On today’s episode, we are continuing part two of my story. Itâs funny because originally, I was going to do eight episodes to tell my story, but I felt like I was leaving out a major part of my life during that timeâthe mental breakdown that occurred after that February 19, 2019. This episode was actually the last episode I recorded after deciding that I don’t care what people think. I feel like I need to share this part of my story for others, like my friend Josh, who have struggled with their own mental health battles. I hope that this encourages you if you are battling things mentally and are struggling. I hope this encourages you to have hope and faith. If you’re not struggling, there are people around you who are that you can help. Going back to that day, February 26, 2019, I didnât want to live anymoreâI thought my life was over. I felt like I had unjustly been fired from a job that I was successful atâthat I had never been disciplined for once. In fact, I had received multiple promotions with multiple institutions. I was shell-shocked and hopeless. I called my friend Vincent Pugliese, who is amazing, and he told me that it was actually the best day of my life because I could build something in the entrepreneurial world, but at the time I was in no place to hear it. I felt worthless. As people learned I had lost my job, they criticized and judged me, saying mean and hurtful things instead of supporting me. They accused me of hiding the real reason I lost my job. I spent the next three or four months spiraling downward, thinking of killing myself every day. There were many hard conversations and tears between Valerie and I during that time. Through it all, the support she gave me was incredible and I love her so much. Pregnant with our first child, she called me from work multiple times a day to make sure I was alive. She made me promise that I would be here when she got home from work in the evening. I am convinced that I wouldnât be here without her constant encouragementâher insistence that she needed me and was proud of me. That time in my life embarrasses me now, and I never thought I would share this journey with anyoneâbut in September of 2020, my friend Josh posted on Facebook about wanting to kill himself. I spent days trying to track him down, messaging his friends and family members, to do everything I could to make sure he didnât take his own life. I finally connected with Josh after he had spent some time in the hospital getting help. He told me I could never understand because my life was âperfectâ. I cried as I talked to him on the phone, sharing my story. He was shocked that someone who seemed to âhave it all togetherâ and looked so happy could struggle with their mental health and have suicidal thoughts. This is when I realized I had an obligation to share my story, not for my benefit or to look good, but because I didnât want one other person to consider taking their own life because they thought no one else could understand. I still check in with Josh and try to encourage him because I have also learned that mental health struggles are not something you deal with once and theyâre goneâitâs something that you must stay vigilant and fight against. You may only struggle every couple of years, or it could be a monthly or daily battle. Less than two weeks after talking to Josh, I attended my first Total Freedom Life retreat. That weekend changed my lifeâit gave me meaning and purpose, and I no longer felt alone as many do in business and their entrepreneurial life. I had my board of directors and my TLF family. I grew spiritually and emotionally. At the time, I told very few friends and almost no family about my struggles because I felt judged and looked down upon. I wasn’t interested in their criticism, so there were only a couple people I could trust, a few friends and my wifeâpeople who just loved and cared about me. I wouldn’t be here without a handful of amazing peopleâin the deepest and darkest struggles, I was so thankful to have people that I could talk to. These great friends who supported me during those hard months were some of the reasons I lived, if Iâm honest. I want all of you to know that you have meaning and purpose and there is hope. If youâre struggling with your mental health, reach out to someone for help. If you know someone who is struggling, be that encouragement, be that help for them.
Free social media coaching calls are back! To schedule your free social media coaching call go to:https://calendly.com/realestatesurvivalguide/social-media-strategy-for-realtors
Podcast edited by Kenny Carfagno.
Show notes and blog posts are created by Jennifer Harshman and RealtorEmails. John Schuchman is a licensed REALTORÂ® in Lancaster, PA, with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Homesale Realty and a part of the Andrew Welk Group. The opinions shared on this show represent the opinions & values of John Schuchman and do not necessarily represent the opinions & values of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Homesale Realty. The opinions & ideas shared in this podcast do not guarantee or promise any results of success to the listener.
328: The Power of Sharing Your Story