open my laptop, and brought up StreetEasy just in case I’d missed a promising lead on an apartment.
Five minutes later, I was looking at photos of a two-level Brooklyn brownstone apartment that met and even exceeded my top five list of “must-haves” (a rare thing when looking for an apartment in NYC).
Today, I’m writing this email from my dream apartment in Brooklyn. I just moved in last week. It turns out, this place is even better than any of the others that fell through.
Had I listened to my anxiety-ridden brain, I would have given up and missed out on a situation that was even better than I imagined.
We’re all feeling beat down by everything going on in the world right now.
While we need to make space for rest, to feel things, to register what we are experiencing and how hard it is, we can also keep taking one step forward at a time.
My apartment hunting experience was an excellent reminder that we never know when we are just one step away from the things we want (or something that’s even better).
Sure, it’s might not happen as quickly as it did with my apartment hunt, but the things we want most will never happen if we listen to the part of our brain that tells us to give up.
Brené Brown was criticized, rejected, and put in her place dozens of times before her TED talk changed everything for her, leading to the world-changing body of work we all know her for today.
Whatever you might be striving for and struggling through right now, whatever circumstances you are wrestling with…keep going.
I read the following quote this week in an excellent article by Shane Snow about post-traumatic growth.
“Surprising as it may sound, research indicates that nearly twice as many people who go through a trial or accident will come out the other side of it having become better rather than worse.”
There is so much good for you to do in this world and so much good for you to enjoy.