A WISE Insight

From Kim on why she continues to accept being treated badly:

At first I refused to accept the idea that I allowed myself to be treated badly because I was getting something out of it. In fact, I argued this at length with the Facilitator. Later I went home and thought about it and started to jot some ideas down. Who knew??? I actually have 10 reasons I do this! What an eye-opener.

  1. I can remain the perpetual victim (I have a hard time accepting this idea, because I don’t like feeling weak and out of control)
  2. I get to avoid change
  3. I can avoid being happy
  4. I too can be as abusive and critical on myself
  5. It reaffirms the notion that I am not good enough and so reinforces my low self-esteem
  6. It feels normal
  7. It is easier than dealing with the problem
  8. It validates my belief that I don’t deserve better
  9. It solidifies my need for approval and connection
  10. It is even more painful to change

When I finished my list, I realized that each statement falls into one of two categories:  low self-esteem or the fear of change (at least I know and recognize this mind set). For the first time in my life, I not only had an answer but a direction out:  time to re-read those sections on self-esteem and how to navigate change!

From Paige on Figuring Out Our True Feelings

Something really hit me tonight... a real AHA MOMENT.

When I made the connection recently that some of my behaviours in certain areas of my life are immature, it opened up a world of reflection for me. Since that time I have really given it a lot of thought and I started to work through it. Yes, there were a couple of days I started to dwell on the negative, experienced sadness, felt sorry for myself, etc. and there were some tears... but most of all there was this profound feeling that I could not label. I thought it was sadness so I wrote down my reflections to try and figure it out. So much more came up...I found the process difficult, sad. I could not figure out what was it that I was feeling… I felt a longing for something which troubled me and left me unsettled.

Then it came to me - the feeling I was trying to label was grief.

I realize I have been grieving so many things - the failure of my marriage, the struggle of being a single mom, feeling betrayed and abandoned by my family. I sat there, staying with the feelings, letting the pain of it wash over me. I decided I would allow them to be there as long as they needed to be, without dwelling on them or feeling sorry for myself. (Yahoo! Progress!)

It feels so good to just acknowledge it. And now…I just need to get my goddamn shit together!

From Victoria on Personal Responsibility

The jig is up. I am responsible for myself and for getting my act together. I’m worth it. It is time to put some effort into my life. And this is what it looks like:

  • It's not all about me
  • It is not me, it’s them (and there problem)
  • Just let it go and don't over-function
  • Make myself a priority
  • Stop the guilt
  • Get to the root of the problem (may be reacting to something but really something else is bothering me)
  • Treat my children with more respect
  • No foods are bad

From Melanie on Worthiness

"We were asked to pick a word that summarizes the legacy of our childhood. I thought my word was abandonment - and yes, at times I feel abandoned by my parents but I think the better word for me is worthiness. 

My parents loved and valued me but when they turned to alcohol, that came first. I felt as if my value diminished. I didn't "matter" enough - not enough for either of them to stick around. Alcohol, their world, 'mattered' more. 

No matter how I overachieved (and I did), nothing felt good enough, so I turned to others to try and find value.

In my marriage, I feel the same, no matter how I overachieve - high position job, super mom, volunteer, coach, do it all - I am not valued - so I look to external sources - to food, fantasizing about other relationships, work, distractions - to feel full. 

And then it hit me - the only source of true and lasting validation, the only opinion of myself that should really matter – is me and mine."