My Humanity Is Showing
Ever struggled with fear, depression, anger, or any other emotional pain (maybe even as recently as a few minutes ago)? I have. Actually, I still do. My Humanity is Showing is the story of how I navigate a life of imperfection and find hope by embracing my humanity, surrounding myself with caring people, and being vulnerable. This podcast is for broken humans like me who are looking for hope beyond the clouds. My prayer is that you find something in my shares that is not of me but rather through me.Feel free to reach me at Amjed@myhumanityisshowing.com
Don’t exclude me
There have been many things I have done and not done while trying to “fit in.” In this episode, I reflect on the impact of inclusion on my life.
Beautifully broken me
I work hard to remind myself to not only embrace my imperfections, but that through them I can be a better version of myself just as the gold-filled cracks of the Japanese tradition of Kintsugi adds to the beauty and resilience of once broken pottery.
In this episode, I share a recent challenge I had with self-criticism and how I worked through it.
I need help… (examining self-talk)
I often find myself repeating words and phrases I heard growing up, without even realizing it. In many cases, these phrases are negative self-talk. I call these the “old tapes” I play. In this episode, I reflect on some recent challenges with negative self-talk and examples of implicit bias that are hidden in my lexicon, and some ways I can work to “re-record” those internal messages.
Note: I mention a book I read in my youth. Unfortunately, I cannot remember or find the name of the book.
I am worthy to live (988 episode)
I dedicate this episode to to World Suicide Prevention Day, and share my own experiences with suicidal ideation and attempts. My aim is to remove the stigma and foster a dialogue about mental health struggles. The last time I seriously considered ending my life was in February 2007, when I finally found the courage to ask for help. As a result, I have gradually learned a new way of life, replacing self-annihilation thoughts with self-care and respect.
Please help share the new suicide and crisis hotline number 988…
Trigger warning: suicidal thoughts and attempts discussed
Special Note: Episode 34 “Fear drives my dysfunction…” re-recorded
This is a special note about episode 34, “Fear drives my dysfunction…” A dedicated listener (and dear friend) highlighted an issue with the audio file, leading me to learn that the original recording was a garbled mess, followed by silence.
Fortunately, I was able to re-record and replace the faulty file. Sadly, the original recording is lost in the ether, but the new version should cover some of the key points and even features the same random message. If you had attempted the listen before or are intrigued by the title, I invite you to download/re-download and listen...
What labor means to me…
As Labor Day nears, I find myself drawn into contemplating the essence of work and labor in my life. Join me as I share some reflections on “what labor means to me.”
My survival depends on letting go…
In this episode, I share about the powerful tool of surrender as a way to find peace and accept my own imperfections…
Don’t put me in a bucket!
In this episode, I share my reflections on why people stereotype and why I particularly find it troublesome…
I aspire for positive vulnerability…
In the pursuit of showing my humanity, I have been aspiring to make it a positive experience for all involved. In this episode, I share about the podcast and my recent posting about it on social media. In the process, I stumbled across an interesting realization about vulnerability.
I aspire to be more flexible…
As a youth, I remember watching Mary Lou Retton win the gold medal in the 1984 Summer Olympics for a perfect vault. At the time, I was actively participating in gymnastics and working hard on my handstands and flexibility. Over the years, I have become less flexible. In this episode, as I reflected on physical flexibility, it made me also ponder the extent of my mental/emotional rigidity.
Note: I mentioned a physical injury to my hand that could be triggering to some.
Fear drives my dysfunction…
In this episode, I share about how I believe that fear is the main driver of dysfunctional behavior; therefore, it is better for me to approach others with compassion and try to address their fears rather than judge them.
How wealthy am I?
In this episode, I reflect on the meaning of the concept of wealth. In my life, I often find a desire to accumulate wealth. This especially happens when I look to the lifestyles of the rich and famous and think to myself, “It sure would be nice to have a personal jet, several cars, mansion with elegant swimming pools, and the love and admiration of many…” After an interesting conversation with a friend, I began to ask the simple question, “How wealthy am I?”
Am I free? - July 4th Episode
“Love can only exist in freedom. The true lover seeks the good of his beloved which requires especially the liberation of the beloved from the lover.” Anthony De Mello in The Way to Love
In this episode, I share some reflections about what “freedom” means to me.
In this episode, I reflected on the meaning of Memorial Day and let the stream of consciousness flow. Perhaps there is some benefit hidden in my share.
Trigger warnings: mentions of war, human trafficking, death, depression
I had a bad day, only one
In this episode, I shared about a emotionally challenging day resulting from my own shame and fear of rejection. I am grateful for the miracle that this was only one day rather than several days, or even months, as it would have been in the past.
Trigger warning: mental health issues, suicide, depression
I’m just a spoon
“Make me a channel/instrument of Thy Peace…” from then St. Francis Prayer (I believe I accidentally called it the Lord’s Prayer). In this episode, I share about my desire to make a difference in the world and “leave my legacy”: my vain attempt at immortality. That being said, I have found the most peace in just being a spoon - you’ll have to listen to the episode to understand what that means.
Is something wrong with me?
This was a particularly difficult episode to record. I shared about a very embarrassing behavior from early in my marriage. I’m grateful today for clarity around my reaction to help me see that I am not possessed or evil.
I’m nick-naming this the “French Fry episode.” You’ll have to listen to understand why.
What brings me joy?
This was an interesting episode for me. I started by sharing my fear that I’ll soon no longer be relevant and my podcast might one day become repetitive. Before I knew it, I was sharing about my recent experience with a Whole Health Coach and the results of her asking a simple question, “What brings you joy?”
Trigger Warning: Mental Health, Suicide
I choose to focus on the present
“True happiness is to enjoy the present, without anxious dependence upon the future, not to amuse ourselves with either hopes or fears but to rest satisfied with what we have, which is sufficient, for he that is so, wants nothing.” - Seneca
In this episode, I reflect on how focusing on the present has helped my deal with fear/anxiety and resentment/regret.
Can someone like me make an impact?
In this episode, I share some reflections on black and white thinking, imposter thoughts, and my desperate need for validation, acceptance, and inclusion.
I am beautifully imperfect
Imperfection - God’s perfect plan to stay actively involved in our lives… In this episode, I reflect on some of my recent errors and reflections on how beautiful imperfection can be.
I crave human connection
In this episode I share some of my experiences and reflections around the importance of human connection, in particular when I can be of service.
I have dysfunctional empathy
In this episode, I share some reflections on sympathy, empathy, and my struggles with balancing empathy with self-care.
I don’t want to burn out
In this episode, I share about the importance of keeping some laughter in my life.
My perspectometer is broken!
“I’d like some fresh, clear, well seasoned perspective.” - Anton Ego from Ratatouille. In this episode, I discuss a concept I recently stumbled upon that I find helpful to remind me to always check the stories that I assign to the world and myself.
Till my time comes, can I keep smiling?
After a frightening flight (may have been mild for those without a fear of flying) and some experiences around aging family this past week, I share in this episode about mortality, aging, the elderly.
Trigger warnings: suicide, flying, elder care
But for Grace, I don’t judge me
Judgment is used by those who have been given authority to assign value to things. For example, a building inspector has the training and authority to determine if construction meets or doesn’t meet the standards. Assigning value without authority is a form of insane pride. In this episode, I explore this topic further.
Trigger warnings: depression, suicide
Tell me about the good old days
In this episode, I share some reflections about the impact nostalgia has on my personality. In many ways, I am a collection of my memories.
I am so sorry - but why?
I have a hard time seeing myself as a valuable person who is allowed to ask for assistance from others. My tendency is to start requests with “I am so sorry to bother you…” or add “I am high maintenance…” I many ways I am addicted to shame.
Today, I seek to show myself some respect and ask for what I need without succumbing to my shame.
Which team am I rooting for? - Super Bowl episode
With Super Bowl LVII coming up, several people are asking me, “Which team are you rooting for: Chiefs or Eagles?” In this episode, I share my experiences with football and other competitive team sports.
I do not like flying
I am not a fan of flying! Everything from airports to plane exhaust bothers me. Most of all, I hate not being in the cockpit flying the plane. I have a strong need to be in control. In this episode, I reflect on my journey from unchecked control to the freedom that comes from release.
Part 2: Do I know a God? (Religion vs Spirituality)
In this week’s episode, we continue where we left off last week with the rest of the recording from the live session on the Wisdom app.
In my teens, I became committed to religion. This was the start of a long journey of seeking perfection on faith. Through my own personal struggles, I was led to a break from religion while I strived to “meet” God. Today, my religious practice is nowhere as tightly constructed as it once was; however, I have been fortunate to grow along spiritual lines. This episode is Part 2 of a two part e...
Part 1: Do I know a God? (Religion vs Spirituality)
In my teens, I became committed to religion. This was the start of a long journey of seeking perfection on faith. Through my own personal struggles, I was led to a break from religion while I strived to “meet” God. Today, my religious practice is nowhere as tightly constructed as it once was; however, I have been fortunate to grow along spiritual lines. This episode is Part 1 of a two part exploration of the topic.
Note- The opening reading is from pg 83 of the book Walking on Water by Anthony De Mello.
Trigger warnings: depression, suici...
I won’t live forever
“Sweet Dreams are made of this…” I stumbled upon this famous song at the end of the episode and it reminded me of the famous sililoquy about suicidal ideation “To be or not to be, that is the question,” in which Hamlet asks himself about life after death and “what dreams may come?” In this episode, I touch on the topic of mortality and my reluctance to get medical care from providers I don’t know.
Trigger warning: cancer, death, dental care, oral surgery
Our cultures can bring us closer
With the start of a new year on the Gregorian Calendar, I shared my experiences with another calendar (Hijri). This opened up a discussion on various holidays, customs, traditions, languages, and cultures and how these can be divisive or binding depending on how I choose to view them. The random message of this episode was rather interesting and brought an additional discussion about viewing the world through the loving eyes of a child. Note: this episode is longer than usual due to how excited I got talking about cultures.
Trigger warning: depression, suicide
Oh no, I feel left out
I have always struggled with a tremendous fear of missing out (FOMO). In particular, holidays and vacations create a feeling in me of being abandoned. Over time, I have learned to support the positive voice inside me that presents me with a more realistic picture of what’s happening as opposed to the negative self-view voice.
Trigger warning: depression, suicide
I got the Sunday night blues
It seems that Sunday evenings are often heavy for me as I mentally prepare to face the week. In this episode, I explore the narratives that may be fueling my discontent with the start of the work week.
Trigger warning: depression, suicide
Can I let go?
I live under the illusion of control. I have often believed that any success I have experienced in my life is the direct result of how hard I have tried to control the outcomes. In recent years, I have come to believe that the more I can let go (insert Disney song here), the better things tend to turn out.
Trigger warning: depression, suicide
What’s your name… again?
Lately I have been struggling with what seems to be increasing memory issues: forgetting names, what I was doing, making mistakes, etc… This tempts me to shame myself and want to indulge self-loathing. I refuse to believe that I am a bad person because I have a very human memory. As with previous episodes, I do not plan or script the content. Instead, I ask for the share and allow it to flow through me. It’s scary for sure. In this episode, I realized I started to talk about certain experiences and then got redirected elsewhere. Listeners may not...
It’s my choice
When I was in college, I had a pretty dark view of life. I often quoted Hamlet (Shakespeare’s play about a suicidal Danish prince) and wished for death. One of the most common phrases I frequently said was: "life sucks, and then you die!" In those days, I chose to feed the darkness inside myself by constantly reinforcing the negative perspective.
Today, I choose to focus on the positive. I am definitely not 100% at this, but my life is incredibly better. In this episode, I share some stories and quotes that helped shape my current view on...