Giving People a Sense of Hope

The purpose for my newsletter & podcast

I recently met with Substack writers in a celebration. We had all started our newsletter about a year ago the same month. As we gathered in small breakout rooms, we shared what we wrote and spoke about. There was one author who shared he hosts a podcast where he interviews colleagues and they talk about the sad state of the world. I shared that I offer solutions on how to cope with the stress at home, work, & community. We all laughed when he shared he didn’t feel the need to talk about hope or solutions. His podcast just focused on events happening. As I shared about my writings & podcast I said, ‘why would I feel a need to help to bring hope and help people cope….what does that say about me?’ I felt like an outcast…..internally I felt sad.

If you’ve ever been bullied, you will understand this. If you have not…keep reading with an effort to practice empathy. In a past work setting, there was a coworker who called me a ‘pollyanna’ in ridicule to my face. The work setting was in the mental health industry. I experienced this as bullying, as a colleague from college repeated this statement to me. He worked within the same industry, however in a public service setting. This co-worker had moved to his office and he had heard my name mentioned. She was spreading her thoughts about my credibility in the industry that I worked in, mocking my character. I respected him for telling me. The reason I bring this up is, I am needing to hear some feedback about my newsletter and podcast.

Some of us are more naturally optimistic and we all have a purpose to fulfill on this earth. I’ve always made the best of situations. I call this resilience. Hope has so much power. In mental health assessments for suicidal patients, it is one of the most powerful protective factors to consider when assessing their safety. My question is, ‘are we jaded as a society?’ I didn’t feel bullied or ridiculed in any way by this Substack cohort. It just brought up a lot of thoughts. I know as people when we want help, we can receive it, and when we don’t want help then no one can force it on us. The question is, do we see asking for help as a weakness? Most often yes. All I can say is, there is help available in many forms. Perhaps my content, personality, voice, etc. is a great fit for some and not for others. I have no problem with this, as what’s important is for the individual to get help. I am happy to refer my life coaching clients to another coach who is a better fit for them. If you want an optimistic outlook that is grounded in empirical research, then this is a great space for you.

I have been surprised my class on Udemy took off during the pandemic and has continued to get great reviews. What did I do? I was real. I gave hope. I also gave content that was relatable and practical. Despite the poor audio and video, people heard the message: empathy & hope. I am happy I recorded the class during the shutdown here in the US. At the time I was figuring out how to upgrade my equipment with what would work best for me. It took me a while to get what I needed. I am now glad I did not wait. Even though the quality of the recording is fair, the message has been well received. This speaks volumes there is an audience that values hope.

If you feel like you need more content like this, I would ask you to upgrade your subscription. Substack is not my company’s main source of income, and I have published a lot of material that is ‘free content.’ To make the paid content more accessible to a wider audience, I am reducing the monthly fee to $5, or $30 for the year. This includes a Substack app to download all of the podcast content, access to a library of videos, an e-book and all of the articles. I believe you will receive tremendous value with the content. The videos in the Ribbon Inc. video library can be accessed by paying members with the one caveat….you will need to create a Ribbon account, and then use the promo code to access the library.

When I served the lower socio-economic population in community mental health, I learned something valuable. When people pay for something, they find value in it. If it’s for free, then they don’t see it as valuable. In trainings, we were encouraged to charge and collect the copay for the session without feeling guilt. This population was on food stamps to give you a perspective.

My ask for you is that you sign up and share this newsletter with your networks so they can sign up as well. Let’s spread the wealth, as the cost is low. I have included all of the videos recorded during the COVID shut downs. People are still taking the Udemy class and benefiting from it. I looked at the reviews today and was amazed to continue to see some 5 star ratings. Some…not all:)

The truth is, I care about people and I want to help. If this makes me a pollyanna, in some people’s eyes, so be it. I would love to hear your feedback, comments, & questions!

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