What I Learned From Bob The Builder

What I Learned From Bob The Builder

We are not houses, we are homes.
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Remember Bob the Builder? When was the last time you thought about this little cartoon character who wore an adorable yellow hard hat, overalls and an orange/yellow checkered shirt?

There's always the chance that you might have never heard of Bob the Builder, which would mean that the last time you thought about him was never.

Regardless, if you are or are not familiar with Bob, the concept of "fixing" is not something that is unfamiliar to any of us. Whether the item being fixed is a leaky faucet, a burnt out light or a broken heart, we all have the tendency to try and fix things to make them new again so that we can cover up or replace the brokenness.

As bizarre as it is, Bob the Builder has been on my mind a lot lately (hence this article).

Bob and his co-characters had a theme song that they would launch into when a problem or construction project arose. The song went something along the lines of: "Can we fix it? Yes, we can!" The purpose of Bob and his theme song is to teach children how to problem solve with a positive attitude.

At our core, we tend to become a version of Bob, or for those of us who not under the age of 6, we become the "fixer-uppers" we often see on a channel like HGTV. The problem with this is that we ignore the fact that we are not houses, we are homes: we embody emotions, memories, good times and bad times, lessons learned, hopes, desires, regrets, relationships and the list could go on...

A house doesn't become a home until it has been built with love, withstood the test of time and experienced genuine care and patience.

We should strive to treat ourselves like homes, not houses. Just like actual homes, we too require love, time, patience and care.

The individuals on HGTV flip houses and turn them into homes. They fix what's wrong with the house and then provide the time and effort to make the house into a loveable home. This way, a buyer will come along and accept the home into their lives to continue providing it with love and care.

Again, we aren't houses, we are homes. We try and fix ourselves without realizing that we aren't the same as some creaky floors and peeling walls: we can't just be fixed with a "can-do attitude" and some elbow grease.

Bob the Builder can't just swoop in with his team and fix the things that we see are wrong with us and within our lives. We require healing, not fixing. "Fixing" buries the brokenness with band-aids and solutions while healing takes brokenness, loves and nurtures it with a patient spirit so that the brokenness becomes a part of us that we are able to grow from, not suppress and ignore.

When we treat ourselves like a house and try to patch up our brokenness with substances, spending sprees, eating away feelings or other forms of distractions, we make the brokenness worse.

After all, duct tape, band-aids, and improvement projects can only work for so long. Eventually, the pressure of suppressing this brokenness will become too much and everything that's been building up since the first patch up duct tape was laid will be set free.

We require acceptance, not improvement and as I recently heard from a speaker the other day, no amount of self-improvement can make up for a lack of self-acceptance.

This is what got me thinking about Bob and his theme song. Bob the Builder specializes in improvements. He fixes things, just like me and you try to do. However, no amount of self-improvement will cover up our lack of accepting ourselves as the well worn-in and lived-in homes that we are.

A home is a loveable place. Resist from trying to fix it and work on accepting it. All the home-improvement jobs in the world can't go back in time and redo a faulty foundation. They can fix it and they can cover it up, but they can't heal it of its brokenness.

That's the difference between being a house and a home. In a home, we accept things and by practicing acceptance, we are able to heal whatever it is that originally felt broken. In a house, we cover up the brokenness with improvements or duct tape but the brokenness remains buried beneath these fixes.

We are not Bob the Builder and we are not fixer-uppers. I find that when we stop trying to "fix" things and start trying to "heal" things, our home becomes a much nicer place to live.

Cover Image Credit: Unsplash

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To All The Nurses In The Making

We tell ourselves that one day it'll all pay off, but will it actually?
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I bet you’re taking a break from studying right now just to read this, aren’t you? Either at the library with friends or in your dorm room. Wherever you may be, you never get the chance to put your books down, at least that’s how it feels to most of us. It sucks feeling like you’ve chosen the hardest major in the world, especially when you see other students barely spending any time studying or doing school work. The exclamation “You’re still here!” is an all too frequent expression from fellow students after recognizing that you’ve spent 10-plus hours in the library. At first it didn’t seem so bad and you told yourself, “This isn’t so difficult, I can handle it,” but fast-forward a few months and you’re questioning if this is really what you want to do with your life.

You can’t keep track of the amount of mental breakdowns you’ve had, how much coffee you’ve consumed, or how many times you’ve called your mom to tell her that you’re dropping out. Nursing is no joke. Half the time it makes you want to go back and change your major, and the other half reminds you why you want to do this, and that is what gets you through it. The thing about being a nursing major is that despite all the difficult exams, labs and overwhelming hours of studying you do, you know that someday you might be the reason someone lives, and you can’t give up on that purpose. We all have our own reasons why we chose nursing -- everyone in your family is a nurse, it’s something you’ve always wanted to do, you’re good at it, or like me, you want to give back to what was given to you. Regardless of what your reasoning is, we all take the same classes, deal with the same professors, and we all have our moments.

I’ve found that groups of students in the same nursing program are like a big family who are unconditionally supportive of each other and offer advice when it’s needed the most. We think that every other college student around us has it so easy, but we know that is not necessarily true. Every major can prove difficult; we’re just a little harder on ourselves. Whenever you feel overwhelmed with your school work and you want to give up, give yourself a minute to imagine where you’ll be in five years -- somewhere in a hospital, taking vitals, and explaining to a patient that everything will be OK. Everything will be worth what we are going through to get to that exact moment.

Remember that the stress and worry about not getting at least a B+ on your anatomy exam is just a small blip of time in our journey; the hours and dedication suck, and it’s those moments that weed us out. Even our advisors tell us that it’s not easy, and they remind us to come up with a back-up plan. Well, I say that if you truly want to be a nurse one day, you must put in your dedication and hard work, study your ass off, stay organized, and you WILL become the nurse you’ve always wanted to be. Don’t let someone discourage you when they relent about how hard nursing is. Take it as motivation to show them that yeah, it is hard, but you know what, I made it through.

With everything you do, give 110 percent and never give up on yourself. If nursing is something that you can see yourself doing for the rest of your life, stick with it and remember the lives you will be impacting someday.

SEE ALSO: Why Nursing School Is Different Than Any Other Major

Cover Image Credit: Kaylee O'Neal

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I Love The Way I Look

The man upstairs owns a mirror.

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So is the headline too overconfident?

I've never been one to write about or even talk about body image. It's one of those topics that we often try to avoid. My best friend and I love to go shopping, and every time we go you can bet we're encouraging each other and lifting one another up. Yet, as I scroll through social media and have casual conversations with other girls my age, you tend to notice that now just about every girl on the planet is insecure about at least one thing about themselves. Most of the time it's about our outer appearance rather than our inner appearance. Trust me, I HAVE BEEN THERE. We try it all. We diet, we work out in order to lose weight or look "more toned" in order to look this so-called "better." We try new healthy foods, follow fitness plans, we even watch fitness videos in our free time. We cover our faces in makeup to cover up the "mess" underneath. We want to be taller/shorter etc. But I'm here to tell you the hardcore truth...are you ready for this?

You are always going to be happy with the way you look. Yep, you read that right, HAPPY.

No matter how hard you try to fix these "things" about you, some of them can't be changed. You know that pretty awesome man upstairs? God? He's made us this way for a reason. He didn't want you to look like the girls around you or the ones on TV. He wanted you for you. The good man owns a mirror.

Alright, alright you've heard this a million times before, I know. But girl, have you read Romans 12:2 lately?

-"Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is...His good, pleasing, and perfect will."

I challenge you to go back and read that one twice. More if you need to. The problem is that we are giving these labels to people as if they're name tags. These name tags almost become permanent on us, and we can't shake them off. Instead of judging, instead of the whispers and the "looks," we need to be lifting each other up. Point out the positives that you were given and the positives of those around you. If we all looked alike, imagine how boring life would be.

You don't have to impress anyone. Did you hear that one? You do not have to impress any person. God loves you for you, and in reality, isn't that all that matters? People who understand this will also love you for you. Be the uplifting woman in this world. Be mobile of positivity. In the end, it doesn't matter what we look like. Use the love that the good Lord is giving you and pass it out to the world around you.

1 Thessalonians 1:4- "God not only loves you very much but also has put his hand on you for something special."

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