Spoiler alert, I am a human being!
My journey to self-discovery and self-awareness came from being broken and damaged and wanting more from my own life. It came from reading great advice and watching inspiring Ted-Talks, and then taking that information, and implementing it into my life. It then went on to me studying life coaching.
I found myself in a situation recently, where I allowed a toxic individual back into my space. I knew what this person bought to the table. My intuition was screaming at me to stop and pay attention to the triggers. I ignored my reservations. I shut off my gut feeling. I ignored all the previous patterns of behaviour. I told myself that I was doing the right thing for them. This person needed me, and I was the only one who was able to help.
Over time, every reservation I had became a reality. The lies developed, the disregard of my time and space started. Boundaries were disrespected. I was being devalued. I felt like I was losing my mind.
I had put aside things that I am incredibly passionate about. I had started isolating myself from relationships that bought me joy. I had neglected my self-care. I had altered so many aspects of my life to make allowance for this one person. I was fighting my intuition and slipping into a crippling state of anxiety. I was on track to allowing this person to tear my world apart, again. The hardest part of challenging these thoughts, was that I was convinced that this was my doing, my fault, and I had to just suck it up and see it through.
Personal development is an epic marathon. Personally, to change the unrealistic rules I created for myself has been my biggest stumbling block. The rule I struggle most to silence, is that I am responsible for this person. That there has to be something I can say or do that will make them see themselves through my eyes. It is this deeply routed notion that has been reinforced and rewarded time and time again. I get satisfaction and self-worth from helping them.
To understand why it is unrealistic, is to understand that it costs me myself. It costs me who I am to the core. I will ignore my gut instincts. I will ignore my needs. I will ignore my goals and desires. I will ignore that I am depleting my energy. I will keep going until I can’t actually ignore it because I am so drained. Mentally as well as physically I have nothing more to give to anything. I am angry, I am frustrated and I am ashamed.
Its a terrible cycle to find yourself in.
I know how difficult change can be. I know how many times you will stumble before you succeed. I know the level of commitment that is required for the change to be a possibility, and then the strength that you have to muster up to accept a failure, forgive yourself and do it all over again, challenging yourself to do it differently.
Personal Development is not easy. Despite the fact that it is all conceptually simple and practical and logical, it is probably the most challenging process of change you will ever endure. BUT, when you have that break-through it is so unbelievably worth it. I cannot stress that enough. That one small break-through gives way to momentum, and when momentum is in play, you propel yourself into change.
Once a profound truth has been seen, it cannot be ‘unseen’. There’s no ‘going back’ to the person you were. Even if such a possibility did exist… why would you want to? ~Dave SimTweet
I am a soul, with a life, and feelings, and insecurities. Just like you. So much of the advice I give, is because I have endured the pain, the confusion, the anger and the feeling that on some level I am inadequate. I challenge that mental space daily, looking for ways to create my full life, but I don’t get it right every time.
At the beginning of my journey there was this need for me to be great at this. Perfect if you will. That woman, Oh My Goodness, how I can look at her and have a good chuckle now. You don’t need to get this right every time. You just need to get it right consistently more and more over time.
You will, and you should stumble. If you, like me in this instance, catch yourself when everything starts to fall apart. That is okay. Just get up, dust off your guilt and shame, and wherever you are, start there. Start to challenge your thoughts. Start to do more of the things that bring you joy. Pick that one thing that you know energizes you and do that. Re-evaluate your boundaries. Journal the absolute hell out of your mental space. Do what you need to do to gain momentum.
Understand that the break-through is not going to be this big event that happens for you. It is going to be the gradual realization that you will no longer tolerate feeling guilty for putting your own needs first. It may even be feeling less bound to the need for validation or recognition because you realize this beautiful premise; You, as you are, every flaw, every fiber, are everything you need.