Letting go of the good little girl

Written by Amie on April 8, 2014 – 3:27 am -

 “You know the truth by the way it feels” ~India Arie

 

if I stand in my truth, I am not a nice person

The a-ha moments just keep coming. And for that I am grateful. Not always excited to go through the uncomfortable stages of the process, but once I’m on the other side, I feel relief and I feel as though I have shed more of the deeply held beliefs that sometimes keep me stuck. My latest a-ha moment has been floating around in my body for a while, but I just wasn’t exactly sure what it was. Until now. Now I know exactly what it is. It is the deeply held belief that if I stand in my truth, I am not a nice person. I am not a “good girl”. I am a troublemaker. This also goes along with the other belief I thought was true. The belief that tells me I am assumed bad and I must try to convince people of my inherent goodness. I am using the terms good/bad here just for reference points. I don’t really believe in the terms good/bad as they are used in our society. But that’s for another post. I wrote about it hereAnyway, I came to realize that my automatic reaction to someone who is criticizing me or judging me is to try to defend myself. I am grateful that I am able to observe myself now rather than get sucked into the old belief.

this nagging feeling

What I didn’t realize before now is that no matter what I say, I will never be seen for who I really am as long as I am not complying with their wishes. In other words, if I don’t continue doing things “the way we have always done them”, I will be seen in a way that benefits them. It makes so much sense to me now as to why I was so harsh on myself. When a person has to constantly defend their own truth, the negative can very well start seeping into their core. Especially if this way of being has been years in the making. Thankfully, I started down the road to self-love a few years ago, and I do love myself now, which feels so freeing! However, I hadn’t realized exactly what this nagging feeling was that continued to hang around. When I chose to set boundaries instead of going back to business as usual, this  old way of being came to light. I saw very clearly that I had been conditioned to believe I am a bad person if I voice beliefs that don’t follow protocol, so to speak. If I speak out against the things that hurt my heart or hurt others, I am labeled a troublemaker or someone who is weak or selfish.

 I stand up for what I believe in

I don’t want to be the good little girl anymore. And I stopped being that girl a few years ago. This does not mean I am a bad person. This doesn’t mean I think my way is better than someone else’s way.  This means I stand up for what I believe in and I follow my heart, even if it goes against what others may believe. Being a good girl meant that I followed what others wanted me to do. Being a good girl meant that I shut off my own needs and my own voice so that others could remain in their own stories. I was a good girl so that others could stay comfortable. Thankfully, that girl gets a rest now. She has my love and compassion, but she is no longer choosing the familiar way. The familiar way led me to a deep dark hole of depression. If I would have stayed in the “safe zone” of continuing to be the good little girl, I would not be in a very healthy place right now. I finally broke free. I finally stopped being the good little girl who tried to meet everyone else’s needs while starving myself in the process.

To just merely exist is not living

When I realized how starved I was, I began down the path to self-love. I thought I was being “good” by always taking other people’s needs into account before my own. I didn’t know a different way existed. Until I learned another way. I learned to nurture myself and to love myself. I learned that taking care of me did not mean I would ignore everyone else. It meant that I matter, my needs matter, and I will follow my truth. I learned that yes,I was born for a reason, and it is my duty to figure out why I am here. To just merely exist is not living. I was not fully alive until I began listening to and trusting my heart. If we were all to take care of our internal emotional wounding, and learn that we are important and we deserve our own love, the whole world would change. We can only love others as much as we love ourselves. The more we heal our wounds, the more we are available to really authentically help others. We would no longer help others from a place of obligation; we would help them because we have room in our hearts to fully, authentically help them. So, I choose being an authentic, loving woman, and I let that good little girl have a very long rest.

 

This is so beautiful…gratitude.

 

“Until you heal the wounds of your past, you are going to bleed. You can bandage the bleeding with food, with alcohol, with drugs,with work, with cigarettes, with sex; But eventually it will all ooze through and stain your life. You must find the strength to open the wounds, stick your hands inside, pull out the core of the pain that is holding you in your past, the memories, and make peace with them.”~Iyanla Vanzant

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Healing takes a lot of hard work; moving to self-love

Written by Amie on May 13, 2013 – 1:45 am -

buried who they truly are, what they truly desire, how they truly feel, and possibly negative or traumatic experiences that carry guilt and/or shame.

Changing your pattern to self-love will take work. But coming to a place of self-love will be the best reward you can ever imagine! Trust me when I say I know what it feels like to feel hopeless and stuck. And please trust me when I say, we are meant to love ourselves. I believe this with every ounce of my being. Does that mean our lives should be without heartache or difficulties or grief? Absolutely not. We will have all of these experiences because we are human and because we desire love and connection with other humans. But if we are in an emotionally healthy place, these experiences may be difficult, but we will be able to see them in a much different light than we do if we are in a place of self-hate. When a person is in a deep place of self hate, they may act out in all sorts of unhealthy ways. For example, one might lie about a situation in order to protect themselves emotionally rather than choose to be vulnerable and admit how they hurt someone they love. One may choose to overeat, or drink too much alcohol, etc., in order to try to block out feelings of self-hatred/guilt/shame.  Sometimes it is difficult to “see” this in a person who appears to have it all together. Most people have learned to have two (or more) personalities. One is the personality they display when they do not wish to be authentic, honest, etc. (in protection mode, or denial) The other is their “true” self, which mostly gets lost or buried until a person is able to love themselves, or desire a more authentic way of being. Depression comes when a person is completely hiding their true self, in an attempt to protect themselves emotionally.  They have buried who they truly are, what they truly desire, how they truly feel, and possibly negative or traumatic experiences that carry guilt and/or shame.

people who can be unkind to a loved one but then turn around two seconds later and be kind

I want to write about how to begin the journey to self-love and self-compassion. Have you met people who can be unkind to a loved one but then turn around two seconds later and be kind to a complete stranger? I have. And I am sure I have been guilty of this myself somewhere along the way. This is the example I will use to help you begin your journey to self love and self compassion. Even though the actions of being kind to that stranger aren’t authentic, I want to ask you, don’t you at least deserve the effort you gave them? I witnessed a mother (I assume she was the girl’s mother) in a store the other day who was with her  approximately 8 year old daughter. The young girl was looking at cards and would come to her mother to ask, “is this a good one”? It was very clear from watching, that the young girl wanted to pick the “perfect” card for whomever it was she was buying the card. It was obviously very important to her to pick a special card. The mother’s response was, “Just pick a fuc*ing” card”. I was shocked, and sad, and I wanted to go to the girl and tell her “I see you trying to pick the perfect card, I see it is so important for you to choose the most special one.” But I didn’t.  The woman passed me after being so unkind to her daughter, and she very politely said, “excuse me”, and even smiled at me! I don’t want to pass judgement here, because maybe this woman had a terrible day and this isn’t how she usually speaks to her sweet daughter. I truly hope this is the case.  If this isn’t the case, then I hope this woman will eventually come to a place of loving herself so she and her daughter can have an emotionally healthy relationship. So, how does this relate to what I am talking about?

Little Girl Holding Kitten

 in the moment

Well, my guess is that this woman’s outburst to her child is also her own inner voice. The one she uses to beat herself up with. It is difficult for a person who dislikes themselves to see a young  beautifully innocent young girl who is in the moment, happily picking out a special card (or whatever the situation may be). It “triggers” something inside them that if they don’t take the time to figure out why it triggers them, they will continue beating themselves up. The other important thing to notice is if this young girl starts taking in this negativity; the unresolved emotions, the  negative talk from her mother, she too, may begin the process of self hate. This is not always the case. There are some people who seem to be able to hear this negativity and separate it from themselves. They somehow realize even from a young age that these negative interactions are not personal. Unfortunately, many people take on this negativity as if they deserve to be treated unkindly. When frequent situations such as this happen, a person may develop a very harsh inner voice. I just wanted to mention this, because it helped me begin to understand how my own harsh inner voice began. I could *feel* the person’s emotions (energy) if it was negative, even if they were saying something to me that they wanted to sound “positive”. I *felt* them rather than *heard* their words. Hope that makes sense. It is like someone telling you your beloved pet cat is going to be okay, when in fact, you feel they are lying to you so that they don’t have to tell you the truth. By the way, this behavior is crazy making! It took me years to figure this out. A person claiming to care about me saying one thing to me, but I would feel the complete opposite coming from them.

 If you are able to be nice to a stranger, you *know* people deserve kindness!

To begin the process of being kind, loving, and compassionate to yourself, you must begin to be aware of your thoughts. And then when you notice a negative one, start a dialog with yourself. Be that lady who was polite to me. Even though I felt negative energy from her, she was still able to talk kindly to me. No, it may not feel authentic, but it is a start. And, consider this: you deserve to be treated kindly and with respect and compassion! If you are able to be nice to a stranger, you *know* people deserve kindness! Guess what, you are one of those people who deserve kindness! Most importantly, you deserve kindness from yourself. Try doing this even when it doesn’t feel authentic to you. It most likely won’t feel authentic for awhile. That’s okay. That is to be expected since your inner voice has been so critical for so long! And, your inner critic ISN’T YOU!! That inner voice is an accumulation of those negative voices, thoughts and beliefs stemming from negative experiences (like the little girl I mentioned about) and negative people all throughout the course of your life.

“I am so lazy, why can’t I just clean my room?”

I am a very emotionally sensitive person, so if you are too, it is very likely you have picked up many of these negative experiences. And remember, dysfunctional people pass their dysfunction on to others unless they are working on healing these experiences. So, if you have had unhealthy people in your life at any time (which, let’s face it, who hasn’t?), chances are good that you may have picked up unhealthy thoughts and beliefs about yourself. You can begin right now to change this. If you have a negative thought about yourself, it is absolutely not true. There is a difference between saying to yourself something like, “My room is messy, I would like it cleaned up”, vs. something like, “I am so lazy, why can’t I just clean my room?” BIG difference! The first statement is simply a desire, the second is a harsh self-judgment meant to make a person feel shame. Begin simply by noticing and observing these thoughts going through your mind. Then question them; is this self-judgment, is this a kind voice, whose voice is this? Ask yourself how you would respond to a young child who you happen to over hear speaking to himself with this voice. I’m guessing you would respond with love and kindness and compassion? GIVE the same thing to yourself!

Nurture yourself!

I am going to add more to this post soon, but until then….please think of small ways to begin nurturing yourself. Buy yourself a new pen, go to the library and get a book you have been wanting to read, take a long hot bubble bath, get outside and go for a hike with the soothing trees and birds and crickets, play with your cat or dog, allow yourself to take a nap, play a fun game with a child, light a candle and sit down for 10 minutes and just observe your breath moving in and out of your nose, get a massage, paint, draw, color, work with clay, write in your journal, sing, dance, jump on the bed, do something that makes you feel loved. This is the beginning of loving yourself. Give yourself a big hug and talk to yourself as if you are a small child who still trusts love. You deserve love! You are love! You ARE NOT those negative thoughts you have been living with and believing all these years.

 

 

 

 

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