April 13, 2018

What Do Nashville, Cults And Your Family Have in Common When It Comes To Growing As A Person

One of my favourite must watch tv series is Nashville. I first heard about it before it premiered in the US as I was actually in Nashville for CMA Fest, a 4 day music festival where I just happened to be standing about 5 meters from where Hayden Panettiere (Juliette Barnes) was being interviewed and was talking about the new show.

I have been addicted ever since. Country music + Drama = Many Many Tears.

Fair warning before you keep reading this, there may be some spoiler alerts in this piece if you are not up to date.

Juliette has had a somewhat turbulent storyline in Nashville, but let’s face it, that’s the drama we want to watch because you just can’t believe what’s happening. Yet she seems to pick herself back up again.

Being addicted to drugs, alcohol, going in and out of rehab. Abandoning her baby and husband to go on tour and party was one season. Another was her recovery from her private plane crashing and leaving her paralysed right AFTER she had decided to leave her partying ways behind and return to her family. After much soul searching through a small church Juliette came back, was able to walk and attempted to release another album, a gospel one this time, after that didn’t go well, she started doing some shady things again.

This girl just doesn’t know where to draw the line, but she also grew up in a completely unstable life with an alcoholic mum that did not give her anywhere close to a normal childhood with a morals compass.

In this latest season we are seeing the struggle that Juliette has as she decides that she doesn’t like the person that she has become and wants to not just get a band aid fix, but really work on improving herself so that she can be a better wife, a better mum and an all round better person.

Juliette finds someone that begins to mentor her and it turns out this guy has a whole tribe of people around him that follow the same principles and have all overcome struggles in their lives and come out the other side of it with a new perspective.

Juliette feels at peace around these people, feels as though they are real with her and that she can trust them.

You can see her starting her journey of self discovery and actually becoming a better person. For instance, went and helped on a construction site to build homes for people in need. No special treatment, no help or assistance was given to her she was expected to do things for herself once told how to do them.

The grin on her face at the sense of accomplishment when she finished the task that she clearly thought she couldn’t do, well that smile said everything about how she had just taken a huge leap forward.

I know it’s a TV show, but this storyline is one that is relative to so many of you, wait till I get to the good bit in just a minute.

The biggest problem Juliette is now facing is that her husband, Avery, thinks she has joined a cult. He is worried about her and shares his feelings with other people in Juliettes life to try to get everyone concerned about this “Cult” she has joined.

This storyline is still unraveling as I type this as the season isn’t over, but I want to share why my heart breaks for Juliette with this particular storyline.

This is the first storyline where I feel as though I may have anything actually in common with this superstar.

The struggle of wanting to be better than you are and wanting to grow and move forward but not having anyone around you understand what you are going through and why, it can be so frustrating to constantly feel as though you need to justify it.

I get Avery (her husband) is concerned about her after all the things that have happened to her. BUT - the place that his fear also comes from is that it’s easier to know what’s going to happen day to day if you KNOW what that person is like, whether it’s good or bad.

When you don’t know what someone is going to be like, it creates a level of uncertainty. Are they going to leave me? Are they going to think that I am not good enough for them anymore? Are they going to force all these things on me that I don’t want to know about? What’s going to happen?

When you are going through a massive change, people around say they want what’s best for you, but what they REALLY want is for you to stay the same, because that’s what they know.

That’s what they are comfortable with. They also may be the same as you in characteristics, so if you change it means that they may need to change to keep the relationship, whether it be romantic or a friendship. They are scared that if you change that there won’t be a place for them anymore. So they will do anything to protect themselves from that hurt and pain that they are imagining.

In some circumstances, they are imagining it all and you have no intention of leaving a relationship or dumping friends, depending on who your caring person is in your life.

In other circumstances, you will want to make a change and you may want to change the people that are in it. You may want to give them the chance to change and step up with you. They may take that chance, or they may run far away from it. If that happens, that’s ok because they aren’t the people that are meant to be in the next stage of your life.

Why I resonate so much with this storyline in Nashville is because over 5 years ago I started working with a new mentor. I was so excited and was doing all these business things and also doing a lot of personal development.

I was becoming a better person and engaging in things that made me happy and feel better about myself.

I was recognising old patterns that I did not want to repeat.

My husband at the time was very resistant to everything that I was doing. There was always sarcasm in his replies to me when I would tell him about something my mentors said to me or something that happened at an event.

It got to the point where I stopped telling him.

Then I told him I wanted a divorce.

He asked me if my mentors told me to do this to him.

AH NO - this was my decision.

It’s all because in a way he had been feeling as though I had joined a cult without him and he knew I was growing as a person and his fear was that I would leave him.

In this situation that is what happened but there is a lot of other stuff that happened to lead up to it - let me put it to you like this, there is probably an entire books worth of back story that lead to that decision!

I see this scenario from Nashville and my life, play out in many of my students lives too. Not necessarily ending in relationship break down, but the fear from people around them as they see them become better people.

It’s completely not what you would expect the reaction to be, right?

It’s just because they are scared and worried about themself, not actually worried about you.

You have a decision to make though.

You can stop your journey of self discovering and improving your life, because they told you that it was wrong, it was a cult, they don’t know what they are talking about… insert any other random negative thought process. When you stop, you’ll fall back into the old habits and being in that kind of environment is unlikely to have you decide to step out of it again.

Or you can reassure them that you are ok. Learn to block the negative out and keep moving forward, hoping that one day they realise that you have done the best thing possible for yourself and the people around you as you better YOU.

It’s hard to try to explain to people around you what you are experiencing when you are working with a mentor, because they aren’t in there with you. The biggest lesson I’ve learnt over the years is to

stop trying to explain it to people that will most likely NEVER understand.

You are the only person that you can control, so control your thoughts, your actions and see where it takes you.

You just need to be the change and the people that are meant to be there with you, will be.

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